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FAQs

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Hopefully we have answered your question below, however if you still have any queries please call us on 01422 357 357.

General

Further education is the study you continue after you have left school at 16. The qualifications you pursue can be at any level and are largely designed as an alternative to a traditional academic A Level route to university or employment.

Taught by professionals with up to date experience in specific fields, the subject matter can range from construction skills to hairdressing, beauty, holistic therapies, design, acting, dancing, sport, science, health, childcare, law, business, computing and so on.

If you’re between 16 and 18, and from an EU country (including the UK), your fees are paid. If you are 19 or over, and from the UK, you are exempt from paying fees if you are in receipt of income-based benefits.

Apply as soon as you know what you want to do. Some courses are really popular and will fill up quickly.

Complete and return the application form at the back of this prospectus or apply online at www.calderdale.ac.uk. After that we will arrange an interview for you to find out if the course is suitable for you. If successful we’ll offer you a place—sometimes conditional upon grades you get in your exams.

Once at College you will be allocated a Personal Tutor, who will get to know you and will be your first port of call for support. Specialist staff and resources such as counsellors, learning support tutors and careers advisors are available to give you whatever support you need. Individual needs can differ greatly and we work hard to help you to overcome your personal challenges, be they physical or medical or should they involve emotional and mental health.

If you need it we will organise support you can rely on, by liaising with friends, family, professionals or organisations to help you make the most of your time at College.

If you have a disability, a medical condition, or a learning difficulty it would be really helpful for us to know, then we can identify and support any needs or requirements you might have in relation to study or attending College for courses or interview/assessment. You can tell us on your application form of anything you think might be relevant.

Anything you tell us in relation to your support requirements will not affect your chances of acceptance on a course and will be treated in the strictest confidence. The College is committed to supporting its learners and spends substantial amounts of its funding on learner support, helping learners receiving support in the last academic year to achieve a 98% achievement rate.

The purpose of the tutorial system is to make sure you get the most out of your time at College and to support your learning.

Your development is regularly reviewed. You also have group tutorials to cover personal development, careers education and action planning.

You will regularly review your own progress through self-review and with your personal tutor, allowing you to set objectives to help you to achieve your goals. Your personal tutorials will also help you develop your CV, consider career or university options and develop your ability to assess your own performance.

We expect you to take more responsibility for your own learning than you may have been used to and to spend time while at College working on assignments on your own or in small groups. Although, depending on what you are studying, not all self-guided learning will be of an academic nature.

You may need to spend some ‘homework’ time researching on the internet or working in College on a particular project. For instance, Performing Arts learners may want to rehearse outside of normal course hours. The more work you do at College, the less you’ll need to do at home!

It really depends on your course, but most full time students will be in College a maximum of four days per week. The timetables allow time for personal study and also for part time jobs, which we know are important.

It’s also important that you attend College regularly and your tutors will monitor attendance to help keep you on track with your studies. In some areas, especially academies, attendance determines your access to additional enrichment programmes.

Yes, we appreciate that learners sometimes need to support themselves financially with part time jobs. We would recommend working no more than 10 hours per week alongside full time study.

Learners who find themselves in financial difficulties can get confidential advice on financial assistance from Student Services.

Many learners go on to university or further study here at Calderdale College, or into successful careers in their chosen field.

In some subject areas, you can study right up to degree level at Calderdale College, degrees are awarded by partner universities, Bradford University, Huddersfield University and Leeds Beckett University.

Unlike when you’re at school, outside of class College learners can come and go as they please and therefore we ask that you show your learner ID card on entering the building so that we can identify those people who are not learners of the College and ask them to sign in as visitors. This also allows us to adhere to health and safety policies.

The College has many CCTV cameras in and around the buildings on the main site and at other locations.  You can feel secure in the knowledge that these are monitored 24/7.

We have courses at all levels so we should be able to help you find a suitable course. If we make you an offer and you don’t achieve the grades you need, you will be able to discuss your options at your enrolment session or you can come to our Results Day Service.

Our services are open to anyone on GCSE and A Levels results days for advice and guidance.

Assessments, Disciplinary and Safeguarding

Your Tutor/Training Officer/Assessor will tell you more about how your learning is to be assessed and the different types used. On most courses your work will be internally assessed and marked. Your Tutor/Training Officer/Assessor will assesses and mark your work as you go along.

Formative assessment is used to conduct in-process evaluations of your comprehension, learning needs, and academic progress during a lesson, unit or course. Summative assessment is to evaluate your learning at the end of a unit or course by comparing it against the specification criteria and learning outcomes and awarding you a mark and or a grade. Awarding Bodies then verify the marks are correct, through a sampling process called standards verification.

On some qualifications external assessment takes place for example GCSE papers are marked by the awarding body. BTEC Firsts & Nationals usually have units that are externally assessed through, onscreen, paper-based and set tasks which are conducted at set times of the year. For the new Apprenticeship standards End Point Assessment now takes place. Once the results are received you Tutor/Training Officer/Assessor will let know the outcomes.

In line with the College’s assessment policy your assessor will aim to return your work with clear and constructive feedback within 10 working days of the date you handed it in. In most cases they will meet this, however if longer is needed then your tutor/assessor will advise you of when you can expect to have your marked work returned.

In most cases marks/grades given are provisional and until they have been ratified by an Internal Verifier, External Standards Verifier or Exam Boards can your Tutor/Training Officer/Assessor formally confirm the marks/grades.

In most cases the marks/grades stay the same as the provisional ones, however is some cases they can go up or down. When this happens your Tutor/Training Officer/Assessor will explain the reason and if any action can be taken.

Most qualifications that you enrol on have a credit point value. This is made up of credit points per unit/ module and the total credits awarded will also be based on the overall grade for example: D*D*D* will gain you many more points than a PPP.

The award of credits for a unit/module is an all-or-nothing affair: if you successfully complete the unit/module, you get all the credits for it; if you fail the unit/module you get none of the credits for it. Depending on your qualification you will have to achieve a certain number of credits to partially or fully achieve your qualification.

Your qualifications and grades convert into UCAS tariff points translate into a numerical value based on the size and grade you achieved. Some universities and colleges refer to UCAS tariff points in their entry requirements, so make sure you check the entry requirements carefully for your progression to the next level of study.

The credit structure of your course will be explained by your Tutor/Training Officer/Assessor.

Your Tutor/Training Officer/Assessor will keep you informed of you final outcomes at the end of the course or when externally assessed are received. For GCSEs the College will invite you in on GCSE results day and provide you with the grades that you have been awarded.

If your result is overdue for an internally or externally marked qualification please contact and discuss this with your Tutor/Training Officer/Assessor.

If you are no longer at College contact the Curriculum Support Office 01422 357357 ext 9330 and you will have to provide the following information:

  • Your name and address.
  • Your learner ID
  • Your D.O.B
  • The qualification you are awaiting a result about.
  • A contact telephone number (if you have one).
  • An email address (if you have one)

The Curriculum Support Office will make an enquiry on your behalf and will let you know the outcome with 5 working days.

What if I want to appeal against and assessment decision?

The College operates a rigorous system of internal verification to validate fair assessment that complies with Awarding Body requirements. It is recognised that there may be circumstances when individual learners or groups are unhappy with an assessment decision.

If you believe that a piece of work has been assessed unfairly, inconsistently or not in accordance with the standards and level required by the Awarding Body you have the right to appeal. Any enquiry, question or appeal should be made as soon as possible after the assessment decision.

An appeal must be made within 10 working days after receiving the assessment results. You must discuss this with your Tutor/Training Officer/Assessor first who will advise of the process that you will have to follow.

In some cases the College on behalf of a cohort of learners may register an appeal with an Awarding Body on their behalf if it is believed that there are marking or administration errors. Note: in all cases of appeal your mark can either stay the same, go up or go down.

After you have enrolled on your course, the College is responsible for registering you with the relevant Awarding Body. On successfully completing your qualification, the College will claim your achievement with the relevant Awarding Body who will then issue your certificate and send it to the College.

On receipt of your certificate the College will update your achievement records and then post out your certificate to your address retained in our student records. From completing your course it can take between 4-8 weeks for your certificate to be sent to you.

The majority of certificates that you will receive from the College for achieving a qualification will be awarded by a nationally recognised Awarding Body or in a few cases a College issued certificate.

The certificates that you receive are nationally recognised and accepted as means of entry into employment, progression in learning with further and/or higher education.

The recognition of prior learning enables learners to be recognised for the experience and competence acquired in their working lives, previous education/training and qualifications from other countries. It may provide exemption or part exemption, from the normal requirements for acquiring credit based qualification where this is permitted by the relevant Awarding Body.

Please note: RPL does not apply for attainment assessed through national examinations and where the learner is required to sit the examination.

The opportunity to use RPL will normally be discussed or used as part of your interview. If you are successful at your interview will be asked to bring in your evidence especially certificates so that these can be recorded on your enrolment form.

If you require further information, please discuss with your Tutor/Training Officer/Assessor or the Admissions Team.

This evidence can come from a wide range of previous activities and qualifications and the following list provides examples of evidence that can be used for RPL. This list is neither inclusive nor exhaustive:

  • Certificates from Prior Qualification including Unitised
  • Non Accredited Courses e.g. In-house training
  • Portfolio
  • Work Experience (paid or unpaid/ voluntary)
  • Community or voluntary activities
  • Domestic/Family Life
  • Life experience
  • Viva Voce
  • Interview
  • Audition
  • Artefact
  • Diagnostic Assessment

The College needs to make learners aware that any learner discovered trying to gain an academic advantage through academic misconduct in any form.

If you are discovered or suspected of doing any of the things shown in the list below, the College will investigate this which could result in penalties being imposed against you depending on the severity of the misconduct.

Examples of Academic Misconduct:

  • Taking someone else’s work, images or ideas and passing it off as your own (This is called plagiarism)
  • Using the computer, either the internet, or information stored on the hard or USB disk which belongs to someone else, and passing it off as one’s own
  • Secretly agreeing with others to cheat or deceive. (This is known as collusion)
  • Using mobile devices such as phones or smart watches during an exam or assessment that is conducted under controlled examination conditions

To minimise this happening your Tutor/Training Officer/Assessor will explain what you can and can not use in your work. In some cases you can use other people’s work as long as it is referenced correctly and your Tutor/Training Officer/Assessor will advise you on this. If in doubt ask!

The College recognises that learners may suffer from a sudden illness, or other serious and unforeseen event or set of circumstances, which adversely affects their ability to complete or submit assessment or prevented from attending or completing a formal assessment/exam.

These are known as extenuating circumstances. Learners may submit their circumstances to request an extension or apply for mitigation to lessen the harmful effect of their extenuating circumstances on assessment outcomes.

In all cases supporting evidence must be provided which could include: Medical Appointment letter, Doctors note, Death certificate, Funeral order of service, Letter from employer confirming that you had to work to cover a sick colleague, Crime report and number.

On receipt of this either your Tutor/Training Officer/Assessor/Lead IV or a formal Mitigation Panel will consider you case and decide if it is serious enough to warrant deferral. For more information please ask you Tutor/Training Officer/Assessor.

First Aid is essential in an emergency if you become ill or have an accident. The College has several qualified First Aiders and they are available across the College. If first aid is required, please speak to a member of staff or contact Reception ext 200 and they will arrange for a First Aider to attend to you.

If you have a concern it is always best to talk to your Progress Coach, Tutor, Training Officer, Assistant Curriculum Manager or Learner Services as these people will hopefully help you to resolve this.

Once you have exhausted this you may want to register your concern as a complaint, if so please complete the online form on the College Website https://www.calderdale.ac.uk/contact-us/compliment-comment-or-complaint/

Alternatively pick up a form in Learner Services or from Reception and follow the instructions.

What happens next?

• We aim to send you an acknowledgement letter within 2 working days confirming who will carry out the investigation along with contact details.

• Investigating staff will aim to meet with you within first 5-10 working days in order to investigate raised concerns.

• Final response will be sent by letter within 20 working days of first receiving it. This is our target for all complaints. If we need more time to investigate, we will explain why and when you can expect our response.

Appeals

• If you remain dissatisfied, you have the right of appeal which must be made in writing to the College Principal, within 10 working days of the date on the final response letter being issued.

• The Principal or designated Deputy/Vice Principal, depending on who conducts the appeal, will respond within 10 working days and arrange an appropriate time to meet with you to discuss your appeal.

• Appeal hearing letter will be sent within 10 working days of appeal hearing

• If you are still dissatisfied, you have the right to appeal to either the Education and Skills Funding Agency (ESFA) for FE funded courses, Awarding Body/University.

• These bodies may not investigate the original complaint you made against the College but will look at whether the College handled your complaint appropriately.

Cut-off Limits

The College cut-off is 3 months after the date of an incident to accept a complaint unless there is clear evidence that the complainant needed longer and therefore the College is willing to consider these exceptions.

The Calderdale College Disciplinary Process is a formal process used to support learners to resolve issues defined as unacceptable in the College code of conduct. This is a brief overview of the process and shows the four stages of the disciplinary:-

Stage 1&2 Minor Misconduct e.g. poor punctuality, poor attendance, disrupting and disrespectful behaviour, misuse of the internet/IT equipment, late or non-submission of work, minor cases of academic misconduct.

Stage 3 Serious Misconduct e.g. repeated or persistent violation stage 1 & 2 warnings, minor breach of Health & Safety regulations, moderate cases of academic misconduct, demonstration of aggressive behaviour, discrimination, harassment, bullying..

Stage 4 Gross Misconduct e.g. bullying, intimidation, harassment, any criminal offences, bringing non-learners onto the premises, under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Please note: the examples above are inclusive but not exhaustive, please see the full disciplinary policy.

Timeline

The process is managed within strict timescales to minimise disruption to your study and is therefore essential that you keep to your appointment time. The timeline is available as a flowchart included in the disciplinary pack.

Support

Support is available to you throughout the disciplinary process. This will ensure that you engage with the process to find a positive and workable solution.

Advice and Guidance will contact you at stage three and four to discuss your support needs which could include someone to speak for you, support you through the interviews or where necessary provide you with language support. You can bring a friend, family member or other representative to support you at any stage of the disciplinary process.

Investigating Officer

A member of College staff will conduct an investigation to gather evidence to support the disciplinary process.

Possible outcomes

  • No Further Action will be taken
  • Verbal or written Warning
  • Go to a more appropriate stage of the Disciplinary Procedure
  • Contract for improved behaviour
  • Exclusion

Appeals process

There is a right of appeal at every level of the disciplinary process and this will be explained to you at the hearing.

What Next?

In most cases disciplinary hearings find a way for learning to continue providing you are prepared to enter into a contract for improving your behaviour. The College will help you through this process so that you can continue with your studies.

For full details of the process refer to the Learner Disciplinary Policy & Procedure. If you, any members of your family, support workers or employers wish to discuss the process, please contact Advice and Guidance on 01422 399367.

The College takes the safeguarding of its learners very seriously and it is fully committed to the well-being of all learners, staff and those with links to the College. The safety of all people involved in College life is a high priority and there is a robust policy and disclosure process in place.

If you have any concerns then you must report them to a member of staff or a member of the designated safeguarding team.

Contacts

Paul Hutchison (Safeguarding Coordinator) Call 01422 357 357 ext 9819, 07776 252381 or email: paulhu@calderdale.ac.uk

Alternatively email: safeguarding@calderdale.ac.uk or contact the IAG team on 01422 399367 or come to the Unit located in the One Centre on A Floor.

Did you know?

90% of students go on to employment or further study

OFSTED Good and Outstanding

We were rated Good for our Further Education offer and Outstanding for Apprenticeships!

Here’s what they said

“Teachers ensure that learners make good progress in developing their vocational skills and gain good levels of knowledge and understanding in practical subjects.”

Read more

“Learners gain confidence and improve the social interaction and communication skills that will support them well in their future lives.”

View our OFSTED report here.