Some frequently used ATTTO acronyms

A and B Bursaries  Cash payments toward tertiary study, awarded based on marks gained in University Entrance, Bursaries and Scholarships. An A Bursary is awarded for totals of 300 or more; a B Bursary is awarded for totals of 250 to 299. 

AAA  Approvals, Accreditation and Audit, a NZQA business unit. 

ABA  Achievement-based assessment.

ACC  Assessment of current competency. (See recognition of prior learning)

Accreditation  The status awarded when an organisation has shown it is capable of delivering an approved course or assess against standards on the National Qualifications Framework.

Achievement objective  A desired learning outcome that is consistent with the aims of a programme or course.

Achievement standard  A nationally registered, coherent set of learning outcomes and associated assessment criteria, together with technical and management information that supports delivery and assessment; achievement standards specify three different standards of performance and the method of assessment, which may include national external assessment.
Aim  A goal that is set for a programme.

AMAP  Accreditation and Moderation Action Plan. AMAPs are developed by standard-setting bodies and cover all areas of the National Qualifications Framework. AMAPs identify the specific criteria for accreditation and outline external moderation requirements. Each unit standard and achievement standard is assigned an AMAP which can be accessed on the NZQA website. 

AMPTEE  Aotearoa Māori Providers of Training, Education and Employment. 

ANTA  Australian National Training Authority. 

APL  Assessment of prior learning. (See recognition of prior learning)

APNZ  From January 2004 known as Institutes of Technology and Polytechnics of New Zealand (ITP New Zealand). 

Approval  A process of quality assuring courses and programmes against an established criteria. (See also approved course)

Approved course  A coherent programme based on clear and consistent aims, standards and assessment practices. 

APSU  Aotearoa Polytechnic Students Union. 

Assessment  Collecting and evaluating evidence to establish the level of an individual's performance. (See also fair assessment)

Assessment criteria  Statements against which the standard of performance of an element/outcome is assessed. 

Assessment method  A particular strategy used to gather evidence of achievement.

Assessment of current competencies  See recognition of prior learning

Assessment of prior learning  See recognition of prior learning

Assessor  A person who evaluates the assessment evidence presented by learners. (See also registered assessor)

Audit  See quality audit

Authenticity (of evidence)  Relates to assessment where the assessor must be confident that the work being assessed is attributable to the person being assessed - outside assistance must not distort the assessment. 

Bachelor degree  A level 7 qualification awarded after satisfactory completion of and achievement in a course or programme that provides a systematic, research-based introduction to a coherent body of knowledge, its underlying principles and concepts, associated usages and applications, and analytical and problem-solving techniques.  

Bursaries  Common abbreviation for University Entrance, Bursaries and Scholarships. Also the awards and payments gained within that qualification. 

CAT  Common assessment task. 

CBA  Competency based assessment. 

CBT  Competency based training. 

Certificate  A document that signifies a qualification has been awarded. 

Classification  A way of categorising a qualification. The Register uses the New Zealand standard classification of education (NZSCED) system; qualification developers and education providers nominate a NZSCED classification for their qualifications; quality assurance bodies must approve qualification titles before they can be classified. The National Qualifications Framework uses the standard classification of units and national qualifications (SCUNQ) system and NZSCED system. 

Competence  The ability to apply particular knowledge, skills, attitudes and values to the standard of performance required in specified contexts. 

Consistent  Refers to assessment. Assessment is consistent where, given similar circumstances the assessor would make the same judgement again and the judgement will be similar to judgements that other assessors would make. 

Consortium  Groupings of secondary schools working collaboratively to deliver typically vocational courses. 

Course (of study)  An approved course is a coherent learning or training programme that is based on clear and consistent aims, content, outcomes and assessment practices. 

Credit  A numerical value assigned to a standard on the National Qualifications Framework or a qualification on the Register that represents the estimated time needed for a typical learner to demonstrate that all specified outcomes have been met. 

Credit accumulation  The collecting of credits towards qualifications.

Credit exemption  See credit recognition.

Credit inclusion  See credit recognition.

Credit recognition  A process through which credits from one qualification are recognised for another qualification but where the credits are not included within the whole system of the second qualification (ie the credits count for a specified qualification only, not all qualifications in a system). Also known as credit exemption or credit inclusion. 

Credit transfer  The granting of credit towards a qualification on the basis of credit already earned in another qualification. Credits have to be recognised before they are transferred. See also credit recognition.

Degree  A qualification awarded after satisfactory completion of and achievement in a programme of advanced study taught mainly by people engaged in research and which emphasises general principles and basic knowledge as the basis for self-directed work.  

Delivery  The various aspects of a provided learning experience, including the content and context of the programme, resources, staff, teaching and learning strategies and assessment activities. 

Domain  An area of learning within a sub-field of the National Qualifications Framework, as defined in the National Qualifications Framework classification system. 

Education professional A person who interacts with NZQA and belongs to the education profession in some capacity, examples include teachers, tutors, markers, principal nominees, assessors, exam centre managers, moderators, training advisors and workplace assessors. 

EFTS  Equivalent full-time student. Refer to Ministry of Education website.

Element  A learning outcome within a standard on the National Qualifications Framework; collectively the elements constitute the title of the standard.

ESOL  English for speakers of other languages. 

Evidence  Refers to assessment. Evidence must be:

• Valid - assessment will be fit for purpose, so that assessment focuses on the requirements specified in unit standards 

• Direct - assessment activities will be as similar as possible to the conditions of actual performance 

• Authentic - the assessor will be confident that the work being assessed is attributable to the person being assessed - outside assistance must not distort the assessment 

• Sufficient - the evidence will establish with confidence that all criteria have been met and that performance to the required standard could be repeated with consistency. 

Fair assessment  Assessment that avoids influences unrelated to the matters being assessed; emphasis is placed on avoiding effects arising from differences related, for example, to race, gender and assessment method. 

Field  A broad area of learning on the National Qualifications Framework, as defined in the National Qualifications Framework classification system. 

Foreign student  An overseas student who has come to New Zealand for the purpose of education, and/or is currently on a student permit or diplomatic passport. This excludes students from overseas with New Zealand citizenship or permanent residence or with Australian citizenship. 

Framework  Shortening of National Qualifications Framework.

Higher School Certificate (HSC)  Certificate granted to any candidate who has satisfactorily completed, at any school, a five-year course of secondary instruction, which satisfies the requirements, set down by the Qualifications Authority. 

Industry training organisation  A body recognised under the Industry Training Act 1992 as having responsibility for setting standards and arranging the delivery of industry training for the sector it represents; commonly known as an ITO. ITOs can become accredited to register assessors. For a full list of registered ITOs, see the Tertiary Education Commission website.

Institution  A school, college of education, polytechnic, university or w?nanga (definition from the Education Act 1989, Section 159 (1)).

Internal assessment  All those assessments where the assessment judgement is made within a learning institution.
Internal moderation  An internal process confirming an organisation's assessment activities are fair, valid and consistent across all assessors and throughout all its sites.

ITF  Industry Training Federation. 

ITO  Industry training organisation. - See above

ITP New Zealand Institutes of Technology and Polytechnics of New Zealand (ITP New Zealand) - formerly APNZ. 

Kaupapa  The purpose and goals of an organisation. 

Learner  A person who is involved in learning and/or assessment (at a school, private training establishment, polytechnic, w?nanga, university, or in the workplace, etc). 

Learning outcome  An expected result of learning. 

Level  The ten levels of the National Qualifications Framework and the Register, level one being entry level. The level of each standard is set nationally according to general guidelines. 

Mana Tohu Matauranga o Aotearoa  The New Zealand Qualifications Authority. 

Masters degree  A qualification that builds on the knowledge and skills of a Bachelor degree requires more demanding and intensive study and includes supervised research.  

Moderation  A term that broadly covers processes used for assuring the consistency of assessment with the required standard across a number of assessors or assessing organisations. 

Moderator  Independent person who has acknowledged expertise to confirm that assessment results reflect intended standards.

MoE  Ministry of Education.

MQS  Māori Qualifications Services, a NZQA business unit.  

National Certificate  A qualification on the National Qualifications Framework that recognises skills and knowledge that meet nationally endorsed standards (unit and achievement standards); National Certificates are usually registered between levels 1 and 4, and require a minimum of 40 credits at or above the level at which the qualification is registered.  

National Certificate of Educational Achievement  National qualifications on the National Qualifications Framework based on credits from all unit and achievement standards; NCEAs are registered between levels 1 and 3, and are open to anyone assessed through an accredited provider.

National Diploma  A qualification on the National Qualifications Framework that recognises skills and knowledge that meet nationally endorsed standards (unit and achievement standards); National Diplomas are registered between levels 5 and 7. The top 72 credits define the level at which the qualification can be registered and at least 120 of all credits contributing towards the qualification must be at level 4 or above.  

National qualification  A particular combination of credits from assessment against national standards as determined by a national standards-setting body; national qualifications must be established by a recognised national standards-setting body and must be available to all organisations accredited by the relevant quality assurance body.  

National Qualifications Framework  Collectively, all nationally registered qualifications, unit standards and achievement standards, together with the relationships among these.

National standards  Unit standards and achievement standards registered on the National Qualifications Framework. 

NCEA  National Certificate of Educational Achievement.

New Zealand qualification  Qualification of national standing that is not based on credits from standards on the National Qualifications Framework. 

New Zealand Scholarship Certificate  The New Zealand Scholarship Certificate will be awarded to students who have achieved the scholarship standards in at least three subjects, within a 3 year period. 

NQF  National Qualifications Framework.

NQS  National Qualifications Services, a NZQA business unit.  

NSI  National Student Index. The system maintained by the Ministry of Education that contains registration details for all learners known to the Ministry. The NSI assigns a lifetime identification number (NSN, National Student Number) to each learner. 

NSN  National Student Number. See NSI.

NZAPEP  New Zealand Association of Private Education Providers. 

NZDipBus  New Zealand Diploma in Business.  

NZPCC  New Zealand Polytechnic Programmes Committee - now ITP Quality 


NZQA  New Zealand Qualifications Authority. 

NZSCED  New Zealand Standard Classification of Education. (MoE and Register)

OSH  Occupational safety and health. 

Outcome  See learning outcome.

Peer assessment  Assessment of individual performance undertaken by fellow learners. 

Performance criteria  Performance criteria specify the quality of the critical evidence required to meet the outcomes in the elements. Collectively, they provide the standards against which elements are assessed.

Performance indicators  Statements against which the performance of an organisation or system is assessed. 

Portfolio  A learner's personal collection of evidence of achievement; also a method of gathering evidence. 

Prescription  The content, skills and knowledge to be assessed in a qualification or examination. 

Private training establishment  Non-state-owned organisation, registered with NZQA, that provides post-school education and training. Often known as a PTE. 

Programme  Term used to encompass courses of study and/or research activity. 

Provider  An individual or organisation supplying education and/or training and/or assessment services; includes schools, polytechnics, colleges of education, private training establishments, government training establishments, w?nanga and workplaces. 

PTE  Private training establishment.

QMS  Quality management systems. 

Qualification  Requirements for certification established by a recognised standards-setting body or an education provider.

Quality assurance  A collective term used for activities used to ensure that business is carried out effectively and efficiently. 

Quality assured qualification  A qualification that is approved by any of the recognised quality assurance bodies.

Quality audit  An independent examination of a management system to see whether activities are effective in achieving an organisation's goals and objectives. 

Quality management  Coherent management activity that ensures quality policies and objectives are set, implemented and evaluated. 

Quality management system  A system of clearly defined organisational structures, processes, responsibilities and resources used to assure quality. 

Range Range statements provide clarification of the standard, or an outline of the critical evidence to be considered in assessment, to ensure that standards have been met. They may also provide context and clarify limits. Range statements can apply to all outcomes in the standard, an element outcome, or a performance criterion.

RCC  Recognition of current competency. (See recognition of prior learning)

Recognition of current competencies  See recognition of prior learning

Recognition of prior learning  Assessment that makes use of indirect evidence of achievement and/or evidence from activities that are undertaken without first requiring additional learning; often called recognition or assessment of current competencies; the term 'recognition' is meant to imply that skills and knowledge will be recognised by some form of assessment against established criteria.

Record of Learning  An individual learner's transcript of unit standards and achievement standards credited and national qualifications completed, provided by NZQA from a national database.  

(The) Register  The New Zealand Register of Quality Assured Qualifications (commonly know as the Register) is a list of all quality assured qualifications in New Zealand. The Register has ten levels and comprises qualifications that are registered in accordance with an agreed set of title definitions. 

Registered assessor  An assessor registered by an accredited national standards-setting body to assess learners. Assessment usually take place in the workplace. 

Registration (of unit standards, achievement standards and qualifications)  A process that ensures unit standards, achievement standards and national qualifications have received appropriate national endorsement and meet the technical requirements of NZQA; the process concludes when these are entered onto the Framework database; standards and qualifications are reviewed periodically.  

Reporting  Supplying information on the progress and achievements of a learner. 

Review  If a candidate believes a mechanical error has been made in the marking of their external assessment material (eg a section of work not marked, the incorrect transfer of grades or marks), he or she can ask for a review. Review requests must be made in writing and within a specified timeframe. Candidates who request a review cannot also request a reconsideration.

RoL  Record of Learning.

RPL  Recognition of prior learning.

Scholarship The New Zealand Scholarship is registered on the New Zealand Register of Quality Assured Qualifications as an independent level 4 qualifications. To complete the qualification students require 72 credits. Each Scholarship standard contributes 24 credits towards the qualification. See also New Zealand Scholarship Certificate and Top Scholars.

School Certificate  Secondary school qualification withdrawn in 2003 when NCEA became me the national secondary school qualification. 

Self-assessment  A process in which a learner assesses his/her own achievements and progress. 

Self-evaluation  A method by which providers judge their own effectiveness against good practice criteria and compliance with NZQA's registration and accreditation requirements; providers must report their findings to NZQA after self-evaluation. 

SFC  Sixth Form Certificate.

Sixth Form Certificate  Secondary school award withdrawn in 2003, generally taken by learners in year 12 (form 6) of school. Required at least four hours of supervised study per week in each subject. In 2003, most schools offered NCEA level 2 instead of Sixth Form Certificate. Schools could also offer a transitional Sixth Form Certificate in 2003 and 2004 instead of or in addition to NCEA level 2.

Sixth Form Certificate (transitional)  Award available in 2003 and 2004, distinguishable from the Sixth Form Certificate by the term 'transitional' because it will not be possible to base school grade pools on the previous year's School Certificate results. Schools can offer the same courses with the transitional certificate, and no new courses will be approved. 

SSC  State Services Commission. 

STA  School Trustees Association. 

(i) Defined learning outcomes, together with performance or assessment criteria examples of their interpretation and application, and associated quality assurance processes. (See also unit standard and achievement standard)
(ii) Defined organisational or systems criteria, together with performance indicators. 

Standards-based assessment  Process of judging learner achievement against defined standards. 

Standard-setting bodies  A collective term that covers industry training organisations and advisory groups; these organisations are recognised by NZQA as nationally representative of experts in a particular field for the purposes of establishing standards for national qualifications. 

STAR  Secondary Tertiary Alignment Resource, a Ministry of Education initiative 

STEP Statement of Tertiarty Education priorities

Sub-field  An area of learning within a field of the National Qualifications Framework; defined in the National Qualifications Framework Classification System. 

Sufficiency  Refers to evidence of assessment. Sufficient evidence will establish with confidence that all criteria have been met and that performance to the required standard could be repeated with consistency. 

Supervisor  A person employed by the Qualifications Authority to assist in the supervision of examinations, under the direction of the Examination Centre Manager. 

TAFE  Technical and Further Education (= Australian Polytechnic). 

TAM  Tertiary Assessment and Moderation, a NZQA business unit. 

TEC  Tertiary Education Commission. 

Tertiary education  Post-secondary education; includes learning undertaken in the workplace as well as with providers.

TES Tertiary Educations Strategy

TKI  Te Kete Ipurangi. 

TKR  Te Kohanga Reo. 

TNA  Training needs analysis. 

TOP  Training opportunities programme. 

Top Scholar awards  The Top Scholars Awards are the new awards for excellence for secondary school students. These awards replace the Top Scholars in University Bursaries.

TQM  Total quality management 

Trade Certificate  (See the Trade Certificate) 

transition  transition arrangements must be specified whenever the introduction of a new qualification will impact on existing qualifications. Transition arrangements refer to the short-to-medium-term arrangements that are put in place to ensure that no one is disadvantaged by changes made to qualifications; that pathways from the former qualification(s) to the new one(s) exist for all current candidates; or that candidates are granted sufficient time to complete the qualification(s) they embarked upon. 

unit standard  a nationally registered, coherent set of learning outcomes and associated performance criteria, together with technical and management information that supports delivery and assessment. All unit standards are registered on the National Qualifications Framework, assigned a level and a credit value, and may contribute to the award of a National Certificate or Diploma.

University entrance  The common educational standard established, after consultation with the universities and the New Zealand Vice-Chancellors' Committee, and maintained by the Qualifications Authority as a prerequisite for entrance to university for people who have not attained the age of 20 years (under section 257, Education Act 1989).

University Entrance, Bursaries and Scholarships  Qualification usually taken by learners at the end of year 13 (form 7). Candidates can qualify for entrance to university, gain monetary awards (A and B Bursaries) and be awarded scholarships for high achievement in individual subjects. Candidates who gain five or six scholarship grades receive monetary awards as part of the Top Scholar awards.

User group  Those who gain direct or indirect benefit from a qualification and its component unit standards or achievement standards; generally includes students, qualified individuals, professional associations and employers; users may be represented, along with providers, in a standards-setting body.

Valid assessment  Assessment that achieves fitness for purpose by using evidence directly related to the type and level of performance required in a specified standard, and by being fair and consistent.  

Wananga  An organisation recognised as a wananga by the Crown under the Education Amendment Act 1990, section 162