What are the changes?
From January 2012, students will be enrolled on to a revised specification of the International General Certificate in Occupational Health and Safety. The three unit structure remains unchanged (Unit IGC1: Management of international health and safety, Unit IGC2: Control of international workplace risks and Unit IGC3: International health and safety practical application).
The syllabus has been revised and updated with Unit IGC1 re-organised to follow the structure of the UK Health and Safety Executive’s guide to “Successful Health and Safety Management” (HSG65). Minor revisions and updates have also been made to Unit IGC2.
In addition to this, from January 2012 candidates will be required to conduct the IGC3: International health and safety practical application in their workplace. A syllabus summary and guidance to completing practical assessments in the workplace is available in both the secure course providers section of the website and in the students’ section of our website. http://www.nebosh.org.uk/students/currently studying
Why the change?
Following changes to the National General Certificate in 2010, NEBOSH took the opportunity to review the qualification to ensure consistency between the National and International Certificates.
Have the assessments changed?
The format of Unit IGC1 and IGC2 assessments are unchanged and students sitting examinations between 1 January 2012 and 31 December 2012 will be assessed on content common to both the International General Certificate (2007 specification) and the International General Certificate (2011 specification) syllabuses. Examinations will not include revised syllabus content until 1 January 2013.
The main change to the assessment is to Unit IGC3: International health and safety practical application which will be carried out in the student’s workplace from 1 January 2012. The assessment criteria and mark scheme for Unit IGC3 has been revised to the International General Certificate 2011 specification. Revised guidance for Unit IGC3 is available on the NEBOSH website www.nebosh.org.uk. This guidance must be read by the student and applied thoroughly as it will be the student’s responsibility to ensure the practical application is carried out in accordance with NEBOSH requirements.
What do I receive on completion of the International General Certificate in Occupational Health and Safety (March 2011 specification)?
This remains unchanged. Successful candidates will be awarded a unit certificate to denote their achievement of each unit. Once a candidate has passed all three units the three marks will be added together to calculate the overall grade and a qualification parchment will be issued.
What level is the International General Certificate?
For users in England, Wales and Northern Ireland, this qualification is intended to be broadly comparable to a Vocationally-Related Qualification (VRQ) at Level 3 in the National Qualifications Framework (NQF) and the Qualifications and Credit Framework (QCF), comparable to GCSE standard.
For users in Scotland, this qualification is intended to be broadly comparable to Level 6 in the Scottish Credit and Qualifications Framework (SCQF).
Details of formal regulatory credit rating and accreditation will be made available in due course. For further information on level comparisons please see the qualification regulator’s “Qualifications can cross boundaries” document available on the Ofqual (www.ofqual.gov.uk) and SQA (www.sqa.org.uk) website.
Do the changes to the qualification affect the status of the International General Certificate?
The International General Certificate in Occupational Health and Safety September 2007 and March 2011 specifications are of equal status.
Do these changes affect me if I have already achieved the International General Certificate?
No – your qualification continues to have the same status.
What if I originally registered to sit the International General Certificate (September 2007 specification) and have not completed my overall qualification by 31 December 2011?
Students who have only partially completed the International General Certificate in Occupational Health and Safety (2007 specification) when it expires on 31 December 2011 will not be disadvantaged.
Unit certificates already issued under the International General Certificate (2007 specification) remain valid.
Please note that from 1 January 2013 Unit IGC1 and IGC2 examinations will include questions from the revised syllabus which may not have been included in course materials if students began their studies early in 2011. Students transferred from the International General Certificate (2007 specification) but are yet to complete the qualification by 1 January 2013 may require additional tuition. The Unit IGC3 unit (if not completed before 31 December 2011) will have to be conducted in the student’s workplace, unless previously agreed with the NEBOSH accredited course provider.
We strongly recommend that if you have previously registered to sit an examination for the International General Certificate before the 31 December 2011 you speak to your course provider to agree a timetable to complete your studies. This will ensure there is no confusion regarding examinable syllabus content.
Will I be affected as I am due to sit my International General Certificate examinations for the first time after 31 December 2011?
If you are due to sit your examinations for the first time after 31 December 2011 you will automatically be sitting the examinations for the International General Certificate (2011 specification) and your practical application will be based in the workplace.
How do I know what International General Certificate specification I am studying?
Students sitting a Unit IGC1 or IGC2 examination after 1 January 2012 will be undertaking the 2011 specification. However, between 1 January 2012 and 31 December 2012 Unit IGC1 and IGC2 examination papers will be set on content common to both syllabuses.
Can I still use my successful IGC1 unit result as an exemption for other NEBOSH qualifications?
Yes, if you have achieved your IGC1 unit within the last five years (from unit declaration date) you are able to use your successful IGC1 result as an exemption for the IGC1 units within the following qualifications:
International Certificate in Construction Health and Safety
International Certificate in Fire Safety and Risk Management
The following units/qualifications may be used instead of Unit IGC1 (as long as the declaration date is within 5 years of the examination date for the first successful unit) to complete the International General Certificate in Occupational Safety and Health (March 2011 specification) qualification.
Unit IA (Pass, mark will be capped at 45%) from the International Diploma in Occupational Health and Safety
Unit IGC1 (Pass, mark achieved will be carried forward) from the International Certificate in Construction Health and Safety.
Unit IGC1 (Pass, mark achieved will be carried forward) from the International Certificate in Fire Safety and Risk Management
This allows students to continue with their studies without have to re-take units that they have already studied. Therefore, if you already hold any of the above units/qualifications you are already one-third of the way towards the NEBOSH International Certificate in Construction Health and Safety and/or the International Certificate in Fire Safety and Risk Management.
How do I claim exemption?
Please mark clearly on your registration form that you are claiming exemption or advise your course provider if they are completing the registration form on your behalf. This will enable NEBOSH to cross check your previous qualifications and will ensure that you automatically receive a qualification parchment on successful completion of the remaining units within the qualification. Please note to claim exemption all three units must have been declared within five years of the examination date of the final successful unit.
When does the five years run from?
The five years starts from the results declaration date (the date printed on the candidate’s unit certificate).
Why can’t certificates achieved over five years ago be used for exemption?
In designing qualifications NEBOSH is bound by statutory regulation. That means that we have to specify in our application to accredit a qualification with the regulatory body, the time period over which units can be linked together to form qualifications. Regulatory bodies do not set hard and fast rules regarding the time period in which a unit can be combined with other units and count towards a qualification. However, we need to demonstrate to them that the time period is valid.
In the case of health and safety law, which does change over time, five years was accepted in its accreditation of the International General Certificate (IGC).
Why doesn’t NEBOSH accept external qualifications as exemptions for NEBOSH units?
NEBOSH is unable to quality assure non-NEBOSH syllabuses as they may not be identical in level, content or emphasis. It would not be appropriate for us to award a qualification based on assessments that we cannot guarantee. For this reason, NEBOSH is only able to accept NEBOSH units or qualifications as exemption for NEBOSH qualifications.
Can candidates have the same unit counting towards more than one certificate level qualification?
Yes, provided all of the units making up the newest qualification were achieved in the five year period.
If I re-sit IGC1 and get a higher mark, will this affect the grade of a NEBOSH qualification which I took in the past?
Candidates do have the opportunity to improve their overall grade by re-sitting unitised examinations/assessments. However, candidates must inform NEBOSH in writing of their intention to re-sit a unit within one month of the date of issue of the result notification for the third successfully completed unit. If notification is not received your results will be declared and a qualification parchment will be issued to you.
Once a candidate’s qualification parchment has been issued, you will not be able to re-sit to improve your grade for that qualification.
If you would like any further information please consult the NEBOSH Guide to the International General Certificate in Occupational Health and Safety (March 2011 specification) which is available on our website publications shop www.nebosh.org.uk. We also recommend that you contact your course provider. Alternatively, please contact our customer service team on telephone number 0044 (0)116 263 4700 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.