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Tell us a bit about yourself & your role/client group

I am a professionally qualified SDS Careers Adviser who has worked in the Falkirk area for over 20 years. Currently, I work in partnership with Forth Valley College to deliver group work and 1:1 interventions to students of all ages and stages of learning in order to support them to develop their Career Management Skills.

How do you use the SCQF to provide careers advice and guidance to your clients?

I use the SCQF to help empower people to make informed decisions about their learning and career options. For example, many students I encounter have had a negative experience of past education and have lost confidence in their ability to learn.

This can range from school-age pupils who have come to college on exceptional entry to adult returners. I use the Framework to highlight that there is always potential to learn and to show individuals how they can progress to navigate their path through college and beyond with confidence in order to reach their goals.

I also use it to discuss college course progression and university articulation options, to help students who have moved to Scotland to understand the Scottish education system, and to support students who have taken a break in education to quickly see where they can ‘jump back in’ and continue to progress, reassuring them that no previous experience is wasted.

When students withdraw from courses or choose to leave college I use the SCQF along with other resources such as My World of Work to help them navigate the entry requirements for jobs and training as well as demonstrate how they can continue to learn through options such as Modern and Graduate Apprenticeships.


How useful do you find the SCQF when working with your clients?

I find the SCQF extremely useful. The effectiveness of the Framework is that the information is presented clearly, it can be used with any customer, and can be tailored to their individual needs.

It demonstrates where they have been, where they are now, and where they could go in the future, supporting them to have confidence in their learning choices and progression options, as well as helping them to make informed career decisions.


If you’ve used any SCQF resources (e.g. SCQF website, Framework diagram postcard, post-school leaflet, Old v New, Qualifications Can Cross Boundaries), how do they help you in your work?

I’ve used a variety of the resources accessed from the SCQF website including the Framework diagram which directly correlates with the college-level courses so provides me with a simple, straightforward tool to help aid discussion around the students’ needs.

I use Old v New to help older students understand where their previous qualifications sit on the Framework and Qualifications Can Cross Boundaries to help students who have moved from elsewhere in the UK, when they are unsure what options their qualifications open up to them in Scotland.

Another useful area of the website is the information on Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL), which I use to demonstrate to students that learning can come from all areas of life and not just formal education. This helps me to encourage customers to feel confident about their existing strengths and experiences as well as to facilitate discussion on how they can continue to develop these through future learning.


In your opinion, how does the SCQF help people of all ages to navigate learner & career pathways?

It helps customers realise that there are different ways to learn and gives them a clear structure to help facilitate their own learning needs with confidence.



“When looking for a job I used to be put off applying as I don’t have Highers. Gillian used the SCQF website to help me understand that there are different routes into jobs and showed me how the college courses I plan to do can give me the equivalent qualification to help me get to where I want to go.”

 Danielle McMillan, Access to Computing (SCQF Level 5), Forth Valley College­­­­­­­­

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