For certified and experienced hairdressers who have the desire to advance in their careers as well as provide quality assurance and assessment, getting a hairdressing assessor certification is a requirement. Taking assessor courses is the first step towards becoming a hairdressing assessor. There are a variety of required and supplementary courses that hairdressers must take to become a hairdressing assessor.
A1 Assessor Award
The first qualification required is the A1 assessor award. Hairdressers who complete the A1 course gain skills in assessing candidates who wish to obtain an NVQ (National Vocational Qualification) certificate in hairdressing within a training centre. Completion of the course leads to a level 3 qualification. Skills to be learnt in the course include development of plans for assessing competence of candidates, judging evidence against criteria in order to make an assessment decision and provision of feedback and support to candidates.
Prior to taking up the A1 assessor award course, a hairdresser must first have at least an NVQ level 2 certificate in hairdressing and a portfolio of evidence or at least two years of experience. Candidates typically hold supervisory or managerial level positions in the workplace.
A2 Assessor Award
The second qualification that is often obtained by would-be hairdressing assessors is the A2 assessor award, another level 3 qualification. The A2 course provides skills to hairdressing assessor candidates in terms of NVQ assessment in the workplace using observation as the primary method. The course provides skills for formulation and review of plans for assessing candidate performance, assessment of a candidate's knowledge against set standards and implementation of an assessment decision and feedback delivery.
An higher certification (level 4) that a hairdressing assessor may want to take for career advancement is V1, or the certificate in conducting internal quality assurance of the assessment process. The course provides skills for evaluation and implementation of internal assessment and quality assurance systems, provision of support for hairdressing assessors, monitoring of an assessor's performance and compliance with external quality assurance standards. The V1 certification allows the hairdressing assessor to work as an internal verifier (works at assessment centres).
Hairdressing assessors who want to work as external verifiers (verifiers who work for an external awarding body) need to take a V2 certification course. The V2 course provides skills in conducting external quality assurance of the assessment process. As opposed to the V1, the V2 award allows a verifier to conduct quality assurance work similar to that of a V1 recipient except that she can work outside of an assessment centre and into workplaces such as a salon.