NVQ vs Diploma

Discuss all things health and safety.

Moderator: Moderators

  • Advertisement


NVQ vs Diploma

Postby NeedAdvice » Wed Oct 09, 2013 6:59 pm

Hi,

I recently completed my NEBOSH National General Certificate to try and boost my experience but now I want to look at further education. I have a BA degree and had planned on completing a MA in health and safety through distance learning but when I approached a senior colleague of mine within our health and safety department he said he had little respect for people with 'letters after their name' and suggested I completed an NVQ.

Does anyone know which further education route for someone trying to break into a health and safety role would be best in the long term (Diploma, NVQ, Masters or anything else)?

Any advice would be greatly appreciated as, to be honest, I don't have a clue what to do!

Many Thanks.
NeedAdvice
Newbie
Newbie
 
Posts: 6
Joined: Wed Oct 09, 2013 3:21 pm

Advertisement

Re: NVQ vs Diploma

Postby Steve M » Wed Oct 09, 2013 8:45 pm

Welcome to the forum

I was looking into this this morning, the NVQ route is only any good if you are involved in Health and safety already and from what I can determine its best if you have a fair amount of decision / procedure making authority.

I was considering it because it looks easier and quicker than the Diploma, I would prefer the Diploma because you will have a broader knowledge in H&S at the end, not sure why your colleague has little respect for people with letters after their name, it means that someone has taken the time to learn their trade to a great extent and dedicated a lot of time and effort in the process, the NVQ means doing your job but will not give you such a broad level of knowledge should you decide to change direction.

I am still undecided, will see how my recent H&S opportunity pans out.

Steve
Steve M
Member
Member
 
Posts: 289
Joined: Mon Mar 11, 2013 7:28 pm
Location: Bristol
Industry Sector: Warehousing and distribution

Re: NVQ vs Diploma

Postby JAGordon » Wed Oct 09, 2013 9:20 pm

To be honest i dont think it matters which route you take, it is dependant on your own preferences/experiences? I.e. the NVQ requires a lot of evidence in relation to your safety experience, my boss has just completed the NVQ and took him approx 12 months.

I have opted to go for the Nebosh Diploma via a distant learning method, i have only been in safety roles for 4 years so providing a lot of evidence to satisfy the NVQ would have been more challenging for me than the Diploma.

In terms of job prospects, both are well recognised and will put you in good stead, it also allows for Dip Iosh status which in itself will go along way when searching for new roles.

Also costing, i know my distance learning Diploma has cost significantly less than the NVQ my boss undertook so that may be a factor you have to consider also. Either way expect to put some serious hours in.
JAGordon
Student
Student
 
Posts: 33
Joined: Mon Jan 28, 2013 11:38 am
Industry Sector: Manufacturing, Defence, Construction

Re: NVQ vs Diploma

Postby terryw » Thu Oct 10, 2013 8:23 am

I would agree the NVQ would be the most suitable option if you are already in a position to influence and implement improvements in your current workplace. There is no quick and easy route option, the knowledge that you acquire from the NVQ route can be made specific and tailored to your industry, and in my experience is transferable
User avatar
terryw
Member
Member
 
Posts: 283
Joined: Thu Mar 09, 2006 9:00 am
Location: North York's

Re: NVQ vs Diploma

Postby TZsafety » Thu Oct 10, 2013 9:54 am

If you have the cash and will be accepted on the MSc course that is the course I would personally choose over the NVQ and Diploma.

I was lucky enough that my Company put me through the NVQ and NEBOSH Diploma but I would jump at the chance of doing a MSc if they offered to pay! I cannot afford it and at the moment I don't think it would really benefit me career - wise. Sounds daft but my friend has a Masters (In Business which is completely different I know) and he cannot get even get interviews.

Perhaps the Senior guy who told you that is a little envious of you if he hasn't the Masters?
TZsafety
Student
Student
 
Posts: 73
Joined: Mon Sep 02, 2013 4:58 pm

Re: NVQ vs Diploma

Postby Fletcher » Thu Oct 10, 2013 10:37 am

You need to look at yourself, what are you good at?
1) Are you academically inclined - if Yes then the diploma/MSc is a possibility, if no then I would advise against them.
2) Are you in a H&S position, if yes would you be able to fulfil the requirements of an NVQ, demonstrating how you have implemented, influenced and managed safety related issues?
If NO then how would you be able to demonstrate the above, I cannot see how you would be able to complete your modules -I may be wrong.
3) If your ultimate aim is to become a chartered practitioner you will need a recognised qualification (Diploma/MSc/Open Assessment) and documented experience (NVQ, Skills Portfolio) so you will
have to demonstrate both facets either way.
4) If you look at the publications regarding salary (IOSH) you will find that having a H&S related MSc appears to lead to bigger salary and higher positions as does being Chartered - there are exceptions
but in general I find that is true.

I personally found that the diploma stood me in good stead, I know two people who had the MSc but neither of them were chartered because they were still getting the experience they needed.
I would say you should do what you want to do, but it is difficult to get a foot in the door at the moment and if you search this site for "getting started in H&S" you will see lots of people are trying.

Good Luck

I pe
Fletcher
Grand Shidoshi
Grand Shidoshi
 
Posts: 2440
Joined: Mon Feb 14, 2011 10:03 am
Industry Sector: Retired

Re: NVQ vs Diploma

Postby Stonehenge » Fri Oct 11, 2013 7:24 am

It seems to come up a lot this discussion.

I looked at both the NEBOSH and NVQ routes when considering the next step. I did the health & wellbeing certificate after not doing any sort of stufy since the early 90's and although the exam wasn't horrible, it's not something you'd put yourself through for fun.

Whatever route you take, as has been said, you need to have the inclination to that way of working. If you haven't had any experience or exposure to H&S gnerally as part of your role, you may struggle getting evidence, but equally, some people who did the NVQ had nothing in place before doing it, and then did the course and actually implemented processes and policies because of the NVQ, so they kind of gained some expereince as well.

The NEBOSH is acedemic and it proves a broad range of knowledge which you may find useful if you are transferring skills. The NVQ in my eyes is also transferrable although the evidence you use is specific to the job you are doing at the time, but the principles are the same as they are principles of H&S you would apply anywhere.

So it really comes down to what your preferred method of learning is versus your level of experience.

Either course leads you to being able to be Grad IOSH status, the only difference to the chartered route being that if you did the NEBOSH you have to produce a portfolio (so evidence like the NVQ), and if you have the NVQ, you need to complete the open book assessment (like NEBOSH). You can gain chartered status both ways.

So if your ultimate aim is to become chartered, then the diploma route will help you get there. If you got chance to also do a masters, then that is a massive bonus. I would suggest your colleague is just jealous of this prospect. Why is having letters after your name anything to be ashamed of? It proves you have backed up any experiecne with knowledge and qualifications and lets face it, how many jobs have your seen in H&S that don't ask for qualifications either to degree level / diploma level or chartered level?

I'd so go for whatever you think will work for you, and for your own benefit, as that is the most important thing int he long run.

Angie.
Practice makes perfect, apparently.....
User avatar
Stonehenge
Snr Member
Snr Member
 
Posts: 492
Joined: Tue Jul 31, 2012 1:47 pm
Location: Midlands
Industry Sector: Industrial Control Systems

Re: NVQ vs Diploma

Postby NeedAdvice » Wed Oct 16, 2013 7:48 am

Hi,

Thank you all so much for your advice. I have decided to to go down the diploma route as I am more academically minded and I don't think my position has enough H&S relevance to complete an NVQ. I work offshore in the oil and gas industry so I'll need to do it via distance learning. Does anyone know of any course providers? This may seem like an obvious question but is there a difference between a NEBOSH Diploma and a University H&S Diploma?

Then the only challenge now will be convincing someone to employ me!

Many Thanks
NeedAdvice
Newbie
Newbie
 
Posts: 6
Joined: Wed Oct 09, 2013 3:21 pm

Re: NVQ vs Diploma

Postby TZsafety » Wed Oct 16, 2013 10:26 am

RRC seem to be mentioned a few times as a good training provider.

Not sure what the difference is between Uni and NEBOSH perhaps some of the syllabus covers different areas / more diverse perhaps

I'd stick with your off shore job - lots of people I am aware of trying to get into this industry and well paid!

Good luck
TZsafety
Student
Student
 
Posts: 73
Joined: Mon Sep 02, 2013 4:58 pm

Re: NVQ vs Diploma

Postby Thommo » Wed Oct 16, 2013 11:32 am

Interesting topic as I am going to start MSc next year distance learning.

If funding is a concern regarding the MSc have a look at Continual Professional Development Loans. They are only available through Barclays and Co-op but worthwhile looking into. There have been a few other threads recently on MSc in which this had been brought up.

Like others have stated - it's up to you! With the information you have now you can make a decision you'll hopefully be comfortable with. :)

With regards to your original post, I wouldn't be concerned about the senior colleague and the comments made about letters after names. As others hace said, jealousy is probably the cause. If they could have letters after their name they probably would, but because they can't they dismiss it. At the end of which ever route you choose, whether it be Diploma or MSc, they lead to higher membership of IOSH & IIRSM. So, no matter which route you take, you can have letters after your name as I imagine you will want to reach that level - no point in doing qualifications and not taking advantage of your ability and credentials ;)
"Every day we make it, we'll make it the best we can" Jasper Newton 'Jack' Daniel
User avatar
Thommo
Member
Member
 
Posts: 290
Joined: Wed Jan 02, 2013 2:37 pm
Location: From Hull - now in Leeds
Industry Sector: Construction

Re: NVQ vs Diploma

Postby Fletcher » Wed Oct 16, 2013 1:09 pm

NEBOSH is the industry recognised qualification and will be generally quoted in job adverts at certificate or diploma level with or equivalent on some adverts.
If you look on the IOSH website you will find what university diplomas/degrees are recognised by IOSH as equivalent to the NEBOSH diploma.
You really want to ensure that your qualification will be IOSH recognised as it will simplify your acceptance to Grad IOSH (if you apply once you have passed)
Fletcher
Grand Shidoshi
Grand Shidoshi
 
Posts: 2440
Joined: Mon Feb 14, 2011 10:03 am
Industry Sector: Retired

Re: NVQ vs Diploma

Postby NeedAdvice » Tue Dec 17, 2013 9:37 pm

I have since been accepted on a distance learning masters course. Thank you all so much for your advice!
NeedAdvice
Newbie
Newbie
 
Posts: 6
Joined: Wed Oct 09, 2013 3:21 pm

Next

Return to General Discussion

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Bing [Bot], Google Adsense [Bot], Majestic-12 [Bot] and 13 guests