IT students at British Computer Society (BCS) centres will be able to monitor their ITQ progress with an online self-assessment program from e-skills UK.

A partnership between e-skills, the founder of the ITQ, and the BCS will require candidates to use the e-skills Passport as of the 2nd November.

The Passport enables students to set an ITQ target profile before beginning training which will help training providers to plan and monitor progress. Users will be able to assess their existing skills and pinpoint any gaps, then validate unit achievements as they go, providing a portable record of progress.

Karen Price, Chief Executive, e-skills UK said: "Designed to provide training providers and employers with a unique overview of learners" technology skills and a way of recording their skills progress, over 15,000 people from more than 800 companies are already using e-skills Passport to boost business productivity".

David Clarke, BCS Chief Executive said: "Employers love ITQ because it can be tailored. However, with this flexibility comes the need for a tool to customise and manage the ITQ, which is where the e-skills Passport fits in".

He added: "Combining the functions of e-skills Passport with our own sophisticated systems will make our assess-train-assess approach to ITQ very straightforward. This move to combine e-skills Passport and ITQ benefits the candidate and provides the employer with a complete solution to its technology skills needs: e-skills Passport identifies the skills needs and ITQ provides the training solution. This unique agreement also makes the delivery particularly cost-effective for providers".

And in related news, research has revealed that Skills For Justice, part of the Skills for Business network, has an involvement with employers which is well above the national average.

The study was carried out among stakeholders as part of a wider assessment of the 25 employer-led Sector Skills Councils by Ipsos MORI on behalf of the Sector Skills Development Agency. 80% of respondents stated that they had very close or fairly close involvement with Skills for Justice over the last 12 months. Further, 68% said that they were satisfied with Skills for Justice's overall performance.

Dick Winterton, Chief Executive of Skills for Justice said: "I am very encouraged by the excellent findings of this research. At Skills for Justice we are committed to and enthusiastic about working with our stakeholders and we look forward to continuing to do so in the next stage of our development as a Sector Skills Council".

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Annabel Hardy.

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