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Document Title:              Simulation and Role-Play Policy

Document Number:       BEC5

Author:                             Vonley Joseph

Change Authority:          The Board of Directors

Change History

Version Date Reason for change Change by
0.1 1st June 2016 First draft Vonley Joseph
 0.2 1st June 2018 Updated Vonley Joseph

Change Mechanism

Any person seeking to alter this document must consult the author before making any change.

Bob Etherington Ltd Change Authority must endorse any alterations to the approved version of this document before any wider dissemination of the altered document.

The person making the alteration must indicate every change between the previous (approved) document version and the altered document version.


The copyright in this work is vested in Bob Etherington Ltd, and the document is issued in confidence for the purpose for which it is supplied. It must not be reproduced in whole or in part or used for tendering or manufacturing purposes except under agreement or with the consent in writing of Bob Etherington Ltd and then only on condition that this notice is included in any such reproduction. No information as to the contents or subject matter of this document or any part thereof arising directly or indirectly there from shall be given orally or in writing or communicated in any manner whatsoever to any third party being an individual firm or company or any employee thereof without the prior consent in writing of Bob Etherington Ltd.Copyright© Bob Etherington Ltd, 2018. All Rights  Reserved

NVQ candidates should collect all their evidence from the workplace. However, there may be very rare occasions where this is not possible and simulation may be needed. But before deciding to use simulations all other sources of evidence should first be examined that simulation is most cost effective and an appropriate course.

Any source of performance evidence other than the candidate’s normal, natural occurring work activities could be through a ‘simulation’.

Whatever the circumstance in which simulation is used, care must be taken that the assessment meets the full requirements of the national standards and the evidence requirements. The assessor must be confident that the competence can be transferred to a range of working environments.

Reasons for using simulations could include: confidentiality, safety and privacy.


Some examples may include:

  • Future requirements such as new technologies and work practices and the candidate’s workplace do not offer opportunities to provide appropriate evidence.
  • Infrequent events such as annual stock take and waiting for the event to occur could delay assessment.
  • Avoiding hazards to the candidates as others in the working environment e.g. cleaning procedures in cases of chemical contamination.
  • Life threatening conditions such as resuscitation of a person who has stopped breathing.
  • Situations in which collecting evidence would intrude on personal privacy or confidentiality, such as counselling sessions.
  • When simulations are used for assessing competence for the purpose of national certification, it is vital that they are set up to reflect real activities and conditions.
  • Evidence requirements will often specify where simulations are not acceptable.  Assessors should be aware using a high proportion of simulation could call into question the credibility of assessment.

When considering simulations, the costs of setting up radical simulations can be considerable and simulations should therefore not be considered as a cheap alternative.

In order to ensure simulations are used appropriately will make sure relevant evidence can be gathered and they are used only when necessary. 

Please follow the guidelines below:

  • Before considering simulations, all sources of gathering, identifying evidence should be explored – i.e. use of other work placements, past experience (up to 2 years), job rotations.
  • If after exploring all available avenues, simulation appears the only way evidence can be gathered; please consider what simulation/ situation will be needed to cover the national standard and performance criteria of the relevant unit (element) and outline how and why this simulation can be organised.
  • When information gathered regarding the need for simulation, and the details outlined, contact the Internal Verifier who will discuss the need and if applicable process of the simulation.
  • When a simulation is arranged to be used as an evidence gathering method, an Internal Verifier will be present to ensure the process is fair, is appropriate to the situation and will gather the evidence required.
  • Prior to the simulation taking place, the Internal Verifier will liaise with the External Verifier and Awarding Body to ensure guidelines and national standards are met.
  • If simulations are to be used, candidates must be informed of what will happen throughout the process and who will be present at the simulation and the candidate must agree to simulations being used as the identified way of gathering information.
  • Assessors to remember simulations are to be considered as a last resort and all other sources of gathering the relevant evidence should be explored first.
  • Use and process of simulations will be monitored and discussed via the Management Group and Standardisation Meeting.