How do Microsoft certifications relate to academic or vocational qualifications


This is a question, I seem to be asked a lot at present….

How do Microsoft certifications relate to academic or vocational qualifications?

If your an existing Microsoft IT Academy members, we have lots of information on certification mapping available in the IT Academy members-only site that gives an overview. However it is also possible by accessing the QCF Database. This database holds information relating to qualifications and units that are approved by Ofqual. Generally this means that they are available for delivery as components of academic or vocational programs of learning. Microsoft certifications relate to Units on the QCF.

Here are a few pointers:

· Microsoft certifications are “Units on the QCF”

· Most Microsoft certifications are on the QCF

· It is easy to search on the QCF to find which Microsoft certifications are listed

· The information can be exported in a spread sheet

· The QCF list the Units and any Qualifications that contain them

· IT certifications are listed under 6.1 for IT professional and 6.2 for User

· IT Professional Units are technical e.g. Windows 7 or Server 2008

· IT User Units are applications like Word or PowerPoint

· Units have a credit value and a level

· Microsoft Units are contained in the ITQ, BETEC and many vocational qualifications. More recently, the Microsoft Technology Associate has been included or aligned in Apprenticeships and Computer Science GCSEs

The following information shows how to check the detail of Microsoft Units and their possible inclusion in Qualifications:

Go to


6.1 and 6.2 cover ICT. Search on both. 6.1 lists IT Professional Qualifications (Practitioner)and 6.2 Lists IT User qualifications. You will be able to view or export to a spread sheet. The data includes Level and Credit values. Obviously it is possible to search for Microsoft in the exported data.


Double click on the Unit Reference number and it will display the Learning Outcomes


Use the link half way down the page, “View Unit’s Qualifications” and it will list all the qualifications that contain the Unit.


Select the Unit and this now gives more information on the qualification


And if you continue to scroll down the Ofqual Qualification page there is an additional link right at the bottom to the Performance Figures


Microsoft certifications can attract Performance Points as Units within a Qualification

An alternative way is to search for Microsoft at the initial stage by entering “Microsoft” in the title box. The list can then be accessed in the same way as above.

The following document “Curriculum mapping to Standards” gives an overview of mapping.

ITSkillsman are a Microsoft Academic Service Partner (MASP) and are able to provide independent advice on the inclusion of Microsoft certifications in programmes of learning.

For more information please contact Mike Evans on 01460 281114 or 07831 600375

e-mail or visit or

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