What is it?
The National Institute of Qualifications (hereinafter INCUAL) was created by Royal Decree 375/1999 of 5 March 1999. It is the technical instrument, endowed with capacity and independence, which supports the Spanish General Council of Vocational Education and Training in order to attain the objectives of the National System for Qualifications and Vocational Education and Training (known in Spanish as SNCFP).
The Organic Act 5/2002 of 19 June 2002 on Qualifications and Vocational Education and Training confers on the INCUAL the responsibility for defining, creating and updating the National Catalogue of Professional Qualifications and the corresponding Modular Catalogue of Vocational Education and Training.
The governing body of the INCUAL is the General Council of Vocational Education and Training though the INCUAL is placed under the control of the Secretary General of Education (Ministry of Education, Culture and Sport), as laid down in Royal Decree 1553/2004 of 20 June 2004.
Objectives and Functions
- To observe qualifications and their evolution.
- To determine qualifications.
- To accredit qualifications.
- To develop the integration of professional qualifications.
- Follow-up and assessment of the National Program on Vocational Training.
- To propose the establishment and management of the National System for Professional Qualifications.
- To establish criteria for the requirements and characteristics due to be met by professional qualifications in order to be incorporated into the National System for Professional Qualifications.
- To establish a basic methodology to identify professional competences and to define a model to be adopted by professional qualifications in order to be incorporated into the National System for Professional Qualifications.
- To propose a system for the professional accreditation and recognition.
- To establish a procedure to involve regional institutions of qualifications as well as other social agents in the definition of the National Catalogue of Professional Qualifications and in the update of sectoral demands.
- To establish criteria about basic methods to be observed in the assessment of competences and to establish criteria for the procedure to award accreditations by competent authorities.
- To propose procedures for the establishment of modalities for the accreditation of professional competences from the National System for Professional Qualifications as well as their update.
- To develop, as a basic instrument serving the General Council of Vocational Education and Training, essentially technical activities of vocational education and training both in Spain and the European Community such as studies, reports, comparative analysis, information collection, bibliographies and scientific seminars.
- To facilitate the functional interrelations between training activities of the different subsystems of Vocational Education and Training (and the diplomas and certificates they generate) and professional classifications systems created by collective bargaining.
- To carry out the necessary tasks to establish a reference framework for the general programming of all subsystems and, at the same time, to support the legislative process of Vocational Education and Training.
- To propose the necessary measures to regulate the system for correspondences, validations and equivalences among the three VET subsystems (initial, unemployed and continuing), including work experience.
- To support the implementation and expansion of the new training contract by creating a training development model which reinforces the qualification-oriented role attributed to the contract by law.
- To improve the design and content of the occupational aptitude certificates. Thus facilitating standardization and correspondence between certificates and competence units (associated with modules from professional diplomas of Initial Vocational Educational And Training).
- To propose, through the General Council of Vocational Education and Training, the definition of the scope of the modules from Unemployed Vocational Education and Training, so that the worker who takes those modules can capitalize them through the corresponding occupational aptitude certificate.
- To make proposals about the certification of continuing vocational education and training actions related to the National System for Qualifications through their integration in the System of Professional Certificates, in legal and operative terms.
INCUAL is divided into four areas (Professional Observatory, Methodological Research and Organization of the National System for Professional Qualifications, Qualifications Design, Information and Resource Management) governed by a director:
The directorship is responsible for the coordination and encouragement of its work and activities with the following competences:
- To make and present to the Permanent Commission of the General Council of Vocational Education and Training the proposal for the programmes of annual activities.
- To develop the programmes of activities approved by the Permanent Commission of the General Council of Vocational Education and Training.
- To present all required reports to the Permanent Commission or General Council Plenary.
- To act on behalf of INCUAL before organizations and bodies related to its functions.
The appointment and resignation of the INCUALs Director will be carried out by Order of the Minister of Education, Science and Sports, with the previous consent of the Minister of Work and Social Affairs, and with compulsory report by the General Council of Vocational Education and Training.
Professional Observatory Area
- To establish the necessary procedures and agreements to guarantee the cooperation and a reciprocal information flow among the different professional observatories.
The agreements shall include the participation of social agents, with whom the technical specifications of the information to send and receive as well as their minimum contents shall be defined.
- To supply information about the evolution of job supply and demand, occupations, and profiles in the labour market, taking into account, among others, the professional classification systems established by collective bargaining.
Person in charge:
Methodological Research and Organization of the National System for Professional Qualifications Area
- To propose a procedure for the assessment, recognition and accreditation of the professional competence.
- To do the follow-up and assessment of each qualification and its associated vocational education and training.
Persons in charge:
Head of the Methodological Research and Organization of the National System for Professional Qualifications Area:
Ignacio Pérez de Mier.
Head of Innovation, Quality and Evaluation Service:
Mª Isabel García Chicote.
Head of Accreditation and Training Integration Service:
Mª Luz Rúiz Junco.
Head of Methodological Research Service:
Marcial Poveda Cordero.
Qualifications Design Area
- To define, create and update the National Catalogue of Professional Qualifications.
- To determine the modules associated with each qualification in order to establish the Modular Catalogue of Vocational Education and Training, where the basic requirements to be fulfilled by the learning context in order to guarantee its quality are included.
Persons in charge:
Head of Qualifications Design Area:
Mercedes Lucio-Villegas de la Cuadra.
Head of Coordination of Qualifications Design Service:
Virginia Casado Marcos.
Head of Technical and Social Qualifications Service:
Mª Ángeles Canorea Ruíz.
Information and Resource Management Area
- To manage the resources and information of INCUAL.
Person in charge:
Head of Information and Resource Management Service:
Ricardo Barahona Higes.
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