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Recognising Professional Qualifications in NFQ

Alignment


QQI facilitates the recognition of certain professional awards in the NFQ (National Framework of Qualifications) for professional bodies. We do this through a process known as 'alignment'.

Implementation of the Policy and Criteria for Recognising Professional Awards within the National Framework of Qualifications has been suspended pending resolution of the uncertainty about the extent of QQI’s legal power to recognise awards within the Framework.

Our policy and criteria for the alignment of professional awards are contained in the following document:

Policy and Criteria for Recognising Professional Awards within the National Framework of Qualifications
Beartas agus Critéir maidir le Dámhachtainí Gairmiúla a Aithint laistigh den Chreat Náisiúnta Cáilíochtaí

The policy and criteria will be supported by guidelines we will produce from time to time and publish on this website.

Alignment is not directly relevant to EU Directive 2005/36/EC. This directive relates to professional recognition of foreign qualifications.

Recognition in NFQ

Alignment of professional awards to the NFQ facilitates recognition of the relationship between a professional award and other qualifications (of Irish or non-Irish awarding bodies) in the NFQ (eg Bachelor’s Degree).

Specifically, the alignment process here determines whether a professional award from an eligible body can be recognised in the NFQ where a professional Award-type Descriptor has been determined. 

The policy depends on these descriptors, as outlined here: Award-type Descriptors (Award Class: Professional) For the Alignment of Professional Awards at NFQ Levels 7, 8 and 9.

The alignment policy provides for the professional award-type descriptors to be 'translated' prior to use by a particular profession.

More detailed guidelines are being developed but for guidance, the following “translation” has been adopted by QQI for use with professional qualifications in accountancy:

Award-type Descriptors (Award Class: Professional) For the Alignment of Professional Awards at NFQ Levels 7, 8 and 9 Translated for Use in the Alignment of Professional Qualifications in Accountancy

Foreign Professional Qualifications

If you have obtained a professional qualification outside Ireland and want to practise here you need to contact the relevant competent authority. Click here for more information.