The Training Foundations response to the IITT Announcement - 28 Nov 2008

To download a full, printable pdf version of  our statement,  please click here, pdf - 85Kb

ALSO - to download our comments on the IITT's FAQ document of 9 December 2008, please click here (pdf, 49Kb)

We view the surprise changes to IITT certification and membership, made without consultation with its membership as undermining its credibility as a professional body. We believe the retrospective downgrading of membership levels to be unprecedented for a 'professional body'. They are demeaning to the 11,000+ IT Trainers that have invested resources and personal effort to achieve TAP qualifications over the last 10 years at the specific recommendation of the IITT. As recently as September 2008, the IITT was still recommending IITT certification based on TAP courses on its website.


The Announcement threatens retrospective impact to many members. We believe this to be a ‘first’ for a UK professional body. The IITT has cancelled its established membership rules and Certification programme based on TAP qualifications. Now, IITT certification is solely based on a new (chargeable) IITT Trainer Performance Monitoring & Assessment Service, TPMAS.


TPMAS assessment is aligned to qualifications devised by Lifelong Learning UK for the Further Education (Lifelong Learning) Sector, launched in the Autumn of 2007. A TPMAS Assessment contributes to a ‘Preparing to Teach in the Lifelong Learning Sector’ (PTTLS) qualification awarded by OCR, which involves a total of 60 hours of learning. More information about PTTLS can be obtained by reviewing the OCR Centre Handbook available for download at: OCR Centre Handbook

In the Qualification Profile in its Centre Handbook, OCR describes PTTLS as being suitable for:

“Those who wish to enter the field of teaching in the Lifelong Learning sector. It will act as a foundation for those with no previous experience of teaching who wish to extend their professional skills and understanding.”

Hence, a TPMAS Assessment gives credit towards a basic level of qualification, specifically devised for the Further Education and state funded training environment. We believe it very unlikely to provide much value for experienced IT Training specialists working across the private and public sectors.

We, like many IITT members, are perplexed as to why the IITT has replaced its previous Certification programme with a scheme covering Assessment of delivery skills only and aligned to the FE sector.

Non-recognition of TAP certificates for IITT membership above Associate grade

The IITT now only recognises TAP certificate or Diploma holders for Associate Level membership. It this has downgraded the membership status for all trainers holding a TAP Diploma (Rated at Level 5-equivalency)to the entry-level professional grade of Associate.  Contrast this with IITT Chief Executive Colin Steed’s comment (Aug 2006): “Achieving the Diploma in Learning & Development should be the objective of all IT trainers.” !!!

What you can do if you are unhappy with the IITT announcement

Current or potential IITT members who object to being coerced may choose to engage with an alternative national professional body which actively welcomes TAP-qualified learning and development professionals at all membership grades. In 2007 TAP Qualifications were formally adopted by the British Institute for Learning and Development as granting eligibility for membership at Associate, Member and Fellow (ABILD MBILD and FBILD) grades. 

For further details see:

Preferential introductory membership arrangements are available to TAP-qualified applicants.  We point out that the British Institute for Learning and Development is an independent registered charity and operates on an entirely non-profit basis. This status means that the Institute can make objective membership decisions without a commercial agenda or sector bias. It is operated on conventional Institute lines which means that the membership is consulted before major policy changes are made.

Further information about membership options for TAP-qualified IT Trainers can be obtained from the British Institute for Learning and Development website: