Youth Achievement Awards

The Youth Achievement Awards are individual learning awards that provide a framework to support quality work with young people aged 14+. They offer formal recognition and accreditation for young peoples’ achievements

Certification of Youth Achievement Awards During Covid-19

As lockdown eases, schools re-open and youth work returns we have resumed our usual quality assurance processes, as agreed by SQA, for the resulting and certification of awards. The standardisation dates and submission deadlines apply. The difference is that there will be no physical standardisation meetings in 2020, all sampling will be done in an electronic/online format that is agreed on a case by case basis with the Operating Agency submitting. Also, for the time being all candidate work must be retained for a period of six months from the submission date.

Please note: The Youth Achievement Awards are an SQA customised award and as such we try to mirror SQA quality assurance processes as closely as possible. The SQA have now advised that the retention of candidate evidence has been extended from 3 weeks to 6 months. What this means in practice is that all Youth Achievement Awards submitted for resulting must be retained and available for sampling for six months from the submission date. This allows Youth Scotland be more flexible in the way we quality assure and result submissions. 

Youth Achievement Awards (YAA) offer formal recognition and accreditation for young peoples’ achievements.

Youth Achievement Awards are inclusive and suitable for young people with a wide range of abilities and interests. They are easy to use and incorporate into your existing or planned activities. They are delivered in a range of settings including youth and community projects, schools and colleges. They follow a plan-do-review process which enables young people to more effectively recognise and articulate their learning and achievements within different contexts, increasing self-esteem, improving motivation and keeping them engaged with learning.

The YAAs are a Scottish Qualifications Authority (SQA) customised award which, supports the aim and purpose of Curriculum for Excellence, the youth work outcomes, closing the attainment gap and the Developing the Young Workforce agenda.

They can be tailored to support any activity and provide a recognised, SCQF levelled award.

YAAs encourage reflection and critical thinking through self and peer assessment, keeping young people engaged while helping them to develop skills for learning, life and work.

The Awards recognise four levels of responsibility taken by young people participating in activities that interest them.

Key Features of the Award:

The Youth Achievement Awards

  • Are easy to use
  • Can be incorporated into existing or planned activities
  • Can be used in a range of settings
  • Are for young people age 14+ (16+ for the Platinum level)
  • Have 4 levels based on the responsibility a young person takes within activities
  • Can be accessed at the most appropriate level for the young person
  • Help to evidence youth work outcomes
  • Are inclusive and suitable for young people with a range of interests and abilities
  • Are a Scottish Qualifications Authority (SQA) customised award
  • Are Scottish Credit and Qualifications Framework (SCQF) credit scored and leveled 4 7
  • Appear on a young person’s Scottish Qualificiations Certificate alongside their academic achievements
  • Placed on Insight and carry tariff points
  • Support the aims, values, purpose and implementation of Curriculum for Excellence
  • The Gold award carries 14 UCAS points

Award Criteria

Level   Minimum Age   Minimum Hours   Minimum Responsibility   SCQF Level  SCQF Credit Points 
Bronze  14   60 Taking Part 4
Silver 14    90 Assisting 5 11   
Gold   14  120 Leading 6 14 
Platinum  16   135 Peer Education 16 

For everyone involved in community based youth work. Find out more about what we do and apply for membership.