NVQ courses – what are portfolios?

When taking an NVQ course, it’s important that all achievements are logged so that all evidence of tasks performed is kept in one place. The portfolio can be on paper or in the form of an ePortfolio, stored online, or you can use both formats.

It’s crucial that the portfolio is well organized and easy to follow – your NVQ assessor should be able to help you. Tracking sheets can be included so information within your portfolio can be found. The point is that when it comes to being finally assessed you need the content in your portfolio to be easy to find. You certainly don’t want crucial evidence disappearing under a heap of loose papers.

The evidence included must demonstrate your abilities, so don’t be too concerned about adding irrelevant content such as training manuals for example. Keep in mind that the evidence included should demonstrate your abilities and nothing else.

Usually you will need to include the ‘Declaration of Authenticity’ which is signed by the NVQ course student to state that the portfolio work is their own.

So how should I plan my portfolio/ePortfolio?


Firstly, it is advisable that you discuss all course content with your NVQ assessor or employer:

-discuss the course content (units) and the order in which you would like to complete them.
– read through all information related to each unit and ensure you understand what is being asked of you.
– perhaps you can put together evidence of tasks/work that cover multiple units.
– collecting evidence can be time consuming and needs forethought, so it’s advisable to plan ahead.
-discuss how to gain evidence with relevant members of staff involved so they can make adequate time for you.
– it’s essential you are clear of your unit objectives and gather the relevant evidence.

So what should I include in my portfolio/ePortfolio

– (if paper based) ensure you include your name, centre/employer, and NVQ course details at the front.

– (if online based) carefully name each file and keep all files together in one folder so the relevant documents can be found easily. Each unit can have its own folder.

– Each unit should be clearly signed off by verifiers and assessors. A contents sheet with all signed off units is advised.

– Declaration of authenticity, as mentioned before, should be signed off by you stating that all the work is your own.

– Include your CV so any verifiers and NVQ assessors are aware of your employment/academic history. Be sure to highlight all tasks/roles undertaken.

– You may want to include a departmental chart depicting your current role and members of staff who you report to and who reports to you.

– Include all details of witnesses and how they are involved with your course.

– You may want to include an index for all evidence collected so each piece is easily found.

What can I use for evidence?

– Word documents – witness/personal statements, emails and other correspondence (if applicable).
– Spreadsheets – observations, Q&As
– Audio content of performance conversations