The Turkish Vocational Qualifications Institute's Examination, Assessment, Evaluation and Certification Regulation ("Regulation") has entered into effect. The Regulation was prepared by the Vocational Qualifications Institute's ("Institute") and published in Official Gazette number 29503 on 15 October 2015. The recent Regulation repeals the Regulation on Professional Competency, Examination and Certification, published in Official Gazette number 27096 on 30 December 2008. The Regulation outlines procedures and principles for the Vocational Qualifications Institute's examination and assessment of applications by certification institutions and their authorization, as well as procedures and principles for examinations, evaluations and Professional Competence Certification.

The Regulation is a simplified version of its predecessor with respect to its scope. The former regulation also dealt with the National Qualifications Framework ("NQF"). However, this has now become subject to another regulation (published in Official Gazette number 29507 on 19 October 2015).

Only certification institutions authorized by the Institute can conduct examinations and certifications by means of the national competences. No person, institute or institution can make any examination or certification regarding the national competences unless permitted or authorized by the Institute (Article 4).

The Regulation outlines conditions which must be met to be granted authorization (Article 6). The conditions are more detailed than under the previous regulation. Significant authorization criteria include:

  • Accreditation in the field of employee certification by accreditation institutes which have a multi-lateral recognition agreement with the Turkish Accreditation Agency or European Accreditation Council.
  • Not having authorization revoked by the Institution during the last two years.
  • Not employing people who can damage impartiality principles during examination, assessment, evaluation and certification activities, or who cause conflicts of interest.

To become an authorized certification institution, a pre-application must first be made to the Institute. Institutions then complete the accreditation phase and become eligible to lodge an authorization application. If the Administrative board is satisfied the authorization applicant meets the certification criteria, a contract will be signed between the Institute and the relevant institution. Authorized certification institutions are published on the Institute's website.

Audit processes undergo changes under the new Regulation. Certification institutions must submit annual activity reports to the Institute. The Institute audits certification institutes once a year in accordance with the annual plan. If deemed necessary, the Institute can also conduct unscheduled investigations of authorized certification institutions.

Authorized certification institutions issue Professional Competency Certificates to those who pass examinations. The Regulation introduces a process whereby a Europass Certificate Attachment will be issued for each certificated national competency and the Institute will upload this to the relevant database. Professional Competency Certificate holders can either download this attachment themselves, or request it from the authorized certification institution.

The Regulation also outlines provisions for the Institute to suspend or revoke powers from authorized certification institutions. Decisions on suspension or revocation of authority may either include all national competencies held by an institution, or only apply to particular national competencies.

Please see this link for full text of the Regulation (only available in Turkish).

Information first published in the MA | Gazette, a fortnightly legal update newsletter produced by Moroğlu Arseven.

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