Maladministration and Malpractice Policy and Procedure

HSQE Training will seek to promote the Conservation and Sustainable use of natural resources and to eliminate Environmental Pollution in all its activities and, where possible, by its influence over others.

The Company’s overall mission is to carry out our undertakings to a high quality and provide our clients with superior service. Underpinning this philosophy is the firm belief that the delivery of a qualitative service requires active consideration of the environment and social impacts associated with our work. Higher Standards of Practice in these areas can also benefit the environment, society, and the economy.

1. Summary statement

1.1          HSQE Training is committed to protecting the interests of its Learners and ensuring the prescribed standards are applied consistently and fairly to all courses registered with HSQE Training.  Trainer/Assessors MUST ensure that internal administration, course delivery and assessments are conducted in line with the business’s policies, protocols and procedures. HSQE Training is committed to preventing maladministration or malpractice from occurring. It will take all reasonable steps to achieve through the implementation of rigorous policies and procedures to cover course & Learner registration, the delivery and assessment of qualifications and quality assurance.

1.2          HSQE Training takes very seriously actions by Trainers/Assessors who fail to meet the required standards. If HSQE Training is required to take disciplinary action, it will be dealt with in accordance with the sanctions outlined in the HSQE Training Internal Quality Assurance Policy.

2. Introduction

2.1          This policy is aimed primarily, but not exclusively, at HSQE Training registered Trainer/Assessors delivering regulated qualifications or units and Learners working towards these. It sets out the steps Trainers/Assessors and Learners should follow when reporting alleged maladministration or malpractice and HSQE Training responsibilities and processes in dealing with such cases.

3. Trainer/Assessor responsibility

3.1 Trainers/Assessors involved in the delivery, assessment and quality assurance of regulated qualifications and their Learners must be aware of this policy – mainly if a potential complaint arises.

3.2 During monitoring visits, the person conducting the visit may check that colleagues and Learners are aware of the policies’ contents and purpose.

4. Definition of maladministration

4.1          Maladministration is a non-deliberate activity or practice indicating a lack of care, judgement, non-compliance, or error in managing or administering activities relating to HSQE Training registered courses.

4.2          We will investigate all cases of maladministration in liaison with the parties concerned. If an investigation confirms maladministration, we will impose an appropriate sanction and take the necessary steps to ensure that Learners’ interests are protected as far as possible. This may include planning for re-assessment or certification, as appropriate.

4.3          The items listed below are examples of Trainer/Assessor maladministration. Please note that these examples are not exhaustive and are guidance on our definition of maladministration:

  • Non-compliance with HSQE Training policies and procedures.
  • Failure to adhere to HSQE Training course registration and certification process.
  • Failure to meet HSQE Training credit control policy, such as late invoice payment.
  • Inaccurate claims for certification.
  • Unreasonable delays in responding to quality assurance requests or any other reasonable request.

5. Definition of malpractice

5.1          Malpractice is any deliberate activity or practice that contravenes required standards or regulations and ultimately compromises the integrity of the assessment process and/or the validity of qualifications.

5.2          The items listed below are examples of Trainer/Assessor and Learner malpractice.  Please note that these examples are not exhaustive and are guidance on our definition of malpractice:

  • Contravention of HSQE Training Trainer/Assessor and qualification approval conditions.
  • Access to resources (premises, records, information, Learners, and staff) is denied to any authorised HSQE Training representative and/or the regulatory authorities.
  • Failure to carry out the delivery, assessment, and quality assurance of qualifications in accordance with HSQE Training requirements.
  • Failure to maintain auditable records, e.g. certification claims.
  • Fraudulent claim for certificates.
  • Intentional withholding of information from us is critical to maintaining the rigour of quality assurance.
  • Deliberate misuse of the HSQE Training brand, including logo, trademarks, and copyrighted materials.
  • Forgery of evidence.
  • Contravention of the assessment arrangements for each qualification.
  • Insecure storage of assessment materials and exam papers.
  • Unauthorised amendment, copying or distribution of assessment materials.
  • Failure to adhere to the Reasonable Adjustments and Special Considerations Policies requirements.

5.3          Examples of Learner malpractice can include:

  • Cheating or plagiarism of any nature.
  • Forgery of evidence.
  • Collusion.
  • Impersonation of another Learner.

6. Process for making an allegation of malpractice or maladministration

6.1          Anybody who identifies or is made aware of suspected or actual malpractice or maladministration at any time MUST immediately report their findings to HSQE Consultancy. In doing so, they should put the claim in writing – email and enclose supporting evidence.

6.2          All allegations should include (where possible and relevant):

  • Trainer/Assessor’s name, business name and contact details.
  • Learner’s name.
  • Title and number of the HSQE Training course/qualification affected or nature of the service concerned.
  • Date(s) of the alleged maladministration or malpractice.
  • Full nature of the suspected or actual maladministration or malpractice.
  • Contents and outcome of any investigation carried out by the Trainer/Assessor or anybody else involved in the case, including any mitigating circumstances.
  • Written statements from those involved in the case, e.g. witness statements.
  • Date of the report and the informant’s name, position and signature.

7. HSQE Consultancy action on receipt of an allegation

7.1          Upon receiving an allegation, it will be passed to the Centre Manager, and HSQE Training will acknowledge receipt within five working days.  In all cases, HSQE Training will endeavour to protect the informant’s identity, but depending on the nature of the claim, this may not always be possible.  Informants MUST be aware that they may be identifiable due to the circumstances of the disclosure.

7.2          In all cases where HSQE Training suspect maladministration or malpractice, the appropriate Awarding Organisation will be immediately informed.

7.3          Upon receipt of an allegation, the Awarding Organisation will risk assessing the claim and may lead the investigation itself or may require HSQE Training to lead the investigation.

8. The Awarding Organisation leading the investigation

8.1          Should the Awarding Organisation decide to lead the investigation, HSQE Training will cooperate fully and provide the Awarding Organisation with all facts of the situation and any reasonable additional information that may be requested during the investigation.

8.2          HSQE Training will require all Trainer/Assessors to also co-operate with all aspects of an investigation and provide any requested information or evidence in a reasonable time frame.

8.3          The Awarding Organisation will have a regulatory responsibility to qualification Regulators, such as Ofqual, SQA Accreditation, Qualifications Wales, and CCEA, CITB and both HSQE Training and approved Trainers/Assessors will be required to cooperate with qualification Regulators as required.

9. HSQE Consultancy leading the investigation

9.1          Should the Awarding Organisation require HSQE Training to conduct the investigation, HSQE Training will keep the Awarding Organisation informed on the status of the investigation at all times and will produce a detailed report for the Awarding Organisation with the findings of the investigation and proposed action plan and proposed sanctions. The Awarding Organisation will then review the report, proposed action plan and sanctions to determine their suitability.

9.2          HSQE Training will make preliminary checks to determine whether the claim is vexatious or frivolous. The Centre Manager may appoint a suitably competent person/s to lead the investigation, including HSQE Training personnel and, where appropriate, external appropriately qualified personnel to examine the report and supporting evidence. All persons will be independent, i.e., they will have no direct involvement in the alleged issues and will be free of any conflict of interest.

9.3          HSQE Training aims to complete any investigation within 30 working days of the Awarding Organisation’s instruction to investigate. Please note that in some cases, the investigation may take longer, for example, if a visit is required. In such instances, we will advise all parties concerned of the likely revised timescale.

9.4          The investigator/s review may involve:

  • A request for further information from the Trainer/Assessor, Learner or HSQE Training personnel.
  • Interviews (face to face or by telephone) with personnel involved in the investigation.
  • HSQE Training authorised personnel to conduct a local visit. In this case, a fee may be charged for the visit.

9.5          HSQE Training expect all parties involved in the investigation to co-operate fully. Failure to cooperate may lead to a decision based on the evidence available. At any stage in this process, HSQE Training reserves the right to suspend Trainer/Assessor status and any claims for Learner certification submitted by the Trainer/Assessor. HSQE Training may also reserve the right to withhold a Learner’s results and/or certificate for all the HSQE Training courses/qualifications they are studying if the case is deemed to be severe.

9.6          If the investigation confirms that there has been maladministration or malpractice, HSQE Training may have no alternative but to propose to the Awarding Organisation one or more of the following sanctions (note this list is not exhaustive). In determining the sanction, HSQE Training will consider all factors put forward by all parties:

  • A Suspension of the Trainer/Assessor status for all HSQE Training programmes.
  • Termination of the Trainer/Assessor approved status with HSQE Training.
  • Suspension of the Trainer/Assessor status to run a specific HSQE Training course/qualification.
  • Suspension of the Learner’s registration and/or certification for one or more courses/qualifications.
  • Increased level of quality assurance.
  • Specify any additional training/mentoring that may be required.
  • Disallowing all or part of the Learner’s assessment evidence.
  • Not issuing the Learner’s certificate(s).
  • Not accepting any further registrations for the Learner.
  • Disqualification of the Learner from the course/qualification.

9.7          Upon completion of the investigation HSQE Training will create a detailed report covering all aspects of the allegation/s and the investigation along with a proposed action plan and proposed sanctions. This report will be sent to the Awarding Organisation for approval.

9.8          Upon receipt of the decision from the Awarding Organisation, HSQE Training will implement its proposed action plan and sanctions or any revised action plan and sanctions as required. HSQE Training will inform all relevant parties within five working days of making the decision.

10. Appeals

10.1        If a Trainer/Assessor or Learner wishes to appeal against any decision to impose sanctions, please refer to the HSQE Training Enquiries, Complaints and Appeals Policy.

11. Review Arrangements

11.1        We will review the policy periodically and revise it as and when necessary in response to customer and learner feedback, changes in our practices, actions from the regulatory authorities or external agencies, or changes in legislation. If you would like to feedback on any views, please get in touch with us via the details provided at the end of this policy.

12. Contact Us

Post: HSQE Consultancy Limited, Suite V2 Ferneberga House, Alexandra Road, Farnborough, Hampshire GU14 6DQ

e-mail:  [email protected]

Telephone: 01252 214075