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Wales Essential Skills updates

October 2021

Essential Skills Wales qualifications have existed in their current form since 2016. In recent months, the four Awarding Bodies have been working with Qualifications Wales to review the Design Principles with a view to:

  • improve manageability of the controlled tasks for candidates
  • further improve the clarity of expectations for each subject at each level, and
  • increase the available options for questions in the confirmatory tests

The review has taken into consideration feedback from all stakeholders including our centres, question writers, external quality assurance personnel and cross awarding body standardisation events.

A document providing a summary of the changes, for EAoNS, ECommS and EES, which are due to be implemented from September 2022 is available from the 3868 Qualification Page under Additional Documents.

In addition, we have added a "Confirmatory Test Pass Rates v1.0" guide to the Additional Documents folder. This describes how the Confirmatory Tests for EAoNS and ECommS are designed and awarded together with an indication of the pass rates for the period October 2019 and March 2020.

We hope you find these documents useful, if you should have any questions, please contact: pre-employment@cityandguilds.com.

November 2020

To support centres with the remote delivery and assessment of the two Digital Literacy controlled tasks to be used during this period of Covid-19 adaptions, we have made word versions of the assessors' packs available from the qualification page. They can be found on the Documents tab under the EDLS Assessment Materials folder at each Level.

Please find a link to the recording of the recent webinar about the adaptations for Essential Skills qualifications in Wales together with the slide deck.

These documents are password protected, passwords are available from the 3868-03 Walled Garden catalogue page.

Watch the ESW Adaptations Webinar recording

Download the ESW Adaptations Webinar slides

January 2020

Feedback from centres suggests that they would find it useful to be able to design Controlled Tasks for their learners that reflect their chosen vocational area or interests. Qualification Wales has created some guidance to support centres to pursue this and more information can be found here.

If you are interested in creating your own version of a Controlled Task please download the presentation below which sets out the process for centres to follow.

Download the presentation

Any questions regarding designing your own controlled tasks or the process should be directed to ESW-CDT@cityandguilds.com

September 2018

Following Qualification Wales’ review of the implementation of Essential Skills Wales Qualifications it has been agreed that it will be possible for learners to take a partial re-sit of the Essential Skills Communications controlled task where they have been unsuccessful with one or two parts of their controlled task. The Asset Management Group have issued guidance for centres in managing this process which is available here.

15 March 2018

A number of older controlled tasks have been removed from the qualifications page and are no longer available for use after 31 March 2018.

Any stocks of these tasks held by centres must be destroyed.

The table below lists the assessments which have been withdrawn:

Set 1

Set 2

ECommS Level 1

Community & Politics - Voting

Sport & Leisure – Exercising Outdoors

ECommS Level 2

Business – Starting a Business

Employment – Job Interviews

ECommS Level 3

Employment - Space Exploration

Sport & Leisure – Sports Drinks and Diodydd Chwaraeon

EAoNs Level 1


Sport & Leisure

EAoNs Level 2

Finance – Paying for a Holiday

Sport & Leisure – Designing a fitness programme and Diodydd Chwaraeon

EAoNs Level 3



EDLS Entry Level 1

Set 1 – Health & Fitness

EDLS Entry Level 2

Set 1 – Sport & Leisure

EDLS Entry Level 3

Set 1 - Health & Wellbeing

EDLS Level 1

Set 1 – Employment – Recruitment day

EDLS Level 2

Set 1 - Travel & Tourism - Staycation

EDLS Level 3

Set 1 – Travel & Tourism - Staycation

Some new controlled tasks have been added to the bank available from the City & Guilds’ website.

Find a table listing all the current active assessments >