I fear that Astragal's melancholia is hampering his/her usual incisiveness (aj 12.11.98). With respect to National and Scottish Vocational Qualifications, I feel that it would be helpful to point out that:
n/svqs are now an established part of the uk qualifications system
the level 5 n/svq under development is being guided by the Construction Industry Standing Conference, the lead body for standards in the construction industry level 5 qualifications are professional awards and are generally held to be equivalent to honours degrees at least the University of Central England has, with cisc, been actively mapping built-environment higher-education qualifications on to higher level n/svqs, with considerable success, and
The Architects Registration Board (arb) is interested in any higher- education developments in architecture, and their relationship to the existing registration requirements.
I hope that this reply goes some way to dispelling the gloom of your gossip columnist.
DR SIMON GALLACHER