Where have all the CS units gone?

You may have heard that there have been changes to training and qualifications within our industry.


Why has this happened?

The National Occupational Standards (NOS) for Trees and Timber were revised and re-written by a team of industry consultants for LANTRA Sector Skills Council (SSC) during 2011.

The Trees and Timber Industry Group were advised by industry that the 2009 NOS were not fit for purpose. Therefore the NOS were re-written to ensure it had full industry commitment before it was signed off in December 2011.

As a result of changes to the NOS, LANTRA SSC required the production of a new suite of Framework (QCF) compliant units. These units consist of generic outcomes and assessment criteria. They have been collaboratively developed by teams of industry specialists under the direction and close supervision of LANTRA SSC.

The new QCF units are now known by their unit/qualification title and not prefixed by “CS “as previously named.


What is the Qualifications & Credit Framework?

OFQUAL have introduced the Qualifications & Credit Framework (QCF) to increase flexibility for learners and employers. Qualifications may be built up from individual units according to rules of combination. The units are derived from the National Occupational Standards, which are compiled by Lantra SSC, the Sector Skills Council for the Land-based industries.


What does this mean for you?

The CS units from City & Guilds NPTC have now been replaced by QCF (Qualification & Credit Framework) so that they meet the recently revised NOS (National Occupational Standards).

Both  Lantra Awards and City and Guilds NPTC now offer exactly the same QCF qualification.

For example –

QCF Level 2 Award in Chainsaw Maintenance and Crosscutting.

QCF Level 2 Award in Felling and Processing Trees up to 380mm etc.

Most of the qualifications remain similar to the old CS units with some slight changes in line with current best practice. There are also some additional new QCF qualifications available.


The choice is yours regarding how you achieve these qualifications.  Both Lantra Awards and City and Guilds NPTC offer training courses in order to prepare you for the usual Independent assessment. These QCF assessments can be booked via a Lantra Awards Centre or an City & Guilds NPTC Assessment Centre, both of whom have a list of accredited QCF assessors.


Land Skills Training & Assessments Ltd are both a Lantra Awards Centre and a City & Guilds Assessment Centre.


In summary Lantra Awards and City and Guilds NPTC are both offering training and assessment in the same new QCF qualifications. Both organisations say this should make it a more streamlined process and give you better value for money.


Click for a list showing the old CS units and new QCF units