Agreed Code of Practice: Awarding Body/Publisher Relationships

Click here to download this article in PDF format. You can also use the link on the right under the picture to download this article and the latest version of Acrobat Reader.

This notice is produced on behalf of: AQA, CCEA, City & Guilds, Edexcel, OCR and WJEC.


Agreed Code of Practice: Awarding Body/Publisher relationships

1. Preamble
1.1 This Code is designed to ensure that awarding bodies are able to support the development of material in a professional way by working with publishers to develop material that meets the needs of the awarding bodies’ qualifications, and so contributes to the raising of standards. The Code recognises that awarding bodies have responsibilities in endorsing materials and in ensuring public confidence in the system.

1.2  As an aid to publishers, awarding bodies and the public in general, this Agreed Code of Practice has been prepared to clarify the circumstances under which such endorsements will operate.
1.3 The endorsement of a publication implies a level of responsibility for the contents of that publication. Although the final responsibility for the text would rest with the publisher, awarding bodies providing endorsement must have a process to ensure that the publication meets the awarding body’s quality assurance standards. 

2. The media to which the Code applies
2.1 The Code shall apply to all appropriate media, e.g. print and electronic media. In this document such media will be subsumed in the term ‘publication’.

3. Endorsement
3.1 Endorsement shall cover the use of either or both of the following, where the relevant awarding body has given its agreement: 

  • Its logo and / or 
  • Any text which endorses the publication. 

3.2 Even where there is an endorsed publication, neither the awarding body nor the publisher shall claim or imply that:

  • It is essential to use that publication in order to achieve the qualification; 
  • Any part of the contents of the publication will be used verbatim when setting any examination.  

Reading lists produced by an awarding body for the guidance of its centres or candidates shall include appropriate publications other than those endorsed by the awarding body or written by the examiner(s). The structure or nature of the list should not imply an order of suitability.

4. Authorship
4.1  Awarding bodies acknowledge the right of examiners to engage in appropriate professional activities but would wish to discourage inappropriate use of any relationship an examiner has with a named awarding body in connection with that activity. Any restrictions on such activities by examiners will be given in their contracts with the awarding bodies, as far as current legislation allows. Activities deemed inappropriate include those which raise questions
about the probity of the assessment process. 
4.2 Awarding bodies will not give permission to publishers to state the position of an author in relation to an awarding body or a particular syllabus/specification, other than by reference to their generic role (for example ‘a Senior Examiner’ or ‘a Principal Moderator’) or their experience.