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Professional Qualification Certificate Documents

A Professional Qualification Certificate is evidence of an individual’s competence in a given subject or skill.  This qualification is often gained by undertaking a vocational training course which relates to specific career path.  Some can be completed directly after a university degree, whereas others require some experience in the profession.  The courses are often regulated and awarded by professional bodies within the relevant industries and are a good way to ensure that everyone in a particular job meets the required minimum standard of professional expertise.

Professional qualifications differ from master’s degrees as they tend to be more vocational in nature and are tailored towards entry to a given field of that profession, or promotion within it.  A Master’s degree is largely geared towards academic study, and whilst this may prepare an individual for a particular career, it also contains general skills and knowledge related to a variety of fields of work.  Some professional qualifications overlap with academic qualifications, however.  In this sense, Master’s degrees can act as professional qualifications if they receive accreditation from the relevant organisations.  It should be checked that academic qualifications will be accepted by a professional organisation before undertaking any study. 

A professional qualification can take anything from a few weeks to several years to complete, depending on the qualification and whether it is being undertaken on a full time or part-time basis.  Some qualifications have a minimum time period as they include work experience.  The usual amount of study is around 40 hours a week for full time study.  The hours for part time study vary based on the requirements of the course. Institutions are continually making their courses more accessible by giving options in the way they are delivered and having several intakes a year.

An employer might require verification that you do indeed hold a professional qualification and may ask for a notarised original or a notarised copy of your qualification certificate.  In order to do this, you will need to present your original certificate to a Notary Public.  The Notary must determine that the certificate is genuine and will do this by contacting the issuing institution to verify the award of the qualification as well as other details such as the date of award.  This may require you to complete a consent form, which will accompany the Notary’s request for information.  The duration of this verification process will vary depending on the timescales that the awarding body work to.  Therefore, it is important to consider this and ask a Notary to complete this work as soon as you are notified that it is required.