FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)

  1. If I join FEN, do I have to do the qualification?  No, the programme can be used flexibly, FEN will support a member to gain a qualification, equally they will support members just wishing to complete some CPD.
  2. Why do I have to pay for 2 years membership initially? This was the only way that we could ensure flexibility for our members to commence our programmes at a time that suited them.
  3. How can I show that I have attended a session or watched a session on catch-up? On completion of an evaluation following attendance at a webinar or watching on catch-up, you will receive a certification of attendance.
  4. Do I have to use FEN’s e-portfolio?  No, but the unit/qualifications have to be presented to the Internal Quality Assurance Board electronically for them to be accredited.
  5. Will I still need to complete my degree if I gain the AFEN qualification? Both universities and awarding bodies use the CQFW (Credit and Qualifications Framework for Wales) and Quality Assurance Agency for Higher Education (QAA) crediting system. So, attaining 120 credits at level 6 indicates the same degree of difficulty and number of study hours as what would be attained in the university’s final year of an honour’s degree programme. You will notice in job descriptions it often stipulates degree or equivalent – this is that equivalent. This can be clearly seen in the fan diagram found in the CQFW learner Guide[1].
  6. Isn’t a Diploma lower than a degree?  No, with the CQFW and other awarding bodies, a diploma denotes the size of the qualification rather than the level of difficulty, so the diploma identifies that 37 credits or more has been achieved.
  7. Is the cost of the qualification included in membership?  No, there is an additional cost for accrediting a unit or a qualification. This is calculated from a set cost per credit – currently £3.20/credit plus an administration free. The good news is that this cost does not have to be paid until the unit is submitted for accreditation. You will, however, have to register intent to complete the unit or qualification as soon as you decide to do it.
  8. The programme I want has already started, when are the dates for the next one?  the programmes are designed flexibly so you can start the programme at any time. The live sessions that you have missed, have been recorded, and are available on catch up. You could join the live sessions whilst you watch those missed on catch-up at your convenience. The programmes are themed, so we would recommend that you start with the first session for that particular section and watch sequentially.
  9. If I want to complete the qualification, is it advisable to do one unit at a time? Although you can do this should you wish, doing it this way is not an effective or efficient way to complete a qualification, as effective planning at an early stage will enable a piece of evidence to be developed that can meet multiple assessment criteria of all the required units for the qualification.
  10. What about a programme for Fellow level? We are looking to develop this and envisage that it will be run as a programme of masterclasses which matches the competencies.
  11. If I start work on a unit or qualification, will I need to give it up if I want to move to another emergency care setting? No, as long as the new emergency care unit is able to offer you an assessor to assess your work then the unit/qualification can be signed off anywhere in Ireland or the UK – or potentially other countries (you would need to contact us to discuss the feasibility of assessment outside the UK and Ireland).
  12. Are the FEN qualifications transferrable between departments and countries in Ireland and the UK? Yes, they should be as they have equivalence to the European Qualifications Framework (EQF) in the same way as university qualifications are recognised. They could also be recognised further afield as other countries outside of Europe have mapped their qualifications to the EQF e.g. UAE[2], Australia[3], New Zealand[4] and Hong Kong[5]
  13. If I start a unit/qualification, what are the submission dates for accreditation? There are no established deadlines for when completed units/qualifications have to be submitted, but we would expect that a qualification is completed within around 2 years and up to a maximum of 3 years. 
  14. Can you explain accreditation to me? When your assessor has signed off a unit as being complete, then they submit the unit to the Internal Quality Assurance Board (IQAB). The IQAB meet three times a year: January, May and September to accredit units/qualifications. The units/qualifications will need to be submitted to IQAB at a minimum of ten weeks before the board sit. The role of the IQAB is to scrutinise the submitted units and ensure that the required standards have been met by the assessor. Once the submitted work has been approved by IQAB as meeting the standard required, then FEN will request award of credit for the learner. Following this, an external examiner for Agored Cymru may wish to inspect the unit/qualification as part of the quality assurance process. On successful completion of this process, the learner will be awarded the credit for the unit.
  15. What happens if I fail a unit/qualification? In this type of qualification there is no failure. The assessor will continue to assess your work until you have sufficient evidence to successfully complete the unit.
  16. What is the pass mark? In this type of education there is no pass mark, instead each of the Assessment Criteria within each unit has to be completed to the required standard.
  17. If my assessor has submitted my unit for accreditation, will it automatically result in it being accredited? No, the purpose of the Internal Quality Assurance Board (IQAB) is to review the work of the assessor and to ensure consistency between assessors and that they are meeting the set standard. On occasion, it has been found that an assessor has not assessed your work to the level expected and so the work is returned with guidance notes for assessor on what needs to be developed further for successful completion. This may mean that your assessor is required to undertake further assessment of your work or practice.
  18.  I note that I have to complete case reviews, are these marked as pass or fail? No, these are reviewed, strengths and weaknesses are noted and the assessor may ask for sections of the case review to be further developed or an addendum added to the end of the case review to address any weaknesses.
  19. Does my evidence have to be referenced? Yes, in short it does, any work that is submitted must be referenced to the source from which you obtained the evidence, or it must be completely original. In our assessment, each sentence is reviewed for originality and appropriate referencing. Plagiarism is not acceptable within the units or qualifications.
  20. Does my evidence have to be up to date? Yes, it is an expectation of a registrant nurse that their work is evidence based and this is something that your assessor will be considering when reviewing your evidence.
  21. Do I have to have a different piece of evidence for each learning outcome? No, one piece of evidence can be used against multiple learning outcomes and either completely or partially satisfy that learning outcome. If completely satisfied, that learning outcome can be signed off by the assessor as complete and at the necessary level.
  22. Do I have to produce a reference list? Yes, however using apps such as Cite this for me[6] is acceptable.
  23. Do I have to use a certain style of referencing? We would recommend using Harvard Style for most of the evidence, however using a number reference style or using a Footnote/Endnote would be acceptable for evidence such as annotated notes or spider diagrams.
  24. How much evidence do I need to supply? It is the quality rather than quantity that is important. With careful planning then case reviews, annotated notes and case-based discussions can capture evidence against multiple Assessment Criteria thus reducing amount of evidence you will need. 
  25. Will my assessor be given any support by FEN? Yes, we provide monthly webinars for assessors, which also facilitates networking. We allocate the assessor an assessor pod which is headed by an experienced Internal Quality Assurer who can provide support and direction as required. Assessors are invited to be a part of the internal quality assurance process for accrediting units/qualifications.
  26. Can I complete the units if I don’t have an assessor? No, you will need an assessor from your workplace to undertake the practical assessment, to assess your evidence and submit the unit when fully completed for it to be accredited.
  27. Can I have more than one assessor? Yes, it is an advantage to have more than one, as long as they can work together. You will need to have an identified assessor who undertakes the final sign off for your unit and is prepared to submit it for accreditation.
  28. How much does the qualification cost? The current costs are £3.20 per credit plus £29 administration fee. This is paid on submission of the completed unit. Our AFEN units are either a 60-credit unit (total cost £221) or a 20 credit unit (total cost £93); thus making the full AFEN qualification £500 for the 120 credits at Level 6 (equivalent level 7/8 in Ireland and level 9/10 in Scotland).
  29. Do I have to wait until the full programme of study had completed before I submit a unit for accreditation? No, you can submit a unit at any time. It is the outcome that is important i.e. that you have successfully completed allthe assessment criteria for the unit rather than the time the journey has taken.
  30. Can I complete or stop at one unit or do I have to complete the full qualification? As you are awarded with credit per unit completed, you can stop after submitting the units you desire.
  31. Do I have to complete AFEN level before I can proceed to MFEN? No, if you are already an experienced emergency nurse who feels that they already have the knowledge, skills and capabilities required in AFEN then it would be appropriate to go straight to MFEN. As the quality of the AFEN lectures are set high, then we would recommend that you watch the webinars to ensure that your clinical knowledge is up to date and evidence based.
  32. Why does the MFEN programme have very few clinical webinars? It is anticipated that those wishing to complete MFEN will use the AFEN programme to develop up to date clinical knowledge as the AFEN programme has proved to deliver the right level of clinical detail for MFEN too. When developing the MFEN programme, we were mindful that it was the development of self and others and assessor capability that the MFEN emergency nurse would need, so we designed the programme to include a mixture of dedicated MFEN sessions around development of self and others, the assessors programme. We will be holding clinical and other sessions on our monthly webinars to augment MFEN development. 

[1] CQFW Learners Guide: 35182 CQFW Learner Guide (gov.wales)

[2] Globalization of EQF .pdf

[3] EQF and AQF Recognition – MacArthur Institute

[4] European Union » NZQA

[5] Leaflet.pdf (hkqf.gov.hk)

[6] Cite This For Me: Harvard, APA, MLA Reference Generator