NSQF formally called NVQF is a system for the development, classification and recognition of skills, knowledge, understanding and competencies acquired by individuals, irrespective of where and how the training or skill was acquired. The system gives a clear statement of what the learner must know or be able to do whether the learning took place in a classroom, on-the-job, or less formally.

The framework indicates the comparability of different qualifications and how one can progress from one level to another. The framework is the structure within which the National Skills Qualifications (NSQs) operate. 

The framework aims at

  1. promoting lifelong learning
  2. providing quality assurance and recognition

Promoting Life Long Learning

  • understanding occupational learning routes and qualifications and how they relate to each other.
  • providing access  to  vocational  education  and  training opportunities.
  • making progression routes easier and clearer.
  • improving career mobility.
  • increasing the scope for recognition of prior learning.

Lifelong learning is necessary  to  enhance  an  individual's employability in a rapidly changing world of work.  People should have  opportunities  for  training  to  meet  needs  arising  from technological  and  economic  development  and  changing  career paths.  National Skills Qualifications Framework can offer Nigeria an instrument for promoting the development of new qualifications, making delivery more flexible and widening the range of providers.

Providing Quality Assurance and Recognition

  • ensuring that qualifications are relevant to perceived social and economic needs.
  • ensuring that National Occupational Standards are defined by agreed learning outcomes and are applied consistently.
  • ensuring that training providers meet certain quality standards.
  • ensuring international recognition for national qualifications.

The framework is used to increase the influence of stakeholders in the  development  of  qualifications  so  that  the  system responsive  to  the  needs  of  the  labour  market.    Employers and workers' organisations have an important role to play in developing competency standards for qualifications.  Also under quality assurance, there must be:-

Validation of qualifications/standards

  • ensuring that  the  qualification  is  designed  to  meet  certain agreed criteria.
  • ensuring  that  the  standards  meet  the  specific  sector requirements


  • NSQF is to ensure the quality, status, relevance and provision availability of TVETs
  • Complexity and ambiguity of selecting a competent person by industry is reduced
  • Establish pathways and progression from informal short courses provided by various government agencies, NGOs and industry, to formal TVET programmes
  • Narrowing the gaps between what TVET graduates know and can do and the skills and knowledge that employers say they need  
  • Overcome  limited  progression  possibilities  and  demand  for TVET that far exceeds supply

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