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CSCS card - The Academically Qualified Person (AQP) card....whats your degree title?
#1
I am not sure if anyone has ever applied for one of these, but here is my tale.....

The CSCS card allows for persons to qualify for a valid card based upon academic qualification. On the CSCS card web site these qualifications are listed and include 'Archaeology'. You still have to undertake and pass the CSCS card test (in this case the Managers and Professionals (MAP) test). And then contact the CSCS card issue department. Thats when the problems start....

Firstly you have to post a copy of your degree certificate to the CSCS centre and then ring to finalise the transcation. That part is pretty straightforward and efficient, as is accessing details of your successful test result. The problem comes with how your degree certificate describes your course. If it says anything other than just 'Archaeology'....so for example 'Archaeology and Anthropology', 'Archaeology and Ancient History' or as in my case 'Landscape Archaeology and GIS'.....your application will not be approved.

All however is not lost. You are advised to send a copy of your degree certificate to another department of CITB (Construction Industry Training Board) who will make a decision on your qualification (whether it falls within the range of approved qualifications)....except their answer is to refer it to the National Construction College of CITB....who then suggest that you ring another person at CITB...who then refer you back to the team supervisor of the original CSCS card operator who told you that they were unable to approve your qualification as it says something more than just 'Archaeologist'.....at present I am sitting by the phone waiting for a return phone call from that supervisor. I am hopeful they may be able to provide an answer.....

BUT...in preparation for that phone call, and the subesquent letter of clarification I will be writing to the CITB, I wondered if people would be willing to share with me the title that appears on their qualification certificate (ie 'Archaeology and Anthropology', 'Archaeology and Ancient History' 'Classical Archaeology' etc etc), so that I can provide CITB with an inclusive list of 'Archaeology' qualification titles....many thanks

Update: Got a call back from a really helpful person who totally understood the situation and admitted that so few archaeologists have ever applied for this version of the CSCS card that the question of clarifying the precise wording of appropriate qualifications has never arisen. Someone else is going to call me back tomorrow to discuss this further. I am thinking that maybe this is something that FAME/IfA could advise CITB on....any suggestions would be gratefullly accepted.
With peace and consolation hath dismist, And calm of mind all passion spent...
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#2
There is another solution to the problem, Kevin. Don't bother with another pointless card... :face-stir: Wink
I reserve the right to change my mind. It's called learning.
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#3
Yeah, when has anyone on a construction site ever asked for evidence that you're an Academically Qualified Person?
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#4
I took the exam because it seemed to be the only way to qualify under the H&S management and professional option rather than just as a general operative. It seemed to me a way of showing that archaeology took H&S seriously. Tool: It seems to be a prerequisite that archaeologists hold a CSCS card. My previous one had expired so I needed to take a new test at my own expense. It is the same price whether you take the general operative/archaeological technician or the Management and Professional test...and the AQP card does state what your qualification is: Archaeological Surveyor, Landscape Archaeologist, Environmental Archaeologist, Osteologist etc etc
With peace and consolation hath dismist, And calm of mind all passion spent...
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#5
Kevin, it is true that it is a prerequisite to have such a card on most construction sites. So, yes, if you can get a fancy one for the same price and little hassle, that's fair enough. I can't honestly see it'll make a jot of difference to anything other than your pride though which one you have, as, from the point of view of the principle contractor they're only interested in covering their arse. Are you competent and safe to be on site? Are you competent and safe to operate any of the kit that may damage someone/something else? That's all they want to know, and sadly they palm off their legal obligation to ensure this onto one of these schemes, the efficacy of which I sometimes (sometimes??) doubt. But that's the world we operate in, joy of joys...
I reserve the right to change my mind. It's called learning.
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#6
Its not really a 'fancy' one....its a slightly different exam. It asks more questions about the hierarchy of H&S management and as a result requires a slightly wider reading of the practice and theory of the subject. You surely can't dispute that knowing more about the law and practice that governs our working life is not a good thing? And at the end of the day attaining the standard does acknowledge that archaeologists are managers and professionals and specialists and not just general operatives or technicians. Humility is good but hiding behind a bushel when we do have an opportunity to shine, undersells our profession....just my opinion of course.
With peace and consolation hath dismist, And calm of mind all passion spent...
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#7
Maybe it's just my natural cynicism after many years railing against much of the idiocy that passes for health and safety within the construction industry, in which case you may have a point Kevin. Without looking into it further though it looks on the surface to be a bit of a non-thingy. I can understand those in a managerial position having different responsibilities over and above those of the cannon-fodder, but that is covered by other cards isn't it? And also at that level you have things like the CITB SMSTS (if that still exists) which gives a much more in-depth coverage of the demands of health and safety at managerial level. If you're on site, as a sub-contractor, your responsibilities are pretty much the same whether you're a sole-operator or a grunt with a trowel. If you're a one-man (person?)-band, or a company employing other archaeologists, as long as you satisfy the principle contractors criteria it's then down to your, and your insurance company's, own policies to determine any further requirements? Ultimately these cards/schemes are about people not getting injured and killed, and not about your profession or academic qualification. Adding those on seem to me to be rather missing the point.
I reserve the right to change my mind. It's called learning.
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#8
Have never heard of anyone on a construction site use CSCS as anything other than a box-tick, unless you're in a specialist construction profession (eg electrician) when they might take some notice (you might wire their kettle wrong), otherwise all they want is the number and expiry date off the card, the guy taking the details couldn't give a monkey's whether you're the Prof who discovered King Arthur's tomb, he and his management just want you to be as quick as possible and then go away
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#9
The one thing I will say about CSCS cards and their equivalents is that they cannot do anything to assess common sense. Despite the cards and tests, inductions, toolbox talks and informal discussions, a colleague still had to turf a digger out of a 1m diameter by 2m deep pit earlier this year. I'm not sure what was more concerning; the digger's lack of common sense, or the fact that nobody else on site (supervisors included) had thought to question it.
D. Vader
Senior Consultant

Vader Maull & Palpatine
Archaeological Consultants

A tremor in the Force. The last time I felt it was in the presence of Tony Robinson.
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#10
My qualification was accepted for the AQP card and card is now in the post....
With peace and consolation hath dismist, And calm of mind all passion spent...
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