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Garage technicians learn the nuts and bolts of cyberspace


A new online Assessment System is being launched to help drive up standards of car servicing and repair by allowing NVQ and SVQ candidates to test their knowledge and diagnostic skills on the internet.

The Institute of the Motor Industry (IMI) is offering the facility on its own website. A series of tests is being made available which can be administered by any of the 200 test centres currently accredited by the IMI. The tests, which are multiple choice using randomly-generated questions, are marked as soon as they are completed and the results logged by the IMI to form part of the evidence needed for candidates to complete one of the technical NVQ/SVQ qualifications. Those able to work towards a qualification in this way will include auto electricians, body fitters, repairers and refinishers, light and heavy vehicle technicians, motorcycle technicians, vehicle valeters and vehicle inspectors, who will also be required to undertake assessment in the workplace to complete their 'portfolios'.

The IMI says that the new study methods have been developed in part to a response to the recommendation from the Office of Fair Trading last year, which stated there was a need for more training in the industry to combat poor standards in servicing and repair. It wants employers to look for the NVQ/SVQ qualification when recruiting new technicians.

Peter Creasey, the Institute’s Chief Executive said: "With the quality of vehicles at an all-time high, it is the quality of service which is under scrutiny by consumers. The Institute’s radical new approach to training will go a long way to raising skill levels and we believe it will help both trainees and employers better understand the value of qualifications."

The National Training Organisation for the Motor Industry, the Motor Industry Training Council, has welcomed the new initiative. Sheila McGregor, director of MITC, commented, "This is an innovative approach to assessment which we highly commend. It will be warmly welcomed by trainers and candidates alike and especially by employers who have been keen to see increased emphasis placed on knowledge and understanding in N/SVQs. We shall follow its take up and development with interest."

For more information, visit the IMI website at


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