Introduction (SCQF Level 7)


Flexible start date




  • Engineering


  • Online

Why take this course?

Quality systems are used in all organisations. This Unit will give you an insight into how quality is integral in meeting customer requirements for all products and services, and will allow you to distinguish between different quality approaches. You will also be provided with the opportunity to examine different quality control techniques and analyse quality costs.

The Unit has been written as an overview of quality, applied in the context of your own working environment. It is a mandatory Unit within the HNC/HND Mechanical Engineering Group Award, but can also be part of another Group Award or taken as a single HN Unit. On successful completion, you should possess the knowledge and understanding to enable you to:

  • Explain quality system elements and principles
  • Explain the operation and application of BS EN ISO 9001
  • Explain how organisations get accredited to BS EN ISO 9001 standard
  • Understand ways to get/interpret data to control a process
  • Understand the way in which SPC is used to control a process
  • Describe, interpret and evaluate quality costs

Credit points and level: 1 HN credit at SCQF level 7: (8 SCQF credit points at SCQF level 7)

What you will experience

You will be introduced to the fundamental principles of quality assurance and quality control and how these apply to BS EN ISO 9001. You will also learn how these principles are applied in practice when an organisation applies for accreditation to BS EN ISO 9001. The steps taken, timelines and how a quality system is built up will show you how an organisation creates a quality system which develops into the kind of culture that is necessary in modern industry.

Once you are familiar with the fundamentals of quality, you will learn different methods of controlling a process and how to gather information and data to help you with this. You will learn several methods of gathering data and how best to interpret that data and also how the different methods are applicable to different situations and organisations. As you progress you will be introduced to statistical process control and its uses in processes. Finally you will learn about quality costs, how to interpret and evaluate them, how to categorise them and show them in a way which is easily understood.

Outcomes 1 and 3 are assessed by a single assessment paper, based on an explanation of quality control and quality assurance principles and the application of total quality management (TQM) principles in the workplace. The assessment will be conducted under controlled, supervised conditions. Outcome 2 is assessed via a case study of a new company setting up quality systems and applying to achieve ISO 9001. Outcome 4 is also assessed via case study, and will take place under controlled, supervised conditions. Your evidence of understanding should take the form of graphs and charts, as well as a written report evaluating the cost trends shown in the graphs/charts.