Answers to your questions on the application process, how to certify your courses, fees and much more.


How do I apply to become an Approved Training Partner (ATP)?

Firstly we need you to submit an application form. Following this we’ll conduct a desktop review and an on-site visit. At each stage, we may ask you for extra information, or recommend things that you need to do before we can offer you approved training partner status. Download our application guidance brochure (below) for more information.

Delivering Certified courses

How do I deliver a certified course?

You must apply for course certification within six months of receiving Approved Training Partner status (further applications for more courses can then be submitted at any time). To apply for course certification, Approved Training Partners should submit required materials, which we will review. Please contact us for the course certification criteria. We may additionally carry out an on-site observation of the course.

How long are the CQI and IRCA Certified courses?

Foundation courses are 8–16 hours in duration. Practitioner courses are 16–24 hours, and Professional courses are 24–40 hours. Please note that this is an indication of duration and actual lengths may depend on the method of delivery.

How much do the new CQI and IRCA Certified Courses cost to deliver?

There is a one-off application fee of £1,000 to become an Approved Training Partner. There is no cost for having a course certified. Once you have started delivering the course, there is a small levy fee per delegate and an annual fee per course, which will vary depending on the course level. There’s more information about this in our application guidance brochure, below.

What types of courses and topics can I offer?

CQI and IRCA Certified courses are offered on three different levels: Foundation; Practitioner and Professional. These three levels are designed to cater for all roles within organisations, including those for whom quality or auditing is not their main function. There are a wide range of topics covered in these courses that relate to all aspects of the quality and auditing professions.

When can I start to deliver the new CQI and IRCA Certified Courses?

You can start to deliver any available CQI and IRCA Certified course(s) as soon as you have received Approved Training Partner status and have received course certification. Please contact us for the course certification criteria and specifications.

Delegate data

Why does the CQI request delegate data?

Under the partnership agreement, the CQI requests delegate data for assurance, administration, to support the levy process and for marketing purposes.

Assurance: To support the ongoing assurance of course certification, the CQI will collect delegate feedback directly from individuals who have completed a certified course.

Levy process: The CQI will invoice an ATP monthly for levy fees based on the delegate data reports.

Administration: To provide each delegate with a unique ID number and this will appear on any certificate associated with a CQI and IRCA Certified course run by an ATP.

Marketing: The only instance where the CQI will use delegate data for marketing purposes is when the CQI has obtained their consent to do so via the opt-in selection on the delegate feedback form.

What delegate data does the CQI request?

The CQI requests a number of details regarding each delegate. For the full list of data requirements, please contact us.

When do I send the delegate data?

You will be required to meet certain deadlines, depending on the delivery method of the certified course:

Classroom based courses – submission of the required delegates’ data within five days of the final date of the course

Distance learning – submission of the required delegates’ data within five working days of the delegates starting the distance learning course

How do I send delegate data?

You will be required to upload delegate data via the ATP portal in accordance with the agreed deadlines. This data should be uploaded to the ATP portal as an Excel CSV file.

How is the delegate data stored?

Delegate data is submitted electronically by the approved company administrator selected by the ATP via the ATP portal and stored against the ATPs record in the CQI’s database. This data can only be accessed by approved company administrators and approved CQI personnel.

How do delegates give their permission to share their data with the CQI?

It is the responsibility of the ATP to ensure that their terms and conditions for delegates undertaking a CQI and IRCA certified course include notification that their details will be shared with the CQI for assurance purposes.  If you would like more information on this, please contact us.

Do delegates have the option to opt-in or opt-out of communications other than mandatory course feedback?

Yes, delegates will be given the opportunity to opt-in to communications from the CQI via the delegate feedback form. If delegates choose to opt-in, they are thereby giving their permission for the CQI to contact them in relation to CQI products and services.

ATP Portal

What is the ATP portal?

The ATP portal is a system that was designed solely for the use of Approved Training Partners, that is easy to navigate and user friendly. It will enable ATPs to access files, download documents and upload information onto the CQI’s database. The portal is accessible through login details that the CQI will supply when an ATP receives Approved Training Partner status. Download the ATP portal fact sheet (below) for more information on the ATP portal.

What do I use the ATP portal for?

There are a number of features on the ATP portal. Primarily it is designed as a solution to enable communication and information to flow between an ATP and the CQI. The portal can be used to:

  • Communicate information about your organisation:
    • As an ATP you can add a bio about your organisation and insert URL’s to your course website pages. This information will then be linked to the CQI’s course directory, enabling individuals to find your courses more efficiently.
  • Download documents:
    • The portal provides you with the opportunity to access resources for the certified course(s) being delivered. These resources include course certificates, marketing collateral and course statistics.
  • Upload information:
    • The portal enables you to upload information such as delegate data onto the database. The database securely stores all information uploaded.


What is the CQI’s assurance policy?

The CQI’s policy has a risk-based, outcome-focused assurance policy. The focus is on inputs such as course design and tutor competence and outputs, including the effectiveness of course delivery and delegate satisfaction.

What does the CQI’s assurance policy mean for ATPs?

For ATPs the CQI’s assurance policy means their courses will be subject to a desktop review carried out by experienced assessors, with an on-site observation required only if it is felt the level of risk requires it. For example, if it is the first course that a new training partner has submitted for certification.

In order to maintain approval, ATPs will be required to submit an annual self-assessment focusing on their management system. This will then be reviewed by assessors, where any areas of concern will be highlighted to the ATP. If this does occur an ATP will be requested to submit further information or take corrective action.

What does the CQI’s assurance policy mean for course delegates?

For course delegates the assurance policy means the CQI will contact those individuals who have completed a certified course directly and collect their feedback. This feedback will be reviewed in conjunction with exam pass marks for the Practitioner and Professional level courses.


How do I calculate the payments with the fee structure?

The fee structure stipulates that as an ATP, you will pay an annual fee per course delivered. This is a single fee regardless of how many versions of a course you present and this is calculated depending on the level of the course you have chosen to run. ATPs are also required to pay is a levy fee per delegate on a monthly basis.


An ATP is approved to deliver the following courses:

  • Foundation level: Introduction to problem solving
  • Practitioner level: Managing problem solving
  • Practitioner level: Managing quality planning

If they deliver each course three times, with 10 delegates per course they will pay the following fees: