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Uncontracted Braille Competency Course Concession 2022-23

Scottish Sensory Centre



SSC Braille Competency Course 2022-23: Uncontracted (Concession)

Scottish Sensory Centre, Moray House School of Education, The University of Edinburgh: Course Tutor: Diane McLellan

This course has been validated by the Scottish Qualifications Authority (SQA) and on satisfactory completion of the Final Assessment exam an SQA Certificate will be awarded. This is a distance learning course designed for sighted people who are working with children and young people who use uncontracted Braille, ie, teachers, learning support assistants, parents, etc. Course members will have up to 3 months, from receipt of the course materials, to complete the course, including the Final Assessment exam. The course runs continuously for this period - holidays are not factored into the timetable.

The SSC’s Braille course is based on the centre’s belief that all learners of Braille should do so by using a Perkins Braille Writer (or other paper carrying machine) and paper. Offering a Braille course that can be accessed via an electronic device may mislead a new and/or inexperienced practitioner into believing that this is also the best way to teach young children. Effective and efficient use of two hands is essential for reading and interpreting tactile diagrams; this technique can only be developed by reading a hard Braille copy, never by using a Braille display that shows only a single line at a time. For young children learning Braille the importance of developing a good, two-handed reading technique can never be over emphasised.


Detailed Description

This course offers the opportunity to acquire expertise in reading and writing uncontracted Braille. The course is presented in one stage and contains writing exercises along with flat and raised braille reading material. Course members must have access to a standard Perkins Brailler (or other paper carrying machine) and supply their own braille paper. Practising daily for 45 minutes to 1 hour is recommended rather than occasional blocks of time.

At the end of two months an assessment comprising of a comprehension and a writing exercise is completed and submitted to the Course Tutor for marking. Then the Final Assessment is undertaken under formal examination conditions without the use of reference materials and must be invigilated by a person in authority, eg, Line Manager - please contact the SSC if this is not possible.

Uncontracted Braille Course Fees for 2022-23 (April-January):

£325 Standard fee

£225 Concession for parents/unwaged

£375 (outside UK)

Please note that the course fee is not refundable after the first fortnight and substituting candidates is not permitted.

This course can be joined at the start of a month, from April to the following January (an application for January must be received in early December). Course members will have up to 3 months, from receipt of the course materials, to complete the course, including the Final Assessment. The course fee covers:

  • payment to the SQA for registration and certification;
  • complete course materials;
  • tutor time (correction, feedback on assessments and support by letter/email/telephone), and
  • final assessment exam materials, marking and feedback.

SQA Registration for certification purposes: requires full name, date of birth and home address so that when course members are registered for this award, the SQA can either match up details or create a new record; home address is where the SQA will send the award certificate. Attendance and taking exams at a Scottish school/college should mean an SQA Candidate Number already exists (please remember to provide name and address applicable at that time). If no record exists, one will be created.

If you would like to check on how the SQA may use your information please use the following link: 


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