BCS PRACTITIONER CERTIFICATE IN FREEDOM OF INFORMATION
The BCS Certificate in Freedom of Information provides a qualification that demonstrates a level of application and knowledge obtained by those responsible for dealing with freedom of information within an organisation. The BCS Certificate in Freedom of Information is aligned to SFIA plus as its framework.
Those experienced in freedom of information issues, as well as those new to the subject, require adequate training in order that their organisations are confident legal compliance is continually addressed.
It is necessary to identify issues requiring expert freedom of information advice in good time in order that organisational reputation and credibility is enhanced through relevant information management policies and procedures.
Useful Course Information
Please note that due to the COVID-19 Pandemic all our courses will now be held virtually (or otherwise agreed). All of our courses are tutor-led by experienced data protection professionals.
You will need access to Microsoft Teams (MS Teams) and OneDrive throughout the course. All courses will commence at 9 am and will finish at 4.30 pm. Breaks will be scheduled throughout the day. If you need to attend a meeting during the day, please discuss this with the trainer so they can tie this into allocated breaks.
You will be sent (via email) a link to the Microsoft Team 2 – 3 weeks prior to the course. Please ensure that you are able to access this before the course commences.
All of our courses have a maximum of 12 delegates.
All BCS Courses Include:
- Paperback BCS Data Protection and Compliance book released in November 2021 (sent to your home address prior to the course).
- 12-month BCS Associate membership.
- Printed course materials including sample papers.
- BCS exam (to be taken when convenient to you).
- Support for 1-month post-course on data protection related matters.
- Over 40 useful tools, templates, audits, policies and more for you to use within your organisation.
- Sample papers to help you revise.
- An innovative risk model designed for you to assess data protection risks in your organisation.
- Opportunity to network with other data protection professionals.
BCS Exam Information
The DPAS Training Manager will set you up on the dedicated BCS portal which is where you will book your exam. To access this you will be sent a one time link to the portal to book your exam.
You can take your exam at any time that suits you, there is no time limit on when you sit the exam. However, you will need to ensure that you are following the updated syllabus if you take it 6 months after the course.
The exam itself is held via remote proctor (essentially, someone watches you complete the exam). You can do this at any location convenient to you. You will use your own device for the exam. The exam is a 90 minute closed book exam. The pass rate is 26/40 (65%).
If you have a disability or English is not your foreign language you may be entitled to extra time, further information can be found here.
The syllabus places compliance with the Act in the context of good information practices within the organisation. On attaining the Certificate, award holders will:
- Know how specific exemptions might apply to requests for information including the application of the public interest test
- Have a clear and balanced approach to applying legal judgements in accordance with the law and relevant case law.
- Understand the implementation of internal management procedures to support freedom of information and environmental information legislation.
- Hold knowledge of the definition of the Act and how it interacts with related legislation, the Environmental Information Regulations 2004, UK-GDPR, EU-GDPR and the Data Protection Act 2018.
- Know how to develop internal procedures to support your authority’s compliance with the FOI Act, including those relating to internal reviews.
- How to apply the legislation in a practical setting relevant to your work.
- How to prepare clear advice to colleagues as well as the public.
Who Is The Course For
This qualification is primarily aimed at those who are managing or responding to requests for information from the public or working in this subject area, for instance, Information Managers.
- Information Managers
- FOI Practitioners
- Information Governance leads
- Data Protection Officers
- Solicitors advising on information law issues
- Press Officers
- Those who have responsibility for managing and responding to requests for information from the public.
It is also relevant to private sector organisations that are either affected directly by freedom of information and environmental information legislation or indirectly by their contractual relationship with a public authority.
Frequently Asked Questions
- Are there any entry requirements to the course?
- There are no mandatory requirements for candidates to be able to undertake this certificate qualification, although candidates will need a good standard of written English. It will be advantageous for candidates to have some prior understanding of freedom of information law, legal training, or experience of, or an aptitude for, applying the law.
- What comes next after the Practitioner Course in Data Protection?
- If you are acting as a Data Protection Officer, we would also recommend you do our 2-day CPD accredited ‘Role of the Data Protection Officer Course’.
- How long does the course take?
- Our course runs for 5 days (9 am-4.30 pm)
- Can I just sit the exam rather than do the course?
- We can certainly do this for you, just get in touch with us at firstname.lastname@example.org
If you have completed the course and would like access to the free templates you can request them from us directly.
If you have forgotten the password, get in touch with us via the contact form below.