Once you have consent to assess any of our unit standards, you'll need to participate in moderation to ensure consistent and fair assessment practices that meet the national standard. We've got information about the different types of moderation and how it all happens, on this page.

Moderation is the process of ensuring that assessment practices are valid, consistent and fair, and at the national standard. We are responsible for managing a moderation system for schools and providers assessing our standards. 

Ultimately, we are looking to ensure that schools and providers are making consistent and reliable judgments about the work that learners are assessed on.

There are two components to our moderation system: pre-assessment and post-assessment moderation


Post-assessment moderation

Skills Active publishes an annual moderation plan every year for schools and providers. We do this in order to make sure moderation is fair and consistent across all unit standards.

Schools and providers must take part in moderation as part of their consent and moderation requirements (CMRs) with NZQA.

Our Annual Post Moderation Plan identifies which unit standards will be moderated during the year, and what types of moderation processes will be used. We may also conduct further post moderation, on top of what’s outlined in the plan. This will be determined by reporting activity, previous moderation outcomes, and the risk levels of unit standards.

We send moderation requests to schools and providers by email, every quarter. These requests include the unit standards, the number of assessments, and a due date for submission.

If the moderation contact for your organisation has changed, or you have questions about the moderation process, please contact us at quality@skillsactive.org.nz.


Pre-assessment moderation

This moderation looks at the assessment materials you have developed. All of your assessment material needs to go through pre-assessment moderation before it's used. 

Did you know: You can purchase our assessment resources, which have already gone through a pre-assessment moderation process?  Ask us about this option!

If you're submitting your own assessment material, you'll want to check that you can meet the specific requirements for moderation, which are outlined in the relevant consent and moderation requirements documents (CMRs). 

There's also a cost associated with this process, which is outlined in the CMRs. You can find these documents on the NZQA website.

Find the CMR documents you're looking for, either in the list below, or by searching for the reference number here.

Ref: 0099 - community recreation, environment, outdoor recreation and ngā mahi ā te rēhia, snowsport, sport, fitness, and diving

Ref: 0102 – for outdoor recreation and ngā mahi ā te rēhia

Ref: 0069 – for fitness

Ref: 0180 – for diving

Ref: 0050 – for outdoor equipment, snowsport and diving 


We only moderate a few standards each time we go through post-assessment moderation. The selection of unit standards is informed by: 

  • Whether they are being assessed for the first time
  • Whether they have been reviewed in the last 12 months
  • Whether they have a potential health and safety risk
  • Whether there are any industry concerns
  • Making sure we get a spread of domains, levels and high-use unit standards.

How it works   

Our post-assessment moderation is conducted using postal moderation.

This is the main type of external moderation event that we use. It involves you sending us through some of your assessment materials, for one of our moderators to look at. 

Steps to moderation

Getting assessment samples 

We'll write to you asking for samples of your assessments. You'll have four weeks to get this information to us.

Make sure you include a cover sheet with your samples - these can be downloaded below.

Preparing the moderation report

We'll moderate your samples and pull together a report. If we identify any big issues, we might contact you to discuss these before completing the report. 

Communicating moderation outcomes 

We'll send you the final moderation report and return your assessment material to you. You have the right to appeal a moderation decision, in which case you'll need to get in touch with our team. 

Non-compliance with moderation

If you don't comply with a moderation request from us, we follow a non-compliance process. This can happen when:

Assessment materials and learner samples are not submitted when requested

Assessment materials do not meet the national standard

Assessor decisions are not verified by the moderator for the learner samples.


For more information about the non-compliance process download the information sheet here

Find out more about

Consent to assess

Consent to assess is awarded to an organisation when it has shown it is capable of delivering an approved course or assessing against unit standards. 

Provider programme approval

This is for providers who need approval for a programme they have designed to fit with a qualification Skills Active has developed. 

Talk to us

If you've got any questions, get in touch and ask for our Quality Solutions team!

You can send your moderation materials to us at: 

Skills Active
PO Box 2183
Wellington 6140

Or email: quality@skillsactive.org.nz 



Forms and documents