COMMON CAUSES FOR PROBLEMS WITH SUBMISSIONS TO THE ACS
The following are some common problems encountered with applications leading to delays in processing, applicants possibly missing interview rounds, as well as incurring additional time and cost in re-submission of material or whole portfolios. There is also a £25 administration charge should your application be rejected on receipt. Ensure you have checked your application before your submission and avoid these errors.
The following are 10 common errors introduced into applications by candidates through not heeding the regulations and guideline documents for the completion of the application form and preparation of the portfolio.
These have caused candidates to have their application delayed which could lead to missing deadlines and not being interviewed during the current round or complete rejection of the application leading to loss of £25 administration charges and having to prepare further portfolios as the submitted material is securely disposed of and never returned to applicants.
Applicants are urged to read carefully and follow the application guideline documents published on this website.
It is not for the ACS Administrative Office nor the Assessors to compensate for poorly presented applications.
- TOO MANY PAGES IN THE PORTFOLIO. Presenting a portfolio with excessive pages. The target is 60 for Route ONE and 120 for Route TWO. It is not 80 and 160 respectively which are the MAXIMUM allowable number of pages. A Route ONE portfolio of 81 pages or more will be rejected immediately on receipt. Similarly a Route TWO of 161 pages or more. With good management and communication skills, successful portfolios can be produced around 60 pages and 120 pages respectively.
- CARELESS PRESENTATION OF PORTFOLIO. Assessors are busy people. Your portfolio should be produced in a format to make it as easy as possible for the assessors to find the information they require to substantiate your competences. Poor cross referencing, careless layout or presenting material without any covering script explaining which competence(s) that relates to and what you benefitted from it, is an indication of your standard of work and will cause them to reject the portfolio and not take you to interview.
- PRESENTING AN INCOMPLETE PORTFOLIO. The portfolio must contain all the sections listed in the guidelines including the Appendix ONE document. All these pages must be sequentially numbered and are included in the page allowances above.
- MAKING STATEMENTS WITHOUT SUPPORTING EVIDENCE. The choice of evidence is all important and supporting it with explanatory script as indicated above. Making statements without supporting evidence is not satisfactory and will lead to requests for the supporting evidence, or rejection of the portfolio requiring a full re-submission.
- PHOTOREDUCING PAGES. The guidelines stipulate that reducing two or more pages to fit on a single A4 sheet in order to meet the total page limits is not acceptable, as the resultant information becomes illegible in many cases. Assessors will either reject the application or require full size data to be provided thus delaying your application.
- OVERLOOKING TO INCLUDE THE FEE CHEQUE. Applications will not be progressed until a cheque for the full fees is provided. Bank transfer is possible but must be arranged in advance with the AdministrativeOffice.
- INCORRECT FEES. The current fees are clearly indicated on the last page of the current Application Form. Ensure you do not use an outdated form and check if the fees have changed. ACS application fees usually change for applications RECEIVED after January 1st in any year - irrespective of the time of interview.
- OMITTING YOUR PHOTOGRAPH - Since September 2009 the revised application form requires a passport style photograph securely glued to the last page. You application will be held until this is provided, if omitted with your initial submission.
- USING OUTDATED APPLICATION FORMS, APPENDIX ONE TABLE OR GUIDELINES. The current version of all ACS documentation is always available on the website for download. Updates are rare, but it is your responsibility to ensure you are using the correct current version at submission to ensure all the information required is included and presented in the necessary format. Updates are clearly highlighted in the News items of this website. Your application will be rejected if this is not followed.
- FORGETTING TO BRING YOUR PHOTOGRAPHIC ID TO THE INTERVIEW. Since September 2009, proof of identity of the candidate must be brought to the interview and noted by the assessors on the Assessment Form. Acceptable forms of ID are given in the guidelines and the ACS certificate will not be provided if not presented. The interview may continue at the assessors' discretion but the required evidence, countersigned for ratification by your supervisor, must be provided thus delaying any certification and subsequent HCPC registration for successful candidates.