ATA vs VTAA

What is the difference between the IMI ATA Light Vehicle Inspection Technician accreditation and the ABC Awards VTAA Vehicle Technician Accredited Assessment?

Both the IMI ATA Light Vehicle Inspection Technician accreditation and the VTAA Accreditation serve as a DVSA recognised entry route to becoming an MOT Tester.

The IMI Light Vehicle Inspection Technician accreditation formally known and well recognised as ATA (Automotive Technician Accreditation) has been running since 2012. DVSA recently approached ABC awards to have an alternative product in the market place.

Premier MOT have worked on the development and piloted both the ATA Light Vehicle Inspection Technician and VTAA. This gives us a very good insight of the benefits of the two options to our students.

Firstly, the difference between an accreditation and qualification. A qualification is recognised by OFQUAL as a formal qualification. An example of an official qualification is a level 3 NVQ in vehicle maintenance and repair. This full qualification covers all areas of the vehicle maintenance and repair subject. This type of qualification would often be delivered at college for over three years and is aimed at training someone with no experience. The main objective of this qualification is to take an untrained student and make them fully qualified.

However an accreditation is a way to show the knowledge and skill of an experienced professional without the need of a formal qualification. Both ABC awards and IMI have taken elements of the level 3 qualification in vehicle maintenance and repair to create a specialist accreditation which is recognised by the awarding body and DVSA as an equivalent to a level 3 qualification.

Some of the differences are:

IMI LVI Accreditation ABC Awards VTAA Accreditation
Well known and recognised by DVSA, running since 2012 New route recognised by DVSA
Reaccreditation required every three years No need for reaccreditation, VTAA is permanent.
One 30 question exam and one 10 questions exam One 50 question exam.
5 practical assessments each 1 hour long 4 practcial assessment areas, each area has 4 x 10 min assessments.

If you fail one task you do not have to resit the whole practical area just that one task.