• The National Skills Qualifications Framework (NSQF) is a competency-based framework that organizes all qualifications according to a series of levels of knowledge, skills and aptitude.
  • These levels, graded from one to ten, are defined in terms of learning outcomes which the learner must possess regardless of whether they are obtained through formal, non-formal or informal learning. NSQF in India was notified on 27th December 2013.
  • All other frameworks, including the NVEQF (National Vocational Educational Qualification Framework) released by the Ministry of HRD, stand superceded by the NSQF.
  • Under NSQF, the learner can acquire the certification for competency needed at any level through formal, non-formal or informal learning. In that sense, the NSQF is a quality assurance framework. Presently, more than 100 countries have, or are in the process of developing national qualification frameworks.
  • The NSQF is anchored at the National Skill Development Agency (NSDA) and is being implemented through the National Skills Qualifications Committee (NSQC) which comprises of all key stakeholders.
  • The NSQC’s functions amongst others include approving NOSs/QPs, approving accreditation norms, prescribing guidelines to address the needs of disadvantages sections, reviewing inter-agency disputes and alignment of NSQF with international qualification frameworks.


Specific outcomes expected from implementation of NSQF are:

  1. Mobility between vocational and general education by alignment of degrees with NSQF
  2. Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL), allowing transition from non-formal to organised job market
  3. Standardised, consistent, nationally acceptable outcomes of training across the country through a national quality assurance framework
  4. Global mobility of skilled workforce from India, through international equivalence of NSQF
  5. Mapping of progression pathways within sectors and cross-sectorally
  6. Approval of NOS/QPs as national standards for skill training