AoFAQ Level 2 Award for Working as a Security Officer within the Private Security Industry (RQF)

Key Notes

AoFAQ Level 2 Award for Working as a Security Officer within the Private Security Industry (RQF)

This Regulated Qualification is ideal for anyone wishing to become a Security Officer

As this is a Regulated Qualification, an Employer who obtains training from an AoFAQ Approved Centre is not required to carry out any due diligence on the training provider in order to ensure the suitability of the training (HSE statement).

Also approved by the Association of First Aiders.

Course Duration: Typically 3 days

Compliance and Regulatory Requirements

The AoFAQ Level 2 Award for Working as a Security Officer within the Private Security Industry (RQF), is designed to meet the training and licensing requirements of the Security Industry Authority (SIA) – which regulates the sector under the terms set out in the Private Security Industry Act 2001. This qualification has been accredited by the regulators Ofqual, Qualification Wales, CCEA and SIA.

Key Points


National Qualification Number: 603/1156/3

Qualification Type: RQF

Guided Learning Hours: 28  (this qualification requires a minimum of 23 classroom hrs.)

Class size maximum: 12 Learners (1 Trainer)

Certificate Price £30 + VAT

Learning Outcomes

Unit 1 Working within the Private Security Industry

Working as a Security Officer Learning Outcomes and Assessment Criteria:

This for the first unit of the Security Officer qualification

1.   Understand the legislation as it applies to the individual in carrying out a licensable activity.
1.1.Explain the main differences between Civil and Criminal Law
1.2.State the main aims of the Private Security Industry Act 2001
1.3.Demonstrate an understanding of equality and diversity

2.   Understand the importance of safe working practices to comply with legal requirements.
2.1.State the importance of Health and Safety in the work environment
2.2.Explain the term ‘duty of care’
2.3.Describe the responsibilities of employees, employers and the self-employed under the Health and Safety at Work legislation
2.4.State the methods of safe manual handling
2.5.Describe how to minimise risk to personal safety and security Identify typical risks and hazards (including slips, trips and falls)
2.6.Identify safety signs and signals
2.7.Explain the reporting procedures for Health and Safety accidents and incidents
2.8.Identify who to contact in first aid situations.

3.   Understand fire procedures in the workplace
3.1.Describe basic fire prevention measures
3.2.List the three elements that must be present for fire to exist
3.3.Identify the classifications of fire
3.4.Describe the different types of fire extinguishers and their uses
3.5.State other types of fire fighting equipment
3.6.Explain the actions to be taken upon discovering a fire
3.7.State the importance of understanding fire control panels
3.8.Describe the importance of understanding fire evacuation procedures
3.9.Describe the role and responsibilities of a fire marshal.

4.   Understand emergencies and the importance of emergency procedures
4.1.Define the term “emergency” when used in the workplace
4.2.List different types of emergencies, and the associated problems and actions that should be taken when they occur
4.3.Explain the procedure for making emergency calls
4.4.List the actions which may be taken in the event of personal injury, or a security threat
4.5.Describe behaviours that could indicate unusual or suspicious activity
4.6.Know how to identify vulnerable children or adults and the actions that should be taken
4.7.Identify potential terror threats and how to respond to suspicious activity
4.8.Identify their role in the business continuity plan after the event.

5.   Understand the main characteristics of the Private Security Industry
5.1.Define the key purpose of the private security industry
5.2.State the aims and functions of the Security Industry Authority (SIA)
5.3.Describe the required standards of behaviour of a private security operative.
5.4.Give examples of different sectors within the private security industry
5.5.State the benefits of linking in with local crime reduction initiatives.

6.   Understand the importance of effective communication skills and good customer care 
6.1.Explain the basic elements of effective communication
6.2.Identify the different types of communication
6.3.State the importance of effective communication in delivering good customer care
6.4.Explain diverse customer needs and expectations
6.5.State the principles of good customer care
6.6.Describe best practice in relation to telephone and radio communications
6.7.State the use of the NATO phonic alphabet.

Unit 2 Working as a Security Officer within the Private Security Industry

Working as a Security Officer Learning Outcomes and Assessment Criteria:

This for the second unit of the Security Officer qualification

1.   Understand the role of a security officer within the private security industry.
1.1 State the main objectives and duties of a security officer
1.2 Explain the purpose of assignment instructions
1.3 Explain the purpose of control rooms
1.4 List the equipment required by a security officer
1.5 Define the term ‘confidentiality’.

2.   Understand the importance of, and reasons for, patrolling.
2.1 State the importance of patrolling
2.2 Explain the different types of patrols, including patrols made in vehicles, their importance, and the checks that may be made
2.3 Identify actions to be taken before starting a patrol
2.4 Explain patrolling procedures and techniques
2.5 Explain the importance of vigilance and of using local and site knowledge when patrolling
2.6 State the importance of check calls
2.7 Identify common incidents encountered on patrol, and state the actions to be taken

3. Understand the control of access and egress to a site. 
3.1 Define the purpose of access and egress control
3.2 List different methods of providing access and egress control
3.3 List typical duties relating to access and egress control
3.4 Explain the powers and identification requirements of statutory agencies relating to access and egress control.

4.   Explain and identify basic search procedures.
4.1 List the conditions that have to be in place before a search can be carried out
4.2 Explain a security officer’s right of search
4.3 Demonstrate how to search people and their property and vehicles safely
4.4 Identify the different types of search
4.5 State the actions which may need to be taken in the event of a refusal to be searched
4.6 Describe typical search documentation
4.7 State typical actions to be taken when a prohibited or restricted item is found during a search
4.8 State the cultural and religious considerations in searching individuals
4.9 State additional considerations when searching people with a disability
4.10 State additional considerations for searching of minors
4.11 State the precautions to take when conducting a search
4.12 State the possible hazards that might be encountered when conducting a search

5.   Identify the different types of electronic and physical protection systems in the security environment
5.1 Explain how electronic and physical protection systems can help security officers in their job
5.2 State the purposes of the different types of electronic and physical protection systems
5.3 Describe the main features and functions of electronic and physical protection systems
5.4 Describe operator controls and indicators
5.5 List the actions that may be taken in response to different types of alarm activations
5.6 Explain the meaning of the term ‘false alarm’
5.7 Briefly describe potential threats to electronic and physical protection systems.

6. Understand the law and its relevance to the role of a security officer.
6.1 Define relevant legislation and crimes
6.2 State the different types of trespass
6.3 State the correct procedures to be used when dealing with a trespasser
6.4 State the powers of arrest of a security operative
6.5 Explain arrest procedures
6.6 List the different types of evidence
6.7 State the action to be taken when preserving evidence
6.8 State reporting procedures following a crime

7.   Understand reporting and record keeping relevant to a security officer.
7.1 Explain the reasons and importance for raising an incident report and the evidential content required
7.2 List the different types of reports
7.3 State the basic techniques to be used in report writing
7.4 Explain the use of a notebook and evidential content required
7.5 Explain the content and importance of a hand-over report and briefing.

Unit 3 Conflict Management within the Private Security Industry

Working as a Security Officer Learning Outcomes and Assessment Criteria:

This for the third unit of the Security Officer qualification

1.   Understand how to recognise, assess and reduce risk in conflict situations
1.1.Identify the most common situations where there is a risk of escalation into violence
1.2.Demonstrate an understanding of the importance of positive and constructive communication to avoid conflict
1.3.Explain employers policy, guidance and procedures relating to workplace violence
1.4.Identify potential risk of violence towards yourself and others
1.5.Continually assess the level of threat posed in a conflict situation
1.6. Identify appropriate measures to reduce or eliminate the risk.
1.7.Recognise human responses to emotional and threatening situations
1.8. Identify the conditions and behaviours that trigger or inhibit an angry response in people
1.9.Choose the most appropriate responses to a situation involving potential conflict.
1.10.Explain the importance of adopting an appropriate initial response
1.11.Identify ways in which the expectations of the customer are managed towards a realistic understanding of the situation
1.12. Demonstrate an understanding of the attitude/behaviour cycle and how to prevent escalation.

2.   Understand how to use communications effectively in difficult and emotive situations and to de-escalate conflict. 
2.1.Identify the different ways in which communication can be blocked
2.2.Demonstrate an understanding of how to overcome communication blocks by using active listening techniques
2.3.Recognise the importance of non-verbal communication when dealing with emotionally charged situations.
2.4.Identify how to work effectively with a colleague to de-escalate conflict
2.5.Recognise an escalation in risk and how to manage anger and aggression
2.6.Recognise the difference between assertion and aggression
2.7.Choose appropriate assertive behaviour for confronting unacceptable behaviour
2.8.Recognise the importance of providing exit routes and space when dealing with an angry person.

3.   Understand how to identify simple strategies for resolving conflict and how they can learn from conflict.
3.1.Explain what empathy is and how to use it to recognise the customer’s view of the situation
3.2.Explain how problem solving can lead to an acceptable resolution to a problem or issue
3.3.Recognise a win-win approach to dealing with conflict situations.
3.4.Identify how to seek help and make use of support services
3.5.Explain the importance of reflecting and learning from the experience of conflict
3.6.Recognise the importance of sharing good practice
3.7.Recognise the importance of contributing to long term solutions to re-occurring problems and issues.

Qualification Assessment


This qualification is assessed by the following means:

    1.  Multiple choice questions 

    2.  Practical Assessment

Multiple choice questions are used to assess the learners underpinning knowledge. Question papers are available from the compliance department. Please read the instructions carefully.

AoFAQ Centre and Trainer Support Materials

The following is exclusively available from AoFAQ  to support the qualification:

Qualification Specification:

  • This gives details of all the Learning Outcomes with Assessment Criteria and full requirements for the qualification.

Scheme of Work:

  • This is a detailed construction on how to present the qualification to Learners.

Trainer, Assessor and IQA Requirements

Trainer, Assessor Requirements

Trainers/Assessors must:

Subject knowledge or experience 

Trainers/Assessors must have achieved as a minimum:

•Level 3 Award in Education and Training (RQF),
•Certificate in Education
•Post Graduate Certificate in Education
•SVQ Level 3 and 4 in Learning and Development

Trainers/Assessors must also show occupational expertise, the SIA requires that:

•Trainers have 3 years front-line operational experience (relevant to their delivery of training) within the last 10 years.
•Undertake and be active in Continuous Professional Development (CPD) in order to keep their occupational expertise up to date. As guidance, a minimum of 30 hours CPD activity each year is required with evidence made available upon an External Quality Assurance visit. Suitable CPD activities include but are not limited to the following:
•Attending relevant training events, conference as seminars
•Continuing work experience within their sector
•Increasing professional knowledge through home study


Teaching/Assessor qualifications

• Post Graduate Certificate in Education (PGCE)
• Certificate in Education (CERT ED)
• Diploma in Education (DIP ED)
• Preparing to teach in the lifelong learning sector (PTLLS)
• Certificate in teaching in the lifelong learning sector (CTLLS)
• Diploma in teaching in the lifelong learning sector (DTLLS)
• Master of Arts in Education (MA ED)
• Master of Arts in Professional Development, Education and Training (MA PDET)
• Professional trainer certificate
• IHCD Instructional methods course
• Level 3 or 4 NVQ Learning and Development
• CIPD Certificate in Learning Practice
• Proof of 30 hours of training in any subject (must be verifiable)
This is not an exhaustive list, therefore if your teaching or training qualification is not listed, please contact us.
Note: This list is not exhaustive.

Trainers/Assessors should also be able to provide a detailed, chronological list of evidence to show that they have regularly provided Security assessments during the previous three years. If this is limited, evidence of other first-aid assessments may be provided.

No formal Trainer/Assessor qualifications

It is recognised that trainer/assessors may not hold formal qualifications but may have significant experience in undertaking these roles. It is expected that the trainer/assessors be registered and working towards formal qualifications within one year and that the qualifications are gained within two years.

During this period a portfolio should be maintained and include details of knowledge and experience gained and the time period over which they were applied, and any contributing training undertaken and the learning outcomes achieved. There should be evidence that the individual has conducted at least two practical and two theoretical first-aid training/assessing sessions under the supervision of a qualified assessor.

Internal Quality Assurers

Internal Quality Assurers must:

Occupational knowledge and competence in the subject ‐ evidenced by:
• Holding a relevant subject qualification or suitable experience
Knowledge and competency in internal quality assurance – evidenced by:
• Holding a qualification/completing CPD training or working towards a suitable qualification.
Internal Quality Assurers must:
• Have knowledge of the requirements of the qualification they
are quality assuring at the time any assessment is taking place.
• Have knowledge and understanding of the role of assessors.
• Visit and observe assessments.
• Carry out other related internal quality assurance.

Note: It is understood that not all IQA’s will be qualified initially, and that sufficient time should be considered to achieve these qualifications. During this time centres should ensure that IQA’s are following the principles set out in the current Learning and Development NOS 11 Internally monitor and maintain the quality of assessment. This could be evidenced by holding a qualification such as:

• SQA Accredited Learning and Development Unit 11 Internally Monitor and Maintain the Quality of Workplace Assessment

• QCF Qualifications based on the Learning and Development NOS 11 Internally Monitor and Maintain the Quality of Assessment

• Level 4 Award in the Internal Quality Assurance of Assessment Processes and Practice (QCF)

• Level 4 Certificate in Leading the Internal Quality Assurance of Assessment Processes and Practice (QCF)

• V1 or D34

Note: This list is not exhaustive.

Links and Downloads

Information Links
 Qualification Specification L2 Working as a Security Officer Qualification Specification