OTHM Level 3 Diploma in Reflexology

The OTHM Level 3 Diploma in Reflexology consists of 5 mandatory units for a combined total of 50 credits. The main aim of the qualification is to enable learners to gain the necessary practical and theoretical skills in order to provide reflexology treatments to the general public and to gain employment in the beauty/complementary therapy industry.

Successful completion of this qualification will equip learners with the underpinning knowledge and skills required to succeed in employment or further studies.

Entry requirements

The OTHM Level 3 Diploma in Reflexology qualification can be offered to learners from age 16. It is recommended that learners hold a Level 2 Diploma in Beauty Therapy or equivalent qualification.

OTHM does not specify entry requirements for these qualifications. OTHM ensures that learners admitted to the programme have sufficient capability at the right level to undertake the learning and assessment.

OTHM centres must ensure learners are recruited with integrity onto appropriate qualifications that will meet their needs, enable and facilitate learning and achievement enable progression. The qualification is offered in English.

English requirements: If a learner is not from a majority English-speaking country must provide evidence of English language competency. For more information visit English Language Expectations page.


OTHM qualifications at Level 3 represent practical knowledge, skills, capabilities and competences that are assessed in academic terms as being equivalent to GCE AS/A Levels.

Qualification structure

The OTHM Level 3 Diploma in Reflexology consists of 5 mandatory units for a combined total of 50 credits, 370 hours Total Qualification Time (TQT) and 250 Guided Learning Hours (GLH) for the completed qualification.

Mandatory units

  • Learners must complete all 5 units from this group – 50 credits
  • Health and Safety Practice in the Salon (8 credits)
  • Client Care and Communication (6 credits)
  • Anatomy and Physiology for Reflexology (14 credits)
  • Principles and Practices of Complementary Therapy (10 credits)
  • Provide Reflexology for Complementary Therapy (12 credits)

Duration and delivery

Teaching staff

This includes those who develop and/or deliver the course content.

This may be undertaken by a team who must demonstrate that within the team, provision is made for subject-specific knowledge.

OTHM recommend it is standard best practice for the qualification to be delivery by qualified teachers. Additionally, in the interest of best practice, teachers should themselves have an accredited academic qualification relating to the core and modality specific knowledge/competence.

Centres must demonstrate that the teaching team possess the required subject knowledge and have achieved academic qualifications of the relevant level to inform, develop and deliver high quality program content in the specific subject, at the required level.

The currency of their practice should also be verified in the application, through explanation of how teachers/educators maintain and update their knowledge skills and competence, through for revalidation, peer review, appraisal or application for recognition from a relevant authority.

In order to deliver this qualification, it is standard best practice teaching staff:

  • hold a postgraduate teaching qualification, e.g. Post Graduate Certificate in Education (PGCE) or equivalent
  • be occupational experts and have qualifications, knowledge and understanding in the area relevant to the qualification content. This knowledge must be at the same level as or higher than the training being delivered.
  • understand the qualification’s structure and content, and the learning outcomes they are delivering.
  • have recent and relevant industry experience in the specific area they are delivering.
  • undertake activities which contribute to their Continuing Professional Development (CPD)

All those delivering units and/or observing and assessing practice for the OHTM Level 3 Diploma in Beauty Therapy must have all of the following:

  • access to appropriate guidance and support; and
  • on-going participation in related programme quality assurance processes.

Centre staffing will be checked as part of the centre approval process, in which we will ask for copies of CV’s and teaching certificates. Centres are required as part of their signed centre agreement to inform OTHM if there are any changes. The external quality assurer will also review and confirm this at the time of EQA.

Centre staff may undertake more than one role, e.g., tutor and assessor or internal quality assurer but cannot internally verify their own assessments.

Assessors and Internal Quality Assurers

Assessor/Internal Quality Assurer TAQA qualifications are valued as qualifications for centre staff, but they are not currently a requirement for the qualification.


To be approved as an assessor, the individual must provide evidence to show they meet the occupational competence criteria specified for the qualification(s) they will be assessing.

Internal assessment includes the synoptic assignment and clinical case studies.

To assess learners working towards this qualification, it is standard best practice assessors:

  • hold a suitable, relevant assessor qualification or be working towards one.
  • be occupational experts and have qualifications, knowledge and understanding in the area relevant to the qualification content. This knowledge must be at the same level as or higher than the training being delivered.
  • understanding of the assessment process
  • undertake activities which contribute to their Continuing Professional Development (CPD)
  • have recent and relevant industry experience in the specific area they are assessing.
  • have credible experience of assessment within a teaching and/or training environment.
  • Assessors must assess learners’ work in accordance with the assessment and grading requirements set out in this specification.

Internal Quality Assurers (IQA)

Centres must have a rigorous internal quality assurance system in place.

Centres must have an IQA to ensure assessment decisions are consistently applied between assessors, and that learner’s work meets the required standard. Each assessor’s work must be checked and confirmed by the IQA. Assessment decisions must be standardised to ensure that all learners’ work has been assessed to the same standard and is fair, valid and reliable.

The IQA must observe assessors carrying out assessments, review assessment decisions from the evidence provided and hold standardisation meetings with the assessment team to ensure consistency in the use of documentation and interpretation of the qualification requirements. Evidence of internal quality assurance must be recorded, retained and made available for the External Quality Assurer (EQA)

Continuing Professional Development (CPD)

Centres must support their staff to ensure that they have current knowledge of the occupational area, that delivery, mentoring, training, assessment and verification is in line with best practice, and that it takes account of any national or legislative developments. CPD records of all staff members must be available for external quality assurance.

Record Keeping

Centres must produce and retain records that include:

  • learners on programme, including learner name, date of birth, contact details, assessor’s name, IQA’s name, and registration date with
  • assessment plans and IQA sampling plans
  • learner assessment records detailing who assessed what and when, the assessment methods used, the location of the supporting evidence, and the assessment decision/grade awarded with supporting evidence
  • records of internal quality assurance activity detailing who internally quality assured what and when, the sample selected and its rationale, records of IQA standardisation meetings, assessor and IQA competence records, monitoring records of assessor/IQA progress towards achievement of the relevant assessor/internal quality assurance qualifications and requirements for the retention of learner evidence.

Assessment and verification

OTHM will include a clear outline of the assessment method required for each unit within the qualification specification. Where a particular assessment method can be delivered across a range of units this will be highlighted.

The qualifications are criterion referenced, based on the achievement of all the specified learning outcomes and assessment criteria. Quality assured assessment material are made available to centres by OTHM.

Delivery of this qualification should be a combination of practical and theory activities. Tutors are advised to use a variety of different delivery methods to engage and motivate learners.

Centres are required to undertake standardisation activities between assessors, internal quality assurance staff and evidence made available to OTHM at the time of external quality assurance or upon request.

To achieve a ‘pass’ for this qualification a learner must have successfully achieved all the assessment criteria for each unit of the qualification.

Award will be confirmed following confirmation by OTHM that all assessment has been undertaken appropriately and internal quality assurance has confirmed application of all required reliability and validity of quality procedures.

At this point, OTHM will undertake external quality assurance to confirm that award can be recommended in accordance with the published OTHM Quality Assurance Policy.

Specific assessment guidance and relevant marking criteria for each unit are made available in the Assignment Brief document. These are made available to centres immediately after registration of one or more learners.

Assessment will be both formative and summative and will be recorded in a learner logbook to provide a dynamic learning account.

Formative Assessment

A range of skills must be assessed formatively and summatively. The purpose of formative assessment is to provide opportunities for learners to practice their skills to a level where they are deemed ‘ready’ to be assessed summatively. This is crucially important to minimise the risk of poor practice on real people that will also form part of the learner’s summative assessment.

Centres must provide clear evidence that each learner has practiced all required skills in a suitable environment.

The centre will use an internal assessor to observe the learner’s performance and to sign off learners’ performance.

Learners will receive feedback at each formative opportunity to provide learning opportunities in keeping with the principles of formative assessment.

Formative assessment will also be recorded in a learner logbook to provide a dynamic learning account.

Summative Assessment

Summative assessment is used to evaluate learner competence and progression at the end of a unit or component. Summative assessment should take place when the assessor deems that the learner is at a stage where competence can be demonstrated.

The purpose of summative assessment is to evaluate learners’ competencies and capabilities at the end of a course of study.

This can be achieved using a variety of assessment methods, as follows:

  • Observation of Skills – learners will demonstrate their competencies and capabilities across a range of units bringing together their knowledge and skills in order to provide safe and effective consultations, treatments and post-treatment follow up.
  • Learner Logbook – learners will record all aspects of consultations, treatments and post-treatment follow up which are observed and supervised. The logbook will also provide a reflective element on practice to demonstrate development and learning. The learner logbook should include learner reflections using images, forms, contemporaneous notes etc. The logbook is mapped to the qualification assessment criteria and will be assessed by centre assessors against these. Feedback will be provided to learners following each activity to provide dynamic and on-going learning from which the learner can benefit.
  • Written assignments – these will be used to measure the learner’s knowledge and understanding of the supporting theory and include tasks on health and safety, risk management, client consultations, beauty treatment knowledge and evaluation of performance.
  • A&P Pack/Unit Packs – these are questions set to assess knowledge components in the units.
    The completion of the packs are a compulsory assessment task to be set under centre-controlled conditions. The Packs are internally marked and verified by the centre assessor and internal verifier and externally quality assured by OTHM.
    Learners will be allowed a maximum of three attempts to meet these requirements.

    Centres have overall responsibility for the administration of the A&P controlled assessment tasks and must follow the guidance in the OTHM Assessment Policy.


Successful completion of the OTHM Level 3 Diploma in Reflexology provides learners with the opportunity for workplace and academic progressions to a wide range of relevant undergraduate programmes including OTHM Level 3 and 4 beauty diplomas.

For more information visit University Progressions page www.othm.org.uk

Quality, Standards & Recognitions

By complying with our regulators and meeting university progression requirements we ensure the high-quality standards of all our qualifications and assessments.

University Progressions

The local and global recognition has enabled our graduates to enhance their employability skills as well as to join degree and master top-up programmes.

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