The National Qualifications Authority of Ireland is an agency of the Department of Education and Skills and the Department of Enterprise, Trade and Innovation and was set up in February 2001. It has responsibility for developing and maintaining the National Framework of Qualifications and has three principal objects which are set out in the Qualifications (Education & Training) Act 1999
- the establishment and maintenance of a framework of qualifications for the development, recognition and award of qualifications based on standards of knowledge, skill or competence to be acquired by learners
- the establishment and promotion of the maintenance and improvement of the standards of awards of the further and higher education and training sector, other than in the existing universities.
- the promotion and facilitation of access, transfer and progression throughout the span of education and training provision.