The problem with the Quality Assurance Agency's qualifications framework is its failure to distinguish between different kinds of qualifications.
Vocational qualifications are taught mainly through problem-based learning and apprenticeships, leading to "know-how". Academic degrees are taught mainly through conceptual development and lead to "knowledge" and "understanding".
It is possible to rank within each but to rank across them is meaningless. Underpinning problem-solving are understanding and know-how: the former is an aid for problems that lie beyond practice; the latter for innovations in practice. Both are valuable in a profession, so calling only one of them vocational is a mistake.
John Sparkes Hemel Hempstead