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The SAET Syllabus Description

SAFETY ASSESSMENT EDUCATION AND TRAINING PROGRAMME
 
INTERNATIONAL ATOMIC ENERGY AGENCY
DIVISION OF NUCLEAR INSTALLATION SAFETY
 
It is recognized that a sustainable and successful nuclear energy programme requires a technical infrastructure including a workforce of highly specialized and well-educated professionals. A significant portion of this technical capacity must be dedicated to safety; especially to safety assessment competency, and as such is the basis for making the right decisions during planning, licensing, construction and operation of new nuclear facilities.
The goal of the IAEA Safety Assessment Education and Training (SAET) Programme is to provide Member States with a comprehensive safety assessment training Syllabus, hands-on training opportunities as well as training material for self-study or instructor-led courses. This document addresses only the SAET Syllabus summarizing the training content for development of necessary safety assessment competencies. The IAEA conducts many training activities that include workshops, seminars, fellowships etc. The training activities are developed and implemented based on needs and requirements of Member States and their participating organizations. SAET training activities can be conducted either as TC programme components or per direct request. The safety assessment educational activities, e.g. workshops, lectures, or distance learning courses are based on the SAET Syllabus.
The SAET Syllabus identifies knowledge needed for understanding of the safety requirements associated with the design and operation of nuclear power plants, and it identifies the specific knowledge and skills necessary for competent evaluation of safety cases and performance of safety analyses that demonstrate compliance with safety requirements.
The training Syllabus addresses education and training needs for personnel with little or no experience in safety assessment to staff seeking to gain specialized expertise in certain areas of safety assessments. Incorporating a broad scope of safety assessment training modules, the multi-level Syllabus is organized to accommodate participation of staff from differing professional backgrounds and educational levels. However, since the training audience is very wide the Syllabus is organized so that certain element can be used in support of training needs not of just practicing analysts but also management, other decision making personnel or professionals focused on regulatory reviews.
Safety competence is universal and needed in the design and operation of nuclear power plants as well as in regulatory activities. Therefore, the SAET approach to the profiles of competence needs for safety assessment as well as to training programme structure is based on a four-quadrant model proposed by IAEA in the methodology and process described in the document Guidelines for the Systematic Assessment of the Competence Needs of the staff of a Regulatory Body (SARCoN) described in Table 1, below. The SARCoN four quadrant model is a convenient tool for a global perspective on safety competence and for creation of consistent and comprehensive safety competence training programme of which SAET is a part.
Competence is the combination of knowledge, skills and attitudes (KSAs) needed by a person to perform a particular job or task -  all three domains are important and interrelate. Knowledge is the familiarity with someone or something, that can include facts, descriptions and information acquired through experience or education - it can refer to both the theoretical or practical understanding of a subject.  Skill is the learned capacity to perform a task to a specified standard. Attitudes are the feelings, opinions, way of thinking, perceptions, values, behaviour, and interests of an individual which allow a job or task to be undertaken to the best ability of that individual - attitudes cannot wholly be taught directly and are partly a consequence of organizational culture.
 
 
4. Personal and behavioural competences
4.1 Analytical thinking and problem solving
4.2 Personal effectiveness and self-management
4.3 Communication
4.4 Team work
4.5 Management and leadership
1. Competence related to the legal, regulatory and organizational basis
1.1 Legal basis
1.2 Regulatory policies and approaches
1.3 Regulations and regulatory guides
1.4 Management system
 
3. Competences related to regulatory body’s practices
3.1 Review and assessment
3.2 Authorization
3.3 Inspection
3.4 Enforcement
3.5 Development of regulations and guides
3.6 Investigations
3.7 Additional functions regulatory functions
2. Technical disciplines competences
 
2.1 Basic science and technology
2.2 Applied science and technology
2.3 Specialized science and technology
 
 
In Quadrant 1 are those competences related to the legal, regulatory and organizational basis.  They are mainly specific to the individual country and its regulatory organization. They relate to the knowledge of, and skills needed to comprehend and use the legal framework for regulatory control of facilities and activities, the specific regulatory policies and approaches, the regulations and regulatory guides and the regulatory body’s management system.
Quadrant 2 is the knowledge of, and skills needed to comprehend and apply science and/or engineering fundamentals in a particular field. This is divided into Basic science and technological knowledge in science and engineering fields; more advanced technology specific to nuclear power plants and related areas; and more specialized technology, engineering and science such as that needed by experts in technical fields (e.g. safety assessment methodologies and specialized areas like electrical systems and analogue and digital instrumentation and control systems).
Quadrant 3 comprises those competences related to regulatory body’s practices. They are those skills required by regulatory body and TSO staff to carry out the main functions of these organizations. They include competences needed to ensure that the license and the associated licensing documents are in compliance in form and contents with the regulatory requirements; the examination of safety cases and other documentation submitted by licensees in support of their justifications regarding installations and the forming of judgments on the adequacy of the documents and the processes used by the licensees in producing them; the gathering of information through objective review, observation and interview communications, and determining acceptability of information; the provision of a supportable recommendation of enforcement action in accordance with regulatory body policy; the capacity to develop regulations and guidance documents, including policies and procedures, containing practical steps on how regulatory requirements could be satisfied by the licensees and be adjudicated by the regulatory staff.
Quadrant 4 relates to those personal and behavioural competences needed to: approach problems objectively, gather and integrate information and develop a comprehensive understanding to reach conclusions whilst maintaining consistency, transparency, independence and equality;  personal effectiveness and self-management; planning and organization work;  self-management (working independently, exercising judgment and exhibiting flexibility); engaging in effective dialogue, representation and interaction with others; teamwork and working collaboratively with others; and management, project management and leadership.
Safety assessment competence relates to Quadrants 2 and 3. The SAET Syllabus is designed accordingly, addressing the technical knowledge and skills such as deterministic safety analyses (Quadrant 2) and the application of technical skills for review and regulatory activities. The SAET Syllabus focuses on safety analyses and assessment of engineering aspects important to safety and does not identify knowledge and skills related to authorization, inspection, enforcement and investigations -  such activities are being addressed by other IAEA NSNI training programmes.
The IAEA SAET Syllabus takes its roots from the IAEA Safety Standards, especially the Fundamental Safety Principles [1], and its content related to Quadrant 2 is based on the IAEA requirements for safety assessment of facilities and activities [2] and design safety requirements [3]. The SAET Syllabus identifies necessary training elements at various levels of expertise, pre-requisite requirements for students talking the SAET courses. It also identifies the overall contents of training elements, courses, and lectures and expected results. The Syllabus provides the basis for organizing and updating available training materials as well as for development of new materials where required.
The Syllabus provides guidance for IAEA experts and instructors in assessment of training needs and in development of safety assessment training projects. The training materials provide a uniform basis and should be tailored by the instructors to specific needs. This approach assures that training sponsored by the IAEA is focused, uniform and according to the IAEA Safety Standards which represent international consensus and best safety practices. As such the SAET sets high educational standards and its elements are compatible with academic course requirements. To assure quality and relevance of the Syllabus and of the overall SAET programme, an expert group comprised of IAEA staff members, representatives of academia and of the industry, reviews the programme on a regular basis.
The major focus of the training programme specified in the SAET Syllabus is on providing students with a good understanding and practical knowledge of:
 
1.   The fundamental principles which underlie nuclear safety as a basis of safety assessment;
2.   The safety requirements which ensure that those principles are met;
3.   The principles of safety analysis techniques used to demonstrate compliance;
4.   Practical experience of applying those techniques and of using the related computer codes and models employed to perform the analyses;
5.   Practical experience of the activities required to verify and validate analyses.
6.   Practical experience of reviewing and analysing safety cases for assessment of their compliance with safety requirements.
 
Items 1 through 3 correspond to the second quadrant of the SARCoN model, and the items 4 through 6 to the third quadrant. Items 1 through 3 are referred to as the essential safety assessment knowledge (EK) which should be mandatory for all regulators, TSO staff members supporting RAs, as well as staff of the operators/owners dealing with safety assessment and participating in safety related decision-making. 
The SAET Syllabus consists of five training programme elements (see table below). These training programmes are organized into training modules on two levels. The upper level represents Essential Safety Assessment Knowledge (EK) modules (in blue). The second level training modules related to Practical Applications (PA). The first EK module addresses the fundamental aspects of safety assessment providing the basis for specialized training in the area of deterministic and probabilistic safety analyses and other safety assessment activities. The second EK module is devoted to assessment of engineering factors important to safety such as defence in depth, safety classification and equipment classification.  The third module addresses deterministic safety analyses including the design basis and beyond design basis. The fourth module identifies training in the area of probabilistic safety analysis introducing all three levels of PSA. The fifth module provides overview of safety assessment applications. These five EK modules conform to the second quadrant of the competence model.
The SAET elements listed below the five EK modules are devoted to training in practical applications related to the EK modules. For example, modules below Deterministic Safety Analysis address the training needed in performance of such analysis including use of codes. Similarly, the modules under the PSA Element introduce PSA model building and use of PSA codes.  Modules under the sixth EK module address the application and use of knowledge and skills developed in all other modules especially for design safety and regulatory reviews and in integrated risk informed decision making.
 
Essential Safety Assessment Knowledge
 
 
I. Fundamentals of Safety Assessment
II. Assessment of Engineering Aspects Important To Safety
III. Deterministic Safety Analyses
IV. Probabilistic Safety Analyses
V.
Safety Assessment Applications
 
 
 
Design Basis Analysis
Level I PSA
Design Safety Reviews
Practical Application Skills
 
 
Beyond Design Basis Analysis
Level 2 PSA
Regulatory Reviews
 
 
 
 
Level 3 PSA
Periodic Safety Reviews
 
 
 
 
 
IRDM
 
Depending on needs of organizations and student qualifications a training curriculum can be built efficiently using the SAET Syllabus. The training content, the skills and knowledge requirements that are presented in this document for all modules are also modularly designed for maximum flexibility and tailoring of training programmes to actual needs.
In development of the SAET Syllabus the IAEA has cooperated with academia, industry and technical support organizations to assure that the technical content and the background information necessary for performance of safety analyses are properly identified to support needs of the Member States. It is expected that this Syllabus will be reviewed and revised on a regular basis to assure that it corresponds to the needs and to technical as well as regulatory developments.