Assessing and Assuring the Quality of Assessment

Assessing and Assuring the Quality of Assessment
Knowledge and Understanding for Unit 1
Understanding the Principles and Practice of Assessment

The aim of this unit is to assess the candidate assessors knowledge and understanding of the principles and practices that underpin assessment.
All learning outcomes in this unit must be assessed using methods appropriate to the assessment of knowledge and understanding.
There must be valid, authentic and sufficient evidence for all the assessment criteria.
However, one piece of evidence may be used to meet the requirements of more than one learning outcome.
Please complete the following questions.

Learning Outcome
To understand the principles and requirements of assessment.
1.1 Explain the functions of assessment in learning and development.
Assessment can take part at different stages in learning and development and can often be overlooked. If you have delivered training and you dont assess, how can you be sure the learner has learned anything. There are a number of reasons why you should assess: determining level of knowledge, ensuring that learning has taken place, checking progress to name but a few. Providing summaries for the learners means they can be confident that the learner has the required information about the subject or task. Initial assessment should take place before the course to make sure the leaner is ok to be on the course. Formative assessments are a continuous process used to provide feedback to the learner whereas summative assessment provides a description of learners level of knowledge on completion of an activity or task.
1.2 Define the key concepts and principles of assessment.
Reliability: If an assessment was totally reliable assessors acting independently using the same criteria should come to the same outcome when marking a piece of work, in the interests of quality, fairness and assurance. when it comes to summative assessment its a goal worth aiming for.
Validity: This is just as important as reliability is the question of validity. Does the assessed task actually assess what you want it to. There is an argument that all too often in higher education we assess the things which are easy to assess, which tend to be basic factual knowledge and comprehension rather than the higher order of objectives of analysis, synthesis and evaluation.
1.3 Explain the responsibilities of the assessor
The role of the assessor is to assess the learners performance in a range of tasks. They will ensure that the competence or knowledge demonstrated meets the required standard which is why it is important the assessor has experience in the area of work being assessed.. The assessor will plan assessments with each learner and ensure they are fully aware of their responsibility in collection and presentation of evidence. The assessor will observe the candidate in the work place or environment that reflects the true job. The assessor may ask questions in order to confirm knowledge and understanding. The assessor will give accurate and constructive feedback and keep records of the learners achievements.

1.4 Identify the regulations and requirements relevant to assessment in own area of practice
1. Health & Safety
2. DVLA as per driving licences
3. VOSA as per vehicle regulations drivers hours / working time
4. Police as per traffic law drivers hours / working time

Learning Outcome
To understand different types of assessment
2.1 Compare the strengths and limitations of a range of assessment methods with reference to the needs of individual learners
Method Advantage Disadvantage
Observation 1. Shows the learner can perform the task
2. Easy collectable evidence of competence across a wide range of routine work activities
3. Very suitable for a leaner who would find it difficult to produce written evidence
1. No real disadvantage as the learner is actually demonstrating they know the subject
Professional discussion 1. Provides a holistic approach to assessing knowledge and understanding
2. Useful in determining not only what the learner knows but how they perform
1. Learner may not like taking on tape or in an interview scenario
Questions & Answers 1. Tests the learners knowledge of facts and procedures
2. Checks if a learner understands principles and theories
3. Collects information on the type and purpose of the processes a learner has gone through
1. Learner may struggle with answering the question
2. May require lots of encouragement and leading

Learning Outcome
Understand how to plan assessment
3.1 Summarise key factors to consider when planning assessment
1. Plan: Plan the content of the lesson
2. Implement: Put the content in to practice
3. Assessment: Assess if any changes are required
4. Revise: Make changes to the plan / lesson if required and put in to practice

3.2 Evaluate the benefits of using a holistic approach to assessment
Holistic assessment reverses the planning practice of looking first at a unit or an element and then identifying activities for the candidate that will evidence the requirements. Instead the assessor and candidate will look at an practical event and plan for evidencing a number of units or elements from this one event.
On the other hand, holistic assessment could be hidden sloppy assessment practices and inadequate evidencing. In fact, the reverse is true, in that holistic assessment can perhaps be described as advanced assessment practice. Holistic assessment can be more efficient and effective for candidates. It avoids repetition of evidence and should help towards speedier completion of awards.

3.3 Explain how to plan a holistic approach to assessment
1. Give learner a questionnaire to ascertain their past experience and concerns
2. Assessor to discuss with the learner their concerns in order to ascertain what action should be taken
3. The assessor agrees with the learner what the main concerns are and then develops an action plan to fulfil the learners needs.

3.4 Summarise the types of risks that may be involved in assessment in own area of responsibility
1. Health & Safety Injuries caused by improper practices when loading / unloading vehicle.
2. Learners not wearing full PPE in specified areas of work place.
3. Accidents whilst driving due to improper practices

3.5 Explain how to minimise risks through the planning process
1. Be prepared make sure every learner has required PPE
2. Ensure all learners are aware of Health & Safety practice and know who to contact if required
3. Make sure vehicles are roadworthy and legal
4. Be aware of the activity you are to conduct and make sure a risk assessment has taken place.

Learning Outcomes
Understand how to involve learners and others in assessment
4.1 Explain the importance of involving the learner and others in the assessment process
Assessment is all about making judgements. A major argument for involving students in self and peer-assessment is that it helps them to develop the ability to make judgements, in particular about themselves and their work. This is an important life skill as well as an academic one.

4.2 Summarise types of information that should be made available to learners and others involved in the assessment process
1. Students should be made aware of the criteria in which they will be assessed
2. How long the assessment should take and in what form
3. what the outcome will be
4. what qualification is expected

4.3 Explain how peer and self assessment can be used effectively to promote involvement and personal responsibility in the assessment of learning
Peer Assessment: There are many benefits of peer assessment (students assessing each others learning). It can help students to feel supported by their peers and they may be able to relate more easily with peers than with a trainer. It helps students gain confidence and social skills and share the roles of assessing and being assessed equally. One suggested peer assessment activity is to have students work in groups, discussing each others in-class assignments and ways to improve or change them.

Self Assessment: Self-assessment grows out of peer assessment, so that eventually students are able to examine their own work and discover strengths and weaknesses for themselves. Its important to incorporate some aspect of self-assessment every day, if possible, in order for students to take responsibility and interest in their abilities. One suggested activity is called “traffic lights;” the student looks at his assignment and marks green for questions that he feels confident about, yellow for questions that hes unsure of and red for questions that will require help.

4.4 Explain how assessment arrangements can be adapted to meet the needs of individual learners
Generally speaking, the most useful way of adapting assessment for learners is to give all learners the element of choice rather than offering an alternative to the learner. In doing this, the choice can be made without necessarily forcing the learner to disclose their lack of understanding or forcing adjustment. An example would be giving all learners the choice of having a Unit assessed either by portfolio or by written examination or by observation. In short, as long as the assessment criteria are being assessed to the same standard, the assessment method can be flexible.

Learning Outcomes
Understand how to make assessment decisions
5.1 Explain how to judge whether evidence is: sufficient, authentic and current
Sufficient: Evidence must cover all aspects of the assessment criteria for each unit you are seeking to achieve. Sufficient does not mean a mass of evidence. It simply means collecting enough evidence to demonstrate competence.

Authentic: You must be able to explain and substantiate the evidence you put forward. It is important, therefore, to ensure you only submit evidence relating to your own performance.

Current: Current??™ means evidence relating to skills, attitudes and knowledge you can currently demonstrate.

5.2 Explain how to ensure that assessment decisions are: made against specified criteria, valid, reliable and fair
The assessor should follow as far as possible the criteria set down in the relevant unit and qualification. All corresponding evidence from the learner should be reliable in that they have concrete knowledge and skill to back up their evidence. The evidence should be fair in that any leaner will have the same opportunity to complete the assignment.

Learning Outcomes
Understand quality assurance of the assessment process
6.1 Evaluate the importance of quality assurance in the assessment process
Quality assurance is a system companies use to review products, and the production system, to ensure consistent, quality results. A quality assurance system can help identify weaknesses and inconsistencies in the service or production method.

6.2 Summarise quality assurance and standardisation in own area of practice
By ensuring the quality assurance within my field will allow for more effective assessments allowing all assessors to work in line with course polices and complying with industry qualifications. Standardising with the field will allow for up dating policy and procedures quickly and effectively.

6.3 Summarise the procedure to follow when there are disputes concerning assessment in own area
If a dispute where to happen in my field then I would first try and rectify the problem myself, if this is not possible then my next course of action would be to involve the senior training advisor

Learning Outcomes
Understand how to manage information relating to assessment
7.1 Explain the importance of following procedure for the management of information relating to assessment
It is most important to follow all standards, procedures and polices in order to have a structured path in which to follow. This allows for the smooth operation and any assessment and aids the effective management of learner files.

7.2 Explain how feedback and questioning contribute to the assessment process
Feedback and effective questioning contributes to the whole assessment process in that it allows both the learner and assessor to gauge the progress of the learner. It will also provide evidence of any skills shortage that require enhancing.

Learning Outcomes
Understand the legal and good practise requirements in relation to assessment
8.1 Explain the legal issues, policies and procedures relevant to assessment, including those for confidentiality, health and welfare
As part of the government??™s scheme in raising and maintaining national standards for recognised qualifications it is of importance to maintain certain records. Training Organisations are subject to inspection by OFSTED so have to keep records for performance, safety and financial reasons.
??? Registers-attendance at lessons
??? Visit Report Forms-proof you are visiting candidates
??? Course assessment sheets-record of tests and progress
??? Course feedback forms-feedback from candidates
??? Health and Safety Check Forms-Ensuring safe working environment
??? Equality and Diversity Forms-Ensuring no discrimination
??? Individual Learning Plans-Targets and timescales

8.2 Explain the contribution that technology can make to the assessment process
Technology can support nearly every aspect of assessment in one way or another, from the administration of individual tests and assignments to the management of assessment; from automatically marked on-screen tests to tools to support human marking and feedback. Clearly, though, for technology-enhanced assessment to be effective, pedagogically sound developments need to be supported by robust and appropriate technology, within a supportive institutional or departmental context.

8.3 Evaluate requirements for equality and diversity and; where appropriate, bilingualism in relation to assessment
Equality is about ???creating a fairer society, where everyone can participate and has the opportunity to fulfil their potential??™
Diversity literally means difference. When it is used as a contrast or addition to equality, it is about recognising individual as well as group differences, treating people as individuals, and placing positive value on diversity in the community and in the workforce.

Equality and diversity is becoming more important in all aspects of our lives and work for a number of reasons:We live in an increasingly diverse society and need to be able to respond appropriately and sensitively to this diversity. Learners will reflect this diversity around gender, race and ethnicity, disability, religion, sexuality, class and age.

Organisations believe that successful implementation of equality and diversity in all aspects of work ensures that colleagues, staff and students are valued, motivated and treated fairly.

We have an equality and human rights legal framework covering employment practices and service delivery and need to ensure we work within this and avoid discrimination.

8.4 Evaluate value of reflective practise and continuing professional development in the assessment process
Reflective practice is a process which enables you to achieve a better understanding of yourself, your skills, competencies, knowledge and professional practice. Although most of us engage in thinking about experiences either before, during or after an event, we need to document our understanding in order to clearly identify and demonstrate the components of our learning. Identifying what we have learnt requires us to think about our experiences, and consider the outcomes, in order to evaluate the experience, and identify our thoughts, feelings and understanding of the relevant issues. The objective is to identify what we have learnt in order to construct new or different approaches to our future practice, or to recognise and validate effective practice to utilise in the future.