ENABLING AND ASSESSING LEARNING
The assessment process in a teaching environment is a necessary requirement to enable you to be able to measure a student’s knowledge and understanding. Assessments come in many different forms and use many different methods, each are important in obtaining an outcome to which the tutor can obtain positive outcomes. Gravells (2008) suggests that assessment is a process of determining if learning has taken place. Gravells (2008) adds that assessment enables the assessor to find out if a learner has gained the required skills and knowledge needed at a given point towards a course or qualification. This is important to me as a tutor as I need to be aware of the learner’s progress and if they have retained any of the information / training they have been given. Initial assessment
Lesley Thorn Training Standards Council (2001) states that Assessment should not be something that is done to somebody. The learner must be involved and feel part of the process. As a tutor the initial assessment is essential; this assessment enables you to get to know your learners which will in turn enable you to support them appropriately. For some learners this will be an opportunity to explain any concerns or worries they may have either relating to the course or any personal issues that may affect their ability to learn. The initial assessment should be beneficial to the learners and should help them to feel positive about their capability to learn. As a tutor it is vital that you identify the learner’s needs, this could be numeracy, literacy or any areas of learning that will need to be addressed. At this stage a basic functional skills test is beneficial to enable you to work out what level a learner is at. You must know what the learner requires as this will be used to plan the course and measure the learners development. The initial assessment procedure takes place prior to the course starting and is crucial in the future planning of any learning outcomes. At this stage the learners learning style is also identified, (appendix 1) these could be:- Visual: You are a visual learner- a watcher will probably like to work in an orderly environment and may be distracted by too much clutter or information around you. Auditory: you are an auditory learner- a listener you may like to work in a quiet environment or with music of your own choice. Other people’s noise will distract you, what you like best is listening and talking to other people. Kinesthetic: You are a learner – doer. You like a work environment when you can move about and do things – interactive computer soft wear will be a good way to encourage in learning. Fairly even mix: you have a balanced approach to learning and use a range of different strategies for receiving and retrieving information. This is the best of all worlds and will help you to adapt too many different learning situations. Through discussing the outcomes of these questionnaires with the learner you can find the most suitable learning style for them. Honey and Mumford researched the way people learn and found that if learners where made aware of their learning style their learning would improve. My learners are all aware of their learning styles, I have learnt that if you use a variety of teaching methods the learner will interact more as they are not carrying out the same learning style continually. Assessment
Black and Williams (1998) found that the most effective formative strategies could add the equivalent of up to two grades to a learner’s achievement and the weakest learners benefited most from this. Assessment is a valuable tool for me to be able to assess where the individual learner is and the support needed. Formative assessment
Formative assessment – this form of assessment is ongoing e.g. completing written or practical elements towards a unit, with elements needing assessment before unit...