1: Understanding the principles and practices of assessment
1.1 Explain the functions of assessment in learning and development Assessment is used to make a specific educational decision and is the process of evaluating the extent to which participants in education have developed their knowledge, understanding and skills. Assessment, both formative and summative, plays a significant part in the learning experience as it determines progression and enables learners to demonstrate that they have achieved their desired learning outcomes. Formative assessment, or assessment for learning as it is often called, is the assessment that takes place throughout a course or programme of study and is usually carried out by teachers during teaching and training. It provides feedback to both the learner and the teacher on how things are going and how learning can be improved. In contrast summative assessment is assessment of learning and is often used to determine what’s been learnt or achieved in terms of acquired skills, knowledge and understanding at or towards the end of a course or programme of study. Further functions of assessment in learning and development are the measurement and recording of achievement, the identification of individual learners’ needs, that the assessment reflects the required standards and performance/assessment criteria and are fit for the purpose intended and that they contribute to quality assurance and the development of best practice. 1.2 Define key concepts and principles of assessment
Validity = does the assessed task actually assess what it is required to? Validity ensures that assessment tasks and associated criteria effectively measure learner achievement of the intended learning outcomes at the appropriate level. Reliable and consistent = there is a need for assessment to be reliable and this requires clear and consistent processes for the setting, marking, grading and moderation of assignments. In order for assessment to be reliable and consistent the same decision or judgement regarding a piece of work must be made regardless of who the decision maker is. Explicitness in terms of learning outcomes and assessment criteria is vitally important in achieving reliability and consistency and should be shared with both learner and assessor prior to learning. Explicit, accessible and transparent = clear, accurate, consistent and timely information on assessment tasks and procedures should be made available to students, staff and other external assessors or examiners. Inclusive and equitable = as far as is possible without compromising academic standards, inclusive and equitable assessment should ensure that tasks and procedures do not disadvantage any group or individual. Integral to programme design = assessment task should primarily reflect the nature of the discipline or subject but should also ensure that students have the opportunity to develop a range of generic skills and capabilities. Manageable = the scheduling of assignments and the amount of assessed work required should provide a reliable and valid profile of achievement without overloading staff or students. Includes formative and summative = formative and summative assessment should be incorporated in to programmes to ensure that the purposes of assessment are adequately addressed. Many programmes may also with to include initial and/or diagnostic assessments. Timely feedback = students are entitled to feedback on submitted formative assessment tasks, and on summative tasks, where appropriate. The nature, extent and timing of feedback for each assessment task should be made clear to students in advance. Staff development and strategy = all those involved in the assessment of students must be competent to undertake their roles and responsibilities. 1.3 Explain the responsibilities of the assessor
The responsibilities of...