The 'nuts and bolts' of assessment practice are now a click away

29 April 2019

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Just over a year on from the launch of A101: Introducing the Principles of Assessment, Cambridge Assessment Network is launching a second online course that covers the practical aspects involved in the assessment cycle: A102: Introducing Assessment Practice.

In its first year, 825 education and assessment professionals in 68 different countries studied on A101, learning about validity, reliability, fairness, standards, comparability and the practicality and manageability of assessment.

Now A102 is here to provide a guide to the design, delivery and implementation of assessments – and how each phase of the assessment cycle interlinks.

Tim Oates CBE, Group Director of Assessment Research and Development said: “A102 provides practical insights into how the different stages of the assessment cycle fit together to create and deliver high quality, trusted assessments. The course is designed to be definitive, accessible and interesting.”

The course content has been developed by assessment experts from across Cambridge Assessment, who also feature in the week-by-week videos.

A102 introduces key stages in the assessment cycle, including:

  • Uses, purposes and types of assessment
  • Designing and developing qualifications
  • Creating assessment materials – including learning outcomes, assessment objectives, mark schemes and assessment grids
  • Standardisation, marking and moderation
  • Setting and maintaining standards
  • The three ‘R’s - Roles, responsibilities and regulators.

A mix of stakeholders from around the world took part in the A102 course pilot, including those working for other exam boards and awarding organisations, teachers, regulatory body staff, ministries, assessors and Cambridge Assessment staff. 

Feedback from the A102 course pilot:

“I gained a broader understanding of how assessments are developed - it helped me see where my work fits in to the overall process/product lifecycle.”

“A must do for everyone working in assessment (especially in exam boards - and possibly examinations officers in schools).”

“It will assist me when discussing assessment with teachers and heads of departments. I understand more about why assessment is developed in the way it is and will be able to have more valuable conversations.”

“My role requires me to work closely with assessments so this has broadened my understanding of the complexities of designing and developing a qualification and the associated syllabuses including managing stakeholder expectations”

“It further embeds my knowledge of the factors involved in the design, development and delivery of qualifications which I use at work on a daily basis.”

“A practical and thought-provoking look at the nuts and bolts of assessment. It definitely relates to day-to-day practice.”

“An introduction to assessment practice; from how questions are set to regulating and maintaining standards. There are reading materials and activities to complete and even a social element with the support of others taking the course with you.”

“A useful, basic guide to how assessments are designed, implemented and marked. This course would be a good foundation for teachers who are curious about how exam boards operate.”

The course is now open for booking for the July and October 2019 sessions.

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