|Guide Book for TVE Teacher Education Curriculum Development and Adaptation (NITE - UNESCO, 1996, 32 p.)|
|SECTION C - STEPS FOR CURRICULUM DEVELOPMENT|
In a teaching learning situation, assessment is the process of determining and verifying that changes have taken place in the behaviour of the learner as an outcome of the training programme. In competency based curriculum this includes determining that the learners can demonstrate the competencies identified through the job analysis.
In order to carry out assessment in the appropriate manner it is also necessary to understand the broad objectives of conducting both assessment for the purpose of giving feedback to learners and for verifying that competencies are achieved to:
¨ recognise any difficulties the learner may be experiencing with the learning process
¨ assist the teacher to decide the most appropriate learning methods for the learner
¨ assist the teacher to recognise any ambiguities in the curriculum and make adjustments accordingly
¨ assist the teacher with the evaluation of the effectiveness of instructional methods
¨ certify the changes that have taken place in the behaviour of the learner and the achievement of the competencies.
Assessment must be appropriate to the competencies or tasks. Psychomotor skills should be assessed on the basis of the learners' practical performance of workplace-related tasks and the cognitive domain through written and/or oral examination. The affective domain can be assessed through observations using an appropriately designed rating scale or other suitable instrument.
Each learning outcome can be assessed separately or two or more learning outcomes can be integrated to involve the learner in one task. Effort should be made to assess each and every learning outcome. Assessment should be continuous and comprehensive, with due consideration given to the learners' ability to perform the identified tasks. Persons involved in delivering on-the-job training should be involved in the assessment of relevant outcomes.
While planning assessment, due consideration should be given to the level of both practical and theoretical components and the appropriateness or validity of test items, questions and any other assessment instruments.
In order to prepare a balanced assessment plan it is advisable to prepare a table of assessment specifications. This indicates how each learning outcome is to be assessed and specifies the assessment tools to be prepared.
The assessment approach for the course should be described with a clear indication of the how the participants, trainers and assessors will be involved in the overall process.
For assessment to be valid at the course level, the developer should be able to describe how the assessment approach allows for an effective judgement of participants' achievement of the course outcomes. For example, the course outcome may be that a successful participant is able to perform a particular role in the workplace. So, design the course structure and assessment approach so that evidence can be collected to permit judgement of achievement of this outcome with relevant aspects assessed on-or off-job.
Assessment is more reliable if assessment practices are monitored and reviewed to ensure there is consistency in the interpretation of evidence. Assessors should also have the expertise to conduct assessments. In some instances industrial and regulatory bodies may make strong recommendations about these matters.
A flexible assessment approach will provide opportunities for participants to negotiate the assessment of their competencies. The course design and assessment approach should facilitate opportunities for recognition of prior learning and progression through the course.
Use of an assessment approach that ensures all participants are treated fairly is recommended. An assessment approach is fair if it does not disadvantage particular learners unjustly. Scrutinise the assessment approach for any bias that will directly or indirectly limit or impede access, by either individuals or groups. Examples of discrimination include an assessment approach which requires participants to draw on competencies beyond those to be developed in the course, or one which is structured in such a way that opportunities to undertake assessment are unnecessarily restrictive or unavailable.
Checklist for 'Assessment Planning'
When developing the plan for assessment, the developer should be able to identify:
¨ an assessment approach which validly assesses participant achievement of course outcomes;
¨ a practice to monitor and review the assessment approach and requirements for assessors;
¨ ways in which opportunities for negotiated assessment including recognition of prior learning are facilitated by the assessment approach;
¨ an assessment approach which is accessible to participants.