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PTLLS Unit 012 Principles of Assessment in Lifelong Learning Essay

Produce 1 Written Rationale of 1000 words for all areas of research in 1 to 3. 1.1 Analyse how types of assessment are used in lifelong learning: “Assessments should be a regular process; it might not always be formalised, but you should be observing what your learners are doing, asking questions and reviewing their progress throughout their time with you”. Gravells A. Page 113.

Assessments are used to track not only learner but tutor progress. Below I have documented some utilised in my everyday teaching life:

Initial Assessment
Undertaken prior to a lesson or course is delivered and helps direct my session planning to meet learner’s expectations. Ideally this identifies prior knowledge, individual learner’s current levels and any special requirements. Undertaken using a combination of the following:

* Observations
* One-to-one evaluation ‘Is the learner is on the right course’ ‘Will they successfully complete all requirements to pass this course’. * Competency tests (Functional Skills). Is there is any weakness? Additional modules to aid the learner.

Formative Assessment
An on-going process taking place during sessions taking the form of: * Quizzes and puzzles. Helps ascertain knowledge absorption. * Verbal question and answers. Helps see if the learners comprehend the topic. * Journals. To help the record feelings, what went right and what can be improved on. This helps me assess teaching to the correct level or beneficial I adjustments to my plan and methods. * Observations. I can walk around the room and observe the learner’s work. Summative Assessments

Carried out at the end of a course to measure how much has been retained
usually through: * End of course formal tests or exams. To see what they have learnt. * Portfolio: This is a collect ion of the learners work throughout the course.

1.2 Analyse how assessment methods are used in lifelong learning: To identify what prior knowledge a learner has, I would create a self-assessment questionnaire that requires specific answers, (tick boxes). I would then build this into my session plans.

Diaries or Learning Journals are used to document on-going learning from each session. Progress is measured and any gaps in teaching or learning addressed.

Simulation is used to see if learners are able to understand instructions and reproduction of what they have seen or heard in everyday life situations.

Assignments evaluate how well learners are able to research particular subjects then put their findings into words.

Discussions are a good vehicle for assessment and understanding when other methods may be difficult to manage.

Peer feedback where fellow learners give their comments and ask questions for clarity.

1.3 Evaluate strengths and limitations of assessments methods to meet individual leaner needs:
Quizzes and puzzles can be used informally to assess if learning is taking place. However if the purpose is to measure individual learning the questions need to be varied. The most effective way is to have the assessment computer generated though this is not always possible if the correct software or facility is not available.

Diaries aid literacy and language skills. The learner would also be able to reflect back on what they have learnt; building their confidence to
self-assess. In order for this to work, there needs to be clear aims and objectives.

A portfolio is a formal way to gather evidence produced over a period of time covering all topics taught. This needs to be checked for things such as plagiarism and if information used is current and correctly referenced.

Role play is another assessment method. The learners are given a scenario from their lesson which they have the opportunity to act out linking theory to practice. There needs to be clear explanation given, this can be time consuming and not all learners may feel comfortable playing roles.

Examinations can assess what learners have retained by just recalling information. The down side of this is that learners may have only been taught what is needed to pass the exam and not retain any of the other theories they may need at a later stage.

2.1 Evaluate how to involve learners in the assessment process: As a tutor I will carry out various methods of assessment to maintain continuous improvement; I also involve my learners in the process.

By giving my learners clear guide lines they undertake peer to peer assessments, where they give verbal feedback to each other. This stimulates focus on the subject being taught; encourages communication skills and the discovery of common ground. Sometimes comments coming from a peer can be better received than from the tutor.

Checking their own work and progress through self-assessment is useful as this gives learners an opportunity to step back and reflect on their objectives and whether they’ve attained them.

I also conduct one to one tutorials in an informal manner where we discuss objectives, progress and development. This demonstrates positive and individual inclusion. As stated by Wilson L. (2009). page112 “Assessment is a term given to checking that learning has occurred. It may happen at any
stage during the learner’s progress through their qualification”. Assessments are also a tool to motivate and boost the confidence of learners.

2.2 Analyse the role of peer and self –assessment in the assessment process: Peer assessments are a good means of confirming and sharing ideas. During teaching sessions I am able to describe my observations and justify how I reached conclusions. My peers may agree or get me to look at what I’ve expressed in a different way thus through discussion we come to a consensus.

Looking at peer assessment on my micro-teach session. I was pleased with the feedback. It clearly showed what I am confident in; what I need to improve on and what I should consider for future delivery. Their feedback was encouraging and it has confirms I have made the correct decision career-wise. I found putting into practice what I already know with what I have learnt over the past few weeks very useful. There were some challenges I had when creating my own micro-teach session, this is all part of the learning process for me. Both during but predominately as session come to an end I to do a mental self- assessment leading to putting down my own thoughts on paper to aid improvement going forward.

3.1 Explain the need to keep records of assessment learning: Assessments should be documented create evidence of learning, how it is evaluated and progress made. Records also serve for the purpose of verification for audits, for quality assurance and for regulatory bodies.

* Assessment tracking can be used to show development and learners requirements being met. * Feedback and action records are used to show that a learner has had feedback, what was agreed and when it is carried out. * Learning styles results will aid with inclusiveness when reviewing or creating session plans. * Enrolment forms to confirm the learner’s details, emergency contact, whether they are permitted to study and what the learner signed up for.

3.2 Summarise requirements for keeping records in an organisation: All government, legal and organisational guidelines should be followed and
regularly audited. Confidentiality must be maintained at all times by any persons holding/using personal data in line with the ‘Data Protection’ and ‘Freedom of Information’ Acts. Records should be accurate, legible and current with specific rules regarding storage, access and removal of obsolete information.

All methods should be to an agreed standard irrespective of who, whom and how undertaken. WORDCOUNT: 1089
Bibliography
Gravells A. (2012) Preparing to Teach in the Lifelong Learning Sector 5th Edition, London: Learning Matters

Wilson L. (2009) Practical Teaching A Guide to PTLLS & DTLLS. Cengage Learning EMEA


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