Overview of Assess Competence

Assess Competence
An important component of WSQ system is assessment, as trainers you need to ensure your
learners are eventually deemed to have the right knowledge and skills to be passed as
How competency-based assessment is carried out, first need to know the types of assessment
available to conduct competency-based assessment.
Types of Assessment
Assessment is the process of gathering information about learner’s progress, and using that
information to make judgments for a range of possible purposes.
Assessment may be loosely classified according to the different purposes for which it
is carried out. Some common types (and specific purposes) are listed below.
Do note that one assessment method, or instrument, may be used for more than one
purpose, although this might mean it may not be able to fulfill both purposes
Summative assessment is any assessment that is used to provide a
final grade, which may in turn be used for awarding a qualification,
ranking, progression, certifying achievement or competence with a
Summative view to career advancement, or employee classification.
It usually occurs at the end of a period of learning or practice, and is
sometimes termed “assessment of learning” (Nikton & Brookhart, 2007).
Formative assessment is assessment that is aimed at helping learners
to improve. Sometimes termed “assessment for learning”, its focus is on
identifying strengths and areas for improvements to enhance learning
(Black & William, 1998).
It may be used to diagnose performance and to confirm progress in
learning. In contrast to summative learning, it usually takes place over a
period of time, and requires feedback to be given to the learner, as well
as opportunities for them to put that feedback into action.
Formative assessment is not graded. If it is, it is considered as
continuous assessment.
Continuous assessment is graded assessment carried out over a period
of learning.
These assessments can take the form of projects, daily assignments, and
Continuous practical sessions.
Learners are allowed to demonstrate their skills and knowledge
through a variety of ways over time through planned assessment
Diagnostic assessment is used to determine education and training
Diagnostic This takes place prior to the start of formal training or teaching sessions.
It helps to determine learning gaps and to develop strategies to bridge
those gaps. (Blank, 1982).
Skills recognition is the term used to describe assessment processes
that provide the formal recognition of a person’s current competencies,
be it skills, knowledge and/or attitudes. (Harris et al, 1995).
In applying for recognition of prior learning (RPL), evidence of the
skills and knowledge gained in a previous work, life or training
experience that could be provided to gain recognition include:
practical demonstration
samples of work, diary or journal records
reports - photos or videos of workmanship
written references and/or the names of referees
certificates of attendance or participation in courses/programmes
testimonials or letters of support from previous supervisors or clients
Nitkon, A.J. & Brookhart, S.M. (2007). Educational Assessment of Students. 5th edition.
New Jersey: Pearson.
Harris, R. Gurthrie, H., Hobart, B. & Lundberg, D. (1995) competency-based education
and training: between a rock and a whirlpool. South Yarra, Australia: Macmillan
Blank., W. E. (1982). Handbook for developing competency-based training
programs. Englewoods Cliffs, New Jersey: Prentice-Hall, Inc.
Black, P. & William, D. (1998). Inside the black box: raising standards through
classroom assessment. Phi Delta Kappan, 80(20), 139-148.
Competency-based assessment v Norm-based assessment
Competency-based assessment
Candidates assessed against standard
Candidates’ competence is dependent
on evidence provided
Learner participates and consulted
during assessment process (eg.
questioning after a practical
Example: WSQ
Norm-based assessment
Candidates assessed against the
performance of the whole pool – bell
Candidates chalk up scores, which could
be further subjected to moderation
Usually one-off performance with no
interaction with assessor
Primary School Leaving Examination,
Annual Performance Ranking at work
10 Continuing Education & Training (CET)valuesto reflect on when conducting
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