Health & Safety
This is our fourth blog on what makes a good trainer by considering the process of Course Assessments.
During Training it is very important to assess how the learners are progressing in the following ways:
An initial Course Assessment
The first Course Assessment will consist of an Inital Assessment. This takes place before or at the beginning of a course. This assessment is about finding out as much information about the learners. At the start of a course a teacher could ask if the learners have any knowledge of the subject. If they do, what did they learn and when. This can involve working in pairs as an icebreaker. Delegates are finding out what each other knows about the subject, if any, and feeding back to the whole group.
By doing an initial assessment this way can also help with motivation and look at skill mix. During an initial assessment you can also find out if any of the learners need extra support. This could be that they have a hearing problem and may need a sign language interpreter. They may have poor eyesight and need to sit at the front of the class to see the presentation. They may be in a wheelchair and need extra space to manoeuvre around the classroom. There may be someone on the course who is dyslexic who needs extra help to achieve their potential. Instead of giving someone with dyslexia reading material, this could be given to them in an audio format.
A Formative Course Assessment
The second course assessment is ongoing throughout the course or learning experience. This type of assessment can be as simple as asking questions and observing the learners during the course to assess how they are progressing. Recapping the course material taught. Observing learners during group or paired work is a good way of identifying learners who are interacting and those that are holding back, giving the teacher an idea of who may need further help. Giving learners a quiz to complete can be interesting and fun and enables the teacher to pick up on areas that may need further development, this could mean an area of the course needs recapping.
A Summative Course Assessment
The third course assessment is the summative assessment which takes place at the end of the course or learning experience. This assessment is about evaluating the learner at the end of the learning process by comparing with a standard or benchmark such as learning outcomes. This can be achieved by the learner doing, for example, a presentation, a micro- teach, multiple choice exam, projects, or an assignment. Some learners are very knowledgeable but when it comes to summative assessments like an exam, they find it very stressful and can fail.
I used to be like this at school, exams made me very anxious, and I had to retake a couple of exams. However, there are some learners who only memorise course material that is needed for a test but do not have the background knowledge of what has been taught. This can be a problem later if they need to put what they have learnt into practice.