Level 4 Award in the internal quality assurance of assessment processes and practice (QCF)

Course Overview

This course overview is important to read before you start your course as it explains how to complete your course and submit assignments.

Your tutor is there for any questions that you may have, so do ask if you are unsure of anything.

Level 4 Award in the internal quality assurance of assessment processes and practice (QCF)

This Award consists of two units: Understanding the principles and practices of internally assuring the quality of assessment and Internally assure the quality of assessment.

It is for those who conduct internal quality assurance of the assessment process from within a centre or organisation. This will include sample planning, monitoring assessors and their decisions, advising and supporting assessors, talking to learners and witnesses, checking and maintaining records.

The units in this course form part of the Training, Assessment and Quality Assurance (TAQA) suite of qualifications for England, Wales and Northern Ireland; separate standards are available in Scotland.

The qualification is made up of a combination of units according to IQA job roles. There is a knowledge unit which can be taken whether you are performing the job role or not, and then a performance unit depending upon the specific requirements of your job role.

Each unit consists of learning outcomes and assessment criteria at level 4. Learning outcomes are what the learner will do, assessment criteria are what the learner can do. The units can be achieved in any order but it is advisable in this course to complete unit 1 and then move onto unit 2.

Course Material

On the learning platform you will find all your course material. This includes the following:

  • Course Manual – this is your manual to work from throughout your course. Your assignments are also within the course manual.
  • Learning Outcome and Assignment Guidance – this will enable you to see the learning outcomes you will achieve by completing the units within this course.
  • Course Videos – excellent tool for visuals learners.
  • Supplementary Resources – this section is full of useful templates, hand-outs and information created to support your learning and the start of your career as an IQA.
  • Referencing Guide – this will help you to reference others’ work in your assignments.

Achieving the units

Learners must achieve 12 credits from the two units (6 in each unit) The Guided Learning hours (GLH) for this course is 90.

Unit 1 will be assessed by assignment, professional discussion and/or oral and written questions (Assignments 1-6) Unit 2 will be assessed by observation of your performance, professional discussion and/or oral and written questions, along with a review of products and evidence of your work (Assignments 7-10)

You will need to complete various quality assurance activities with your assessors to demonstrate your skills, knowledge and understanding. This is to meet all the learning outcomes and assessment criteria of the units you are working towards.

You will need to identify who and what you will internally quality assure for the performance units, and keep all records relating to the IQA activities you undertake. You will need to have your decisions countersigned by another qualified IQA in the same subject area as yourself.

You will be formally assessed and will receive feedback from your tutor regarding your progress.

Internal quality assurance cycle

Depending upon the subject to be quality assured, an IQA cycle will usually be followed. This relates to the monitoring of the teaching, learning and assessment process. The results and findings from all monitoring activities should be discussed with relevant staff, and improvements planned and carried out as necessary.

The IQA cycle during this course may involve the following aspects:

  • Identify the product or service – ascertain what is to be taught, assessed and internally quality assured and why. For example, are learners working towards a qualification or a programme of learning, or are staff being observed performing their job roles? The criteria will need to be clear, i.e. units from a qualification (product) or the support the learner receives (service). Learners should be allocated to assessors in a fair way, perhaps according to their location or workload.
  • Planning – you may need to devise a sample plan to arrange what will be monitored, from whom and when. Plan the dates to observe trainer and assessor performance, hold team meetings and standardisation activities. Information will need to be obtained from assessors to assist the planning process, and risks taken into account such as assessor knowledge, qualifications and experience.
  • Activity – you will need to carry out the IQA activities such as sampling learners’ work, talking to learners, staff, supervisors and witnesses, observing trainer and assessor performance, sampling assessment records and decisions and preparing for EQA visit. Activities also include holding meetings and standardisation events, supporting and training relevant staff and communicating with others involved in the assessment and IQA process.
  • Decision and feedback – you will need to make a judgement as to whether the trainer or assessor has performed satisfactorily and made valid and reliable decisions. Provide developmental feedback as to what was good or what could be improved. Agree action points if necessary and follow them up.
  • Evaluation – carry out a review of the assessment and IQA process to determine what could be improved or done differently. Agree action plans if necessary; implement and follow up. Follow any action plans from external quality assurers or inspectors. Write self-assessment reports as necessary to link in with the quality cycle.

Throughout the cycle, standardisation of practice between assessors, and internal quality assurers should take place; this will help ensure the consistency and fairness of all decisions. Feedback should also be obtained from learners and others involved in the assessment process. Records must be maintained of all activities for audit requirements.




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