3.1 Analyse theories, principles and models of assessment

Effective initial assessment is crucial to provide all learners and providers with a starting point, but this is not a single, isolated event, it should be a process.   Initial assessment needs to take place over a period of time to establish that the qualification is achievable, suitable and appropriate, taking into consideration previous qualifications, experience, style of learning, ability and specific requirements or needs. Initial assessment identifies and confirms the required English, maths and ICT levels.   Diagnostic assessment is designed to provide a detailed assessment of the learner’s skills and abilities against the requirements set out in the National Occupational Standards.   It identifies learner’s areas of weakness, strengths and any additional / specific support required over a period of time, and is used to help the tutor ascertain the correct qualification level and to inform the individual learning plan.   These activities need to be individualised to meet the needs and requirements of each learner. There are many different methods of gathering this information including on-line assessment BKSB, handwritten, interview and discussion activities.

According to Ofsted (2014), “Initial assessment is about knowing your learners in order to be able to support them appropriately. It does not just 'happen' but must be planned and carried out in such a way that learners and provider staff (as well as guardians and employers) can see what the benefits are”.   It is therefore essential to include fully the learner in the initial assessment process, ensuring their individual needs are taken to consideration at the earliest opportunity.
Within my work based learning organisation, learners are working towards Apprenticeships, QCF / NVQ’s, Functional Skills and BTEC qualifications and the Standardised national assessments are specific to their particular qualification.  

The standards for each...