To ensure that:
- Quality Assurance (QA) is; valid, authentic, reliable, current and enough; covers all staff and programmes.
- QA Strategy is; open, fair, free from bias and fit for purpose.
- There is accurate and detailed recording of QA decisions in line with Awarding Organisations, End Point Assessments, ESFA and Ofsted
In order to achieve this NA College will:
- Ensure that all NA College assessment methods are verified as fit for purpose.
- Quality Assurers to appropriately design and structure a sampling plan for all individual programmes, sites and teams. The ensure NA College conforms to Awarding Organisations, End Point Assessment Organisations, ESFA and OFSTED requirements.
- Plan, implement & review individual schedules, linked to schemes of work, assessment plans and milestones.
- Define, maintain and support effective quality assurance roles.
- Ensure that identified staff will maintain secure records of all quality assurance activity
- Advise and train staff of the requirements for the current quality procedures and quality assurance procedures.
- Provide standardised Quality Assurance documentation
- Use the outcome of Quality Assurance to enhance future assessment practice through standardization events.
- Undertake annual OTLA to Education and NA College OTLA Policy.
- Implementation & operation of provision RAG system
3. Quality Assurance
The Quality Assurer should have a good understanding of the relevant awarding body assessment requirements and have subject knowledge/sector competence of the programme being quality assured. The Quality Assurer must also know and understand the End Point Assessment Organisation and requirements.
The Quality Assurer should undertake the following tasks throughout the duration of the course:
- Monitor that the Quality Assurance schedule covers all units and End Point Assessment for all programmes and is fit for purpose.
- Advise on the interpretation of QCF frameworks, RQF standards and EPA requirements.
- Support & liaise with End Point Assessment organisations.
- Co-ordinate assessment arrangements (QCF), including multi-site and consortia if appropriate.
- Quality Assurance all schemes of work & assignment briefs and assessment schedules before issuing to learners.
- Approve assignment resources.
- Approve simulation activities.
- Quality Assurance & assessor standardisation.
- Ensure an effective process of recording learner progress and achievement is in place.
- Advise on opportunities for evidence generation and collection.
- Formative & summative sampling strategy.
- Support End Point Assessment.
- Keep records of the Quality Assurance process for three years after certification, or the period specified by the awarding body if longer.
- Liaise with external quality assurers on EQA activities & Direct Claims Status.
- Undertake scheduled IQA & assessor standardisation events.
- Advise on the appropriateness of assessment evidence with regard to; validity, authenticity, reliability, being current and sufficient.
- Use subject specialism to sample assessed work to quality assurance assessors’ judgements.
- Check the quality of assessment to ensure that it is consistent, fair and reliable.
- Ensure own assessment decisions are quality assured by another person.
- Give feedback to assessors and identify action to be taken where appropriate.
- Provide advice and support to assessors on a regular basis.
- Standardisation events.
- Support QA process
- QA & assessor CPD development
- Ensure appropriate corrective action is taken when assignment brief process is not fit for purpose or when assessment decisions are not accurate.
- Take part in the informal stages of any appeal.
- Advise programme team on any training needs.
- Provide feedback on aspects of the assessment system to the programme team, senior management or Awarding Organisation.
- Provide feedback on EQA visits
- Standardisation of assessment must take place by all assessors engaged in delivery and assessment of an assignment or unit.
- Standardisation events can be used to develop the quality and consistency of assessment across assessors involved in all programmes.
- Support QA policy & QA strategy
4. The Quality Assurance Process (Delivery)
The assessors and quality assurers for each provision will be recorded as part of the Quality Assurance strategy, sampling plans will be produced for each provision and managed as a live document.
All NA College devised assignment briefs must be Quality Assured before they are issued to learners. The objectives of this stage of verification is to ensure:
- The tasks and evidence will allow the learner to address the targeted criteria;
- It is written in clear and accessible language;
- Learners’ roles and tasks are appropriate to the level of qualification;
- Equal opportunities are incorporated.
The outcome of quality assurance on the brief will be recorded on the assessment plan, if an action has been identified, the assessor will amend the brief and return it to the quality assurer to sign off. This form will be signed and dated for external quality audit purposes. Once the assignment is quality assured as fit for purpose, it can be issued to learners.
A sample of assessed work from every unit and every assignment must be quality assured to check the accuracy of assessment. (IQA sampling plan)
Internal verification of assessed work must be recorded. If action is required, the assessor will complete action, sign the form and return it to the quality assurer for sign-off.
Quality Assurance of assessment decisions must not be end-loaded – i.e.: it should be a continuous process throughout the year. It is important that it is undertaken as soon as possible after assessment as this will improve the quality of assessment and not disadvantage learners.
The following sampling strategy has been adopted, supported by the RAG rating of provision, OTLA grading and Assessor Assessment of Support Rating (ASR).
Level of Support
Suggested Support Measures:
- 10% sampling, including one benchmarking unit
- 1x observation of practice per year
- 1x learner interview per year
- 20% sampling, including one benchmarking unit
- 2x observations of practice per year
- 2x learner interviews per year
- Min 40% sampling, including one benchmarking unit
- 3x observations of practice per year
- 3x learner interviews per year
5. The Quality Assurance Sampling Strategy
During the programme every assessor, every unit and workplace from every assignment should be sampled. (Sampling Strategy)
The sampling plan should be constructed in a way that ensures that it checks the entire assessment process rigorously.
The sampling plan should take the following into account:
- Framework and Standard requirements
- The full range of assessment decisions made work meeting distinction criteria, merit criteria, pass criteria. Evidence must be robust, and a range of assessment methods sampled across all units and outcomes.
- The experience of the assessor; new or inexperienced assessors should have more work internally verified than an experienced assessor. OTLA & RAG rating of provision should be considered.
- When a new unit or new programme is introduced, the sample should be increased.
- Assignment briefs & 360 reviews will be examined for RQF delivery.
- Issues identified at previous external verification or Centre Risk assessment may also affect sample size.
6. Good Practice
Quality Assurance can be undertaken in several ways, but most awarding bodies recognise the following as examples of good practice:
- There is a recognised team of quality assurers, who meet regularly to ensure standardisation of procedures.
- There is a Quality Assurance Policy which promotes a rigorous commitment to quality improvement.
- Quality Assurance processes are agreed and published so that they are clearly understood by all members of delivery teams.
- Quality Assurance forms are standardised across NA College.
- Quality Assurance schedules are drawn up to ensure timely implementation.
- All assessors contribute towards the quality assurance process.
- A lead Quality Assurer is identified, manages the process and provides support to the quality team.
- Standardisation events are pivotal staff development.
- The time required to carry out quality assurance is recognised.
- CPD is maintained and reviewed.