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Why Is Assessment Carried Out Nursing Essay

Paper Type: Free Essay Subject: Nursing
Wordcount: 2197 words Published: 1st Jan 2015

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Although some questions may appear similar, there are subtle differences that need to be considered if you are sign-posting one answer to another.

Criteria Number

Assessment Criteria


Explain the functions of assessment:

Why is assessment carried out?

What is the purpose of assessment?

What does assessment measure?

What are the anticipated outcomes of assessment?

Assessment is carried out as a way of compiling information about an individual or group to ascertain development needs. It is an integral part of both learning and teaching/coaching and allows the assessor to identify strengths, weaknesses and gaps in learning, enabling them to plan for the next steps in their learning by providing feedback to the individual and agreeing targets.

Assessment may be used for 3 main reasons

Pre-Assessment – To categorize or identify the development stage at which an individual or group is currently performing at. This will provide a benchmark relative to a predetermined criteria and/or standard.

Formative Assessment – Once a baseline measure has been ascertained, an intervention can then be planned for. This allows the assessor to highlight specific areas of the assessment and target the intervention towards the needs of the individual or group. Using this approach enables the assessor to establish clear programme objectives.

Summative Assessment – Evaluating is just as important as the assessment itself. It is a process that can determine the growth and progress of the individual or group. This is why it is important to assess before and after the implementation of any programme as the effectiveness of the programme can be measured according to the difference between the two assessments.

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Continuous or formative assessment, is required not only of the individual and/or group but also of the product of learning, and then compared to the criteria and/or standards set out by the awarding body, (if applicable). This allows for assessment to be integrated into the teaching and learning process and links closely to what we assess, when we assess and why we assess.

Assessment is not the be all and end all of teaching, but rather a process that maps a students’ progress and achievements during a specified timescale. Using the feedback given to them from assessment, the student will have an understanding of their target/s and be able to discuss with the assessor where they currently stand in relation to this target. From here, the student should have a better understanding of how they can achieve the desired outcome..


Define these key concepts and principles of assessment:




Safe and manageable

Suitable to the candidate needs


Fairness in assessment ensures that the individual is given equal opportunities to be successful in reaching their objective.


Reliability in assessment is essential. This would mean for example that if we repeated an assessment on a student, or they were observed by another assessor, then the results should be consistent across the board.


Assessment needs to be valid. What this means is that it assesses what it is supposed to assess.

An example of this would be if I were to assess a student on their ability to coach a sports session. I could get the candidate to write up on how to coach a session, however, this would not allow me to assess whether or not they could physically coach a session and as such the method would prove to be invalid. A correct method would be to actually watch them coach a session

Safe and Manageable

Planning in depth and complicated assessments could have a negative effect as they can become completely unmanageable. When putting a plan together, the time management of the individual and/or group, as well as the assessors, should be taken into consideration and not become a burden.

Suitable to the candidate needs

Assessment should always take into consideration the needs of the individual and /or group.

The criteria of most programmes can be assessed in a variety of ways which enables the assessor to steer the individual and/or group to the desired outcome by utilising different methods based on the candidate’s personal circumstances.


Explain the responsibilities of the assessor with regard to:



Constructive feedback

It is up to the assessor to organise any assessment programme that the individual/ group will embark on. Both the candidate and the assessor will need to agree on the most suitable source of evidence to use for the particular unit/s and agree upon an achievable target date, along with times and places for the assessment to take place. It may also be necessary for the assessor to contact any staff, management, company or organisation to relay their intentions of assessment, as some places of work can have very strict guidelines in place, for example- the prison service, and authorisation would need to be sought.

The assessor needs to ensure that the planning is holistic with the aim of looking at the overall picture.

The range of assessment methods and strategies to be used should first be checked with the awarding body. This will clarify if the chosen method is suitable as evidence. Any prior learning would also have to be taken into account during the planning process. The assessor would need to seek out this information at the beginning to reduce ant duplication.

Both formative and summative assessments and be used to assess the performance, knowledge and understanding of the individual, who will need to provide evidence of assessment criteria for the assessor to check over. It is the assessor’ responsibility to ensure they have an up to date copy of the criteria to which they intend to assess. Based on this they can then provide feedback to the individual on how to achieve the required result if the requirements have not been met. However, the assessor has a responsibility to the candidate to ensure that the correct assessment methods are being used for the task at hand

All resulting decisions will then need to be recorded and justified.

When providing feedback, the assessor should ensure they identify and reinforce any strengths witnessed from the evidence. Praise on achieving aspects of the criteria is essential for further progress to occur.

At this point, it is important to remember to focus on the activity/ task and not the person. The assessor needs to be objective, and not allow the feedback to get personal. It is deemed as poor practice to begin labelling the candidate as ‘lazy’ or ‘uninterested’ for example. The assessor needs to steer the conversation towards what was actually seen, heard, or read.

On discussing areas for improvement whereby the individual has fallen short of the desired result, the assessor and the individual would need to define and agree on the arising issues and work together to construct a solution, setting out new aims and objectives and ways of how these can, and will be achieved.

It is imperative that any feedback be given as close to the activity as possible. This will allow for a more accurate account of the assessment.


Identify the company and industry rules and regulations relevant to assessment in your own area of practice?

The College and the Awarding Bodies used within the department strive to ensure that there are no unnecessary barriers when it comes to assessing sports students.

The requirements and assessment methods in place for students offer a flexibility to enable a wide range of individuals to be able to demonstrate the level of competence required to meet the standards in a fair and reliably way.

To ensure this is carried out correctly, the college is required to provide an Internal Verification Policy and Assessment Plan, that highlights the objectives, strategies and procedures that show that the department is approaching assessment in the correct manner, which is in line with both college and national requirements. This allows the IV to check that assessment is being carried out and is consistent across the board. Any internal verification done within the department must be completed by someone not teaching on the course being run.

All assessors, internal and external verifiers must be of a standard set out by the NGB/Awarding Bodies for which they need to monitor any changes and implement these accordingly. Any work that has been assessed by an unqualified assessor would need to be counter signed by a qualified assessor. This is to ensure that the evidence, methods and processes that have been used have been checked and authenticated.


Compare the strengths and limitations of a range of assessment methods with regard to your individual learners?


Identify the key factors to consider when planning assessment?


Readiness of the Learner

Time constraints

Workplace requirements



Evaluate the benefits of a holistic approach to assessment?


The opportunities for observation


Explain how to plan a holistic approach to assessment


Summarise the types of risks that may be involved in assessment in your own area of responsibility.

Consider both H&S risks and business risks.


Explain how to minimise risks through the planning process.


Correct Legislation

Policies and Procedures


Explain the importance of involving the learner and others in the assessment process?



Range of experience and understanding

How to involve expert witnesses


Summarise the types of information that should be made available to learners and others involved in the assessment process e.g.:




Skills analysis outcomes



Explain how peer and self-assessment can be used effectively to promote learner involvement and personal responsibility in the assessment of learning?


Development of analytical skills

Understanding of specifications

Self reflection of own performance


Explain how assessment arrangements can be adapted to meet the needs of individual learners e.g.

Time consideration, work/shift patterns etc.

Confidentiality issues

Consideration of learning styles

Variation of assessment methods


Explain how to judge whether evidence is:

Sufficient – Are the requirements met and how do you know?

Authentic – Is it the learner’s own work and how do you know?

Current – Have the working practices around that activity changed since the evidence was produced?


Explain how to ensure that assessment decisions are:

Made against specified criteria – Refer to your standards

Valid – Accurately measured using a method that suits the situation

Reliable – Ensuring the same results regardless of who is assessing

Fair – That equality diversity and individual needs have been considered


Evaluate the importance of quality assurance in the assessment process?


Summarise the quality assurance and standardisation procedures in your own area of practice including:

Internal procedures

QCF and awarding institute guidelines


Summarise the procedures to follow when there are disputes concerning assessment in your own area of practice:

Internal and external procedures, including appeals


Explain the importance of following procedures for the management of information relating to assessment.

Give consideration to:

The NVQ code of practice 2006

Regulatory arrangements for the QCF 2008

Company policies and procedures

Awarding institutes policies and procedures


Explain how feedback and questioning contribute to the assessment process?


Explain legal issues, policies and procedures relevant to assessment, including those for confidentiality, health, safety and welfare.

Give consideration to:

Data protection

Child protection


Health and safety


Explain the contribution that technology can make to the assessment process?


Evaluate the requirements for equality and diversity and where appropriate bilingualism in relation to assessment?


Explain the value of reflective practice and continuing professional development in the assessment process?


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