Let me start of by thanking you – Sonwabile & Micheal and the forum - for the invitation to speak at this gathering.Do you want the short version or the long version…….The long versionIn the beginning God created……..LolDid you know that South Africa has 11 official languagesCan you name them?Sorry South Africa has 12 languages – sign language…I am very sorry South Africa actually has “13” languages Can anyone name the 13th language? ACRONYMS….Lol!We live ina world of acronyms……
What does Benchmark stands for?B – BETTER – product and services levels than you are used toE – EFFICIENT – good at what we doN – NEW – new assessment items/questions - change in the way things were done - NKOTBC - CUSTOMER-FOCUSSED – customer is king! We believe in good (excellent) customer serviceH – HONEST – authentic / truthfulM – MODERATED – internally moderated by registered moderatorsA – ACCESSIBLE – we try to make it accessible in terms of language / layout (bigger font), more space to answer, etc.R – REGULAR – we have exams every month (twice in November) 12 times per yearK – KNOWLEDGABLE – we make use of experienced and qualified assessors and moderators who are subject matter experts
We want to be THE assessment partner in the industryWe want to be THE external exam agency of choice – we are currently in the processes of seeking accreditation for NQF 1 qualifications with Umalusi but we have been doing quality internal exams through Media Works Internal Examinations (MWIE) for the last 2 – 3 years.I must just stress this that we are a separate private entity from Media Works; we were birth out of the need identified by Media Works as a leader in ABET provisioning.
We are geared towards meeting and exceeding national standardsBy providing valid and reliable assessment we believe we would be able to provide valuable feedback that will have a positive impact on the quality of teaching and learningThere is currently only 1 accredited private assessment body in South Africa and we firmly believe with the ever increasing demand for skills and training opportunities, the demand of more credible and flexible assessment opportunities will also increase.We believe through our world class assessment products we will be able to confirm the competency of candidates that take our assessments and this will allow us to make inferences of their abilities of which we will be able to test and certify
As I mentioned earlier, we have an experienced staff: examiners, internal moderators as well as professional staff and administrative staffWe specialise in offering credible assessments in ABET levels 1, 2 and 3We are an emerging assessment body / agency / partner that is currently in the process of accreditation with Umalusi for the full GETC: ABET – SO WE ARE NOT ACCREDITED TO OFFER LEVEL 4 (NQF 1) at the moment.We have gone through the initial stages of accreditationThe next step is for them to give us a report on their audit they didThereafter we will be embarking on a pilot process where we have to show evidence of our competency / readiness to run a full scale examination
Our assessments also comply with NQF principles Mock exams – we have released papers for free recently (ML & Comms level 1, 2 and 3)
We have assessments on a monthly basis – as indicated earlierResults: after receipt of scripts from clients we take on average at least 2 weeks to mark, moderate and issue the resultsCertificates are issued a week laterWe have an appeals process in place:We offer re-marks, Transparency: Clients can view the scripts of learners after the exams at our premisesyou can request audits of results if you are not satisfied with the outcome or the resultsFormal appeals
Competitive prices – which includes: R 210 per question paperRegistrationAssessment (POE) and exams (question papers), distribution, marking, moderation, resulting and certification (R210.00 per exam)Re-marking,audits, re-issue of certificates, etc. comes at an additional costsBecause we are setting new standards in assessment in the sector it presents a new opportunity for experienced practitioners to add value to the assessment process by being part of the standard setting process. we are quite open to change….as setting standards is a negotiating process between stakeholders of a particular sector
Clients can register their learners directly with BenchmarkWe have standard registration forms, policies and documents
Specific assessment demands: Exam session of 5 days (Monday – Friday)Special requests for examplewriting on Saturdays or having two papers?
Together WE: Benchmark,MQA and all its partners - we are able to meet and exceed our targetsWE NEED EACH OTHER! To build AND expand this sector to ensure that we reach our targets!
Benchmark presentation at MQA provincial forum
The future of assessment John April 22 June 2012
Who is Benchmark? GETC QCTO SMS HIV ABET LoL DBE SAQA OUTA MQA OHSAIDS RPL FLC DOL DHET NQF
Another acronymN. K. O. T. B.E I N H L OW D E C K
B.E.N.C.H.M.A.R.K.• B ETTER• E FFICIENT• NEW• C USTOMER-FOCUSSED• HONEST• MODERATED• A CCESSIBLE• R EGULAR• K NOWLEDGEABLE
Our vision• To be the nationally recognized Assessment Partner in the general and further education and training sector• To be the external examination agency of choice
Our mission• To meet national standards• To improve the quality of teaching and learning in industry through valid and reliable assessments• To address the assessment demands• To produce competent learners
BENCHMARK – who are WE?• We are a registered company• Qualified assessors and moderators• Qualified assessment instrument developers and subject matter experts (SME’s)
What we offer• Unit standards based summative assessments : – Communication in English and Mathematical Literacy in English and Afrikaans (AET Levels 1 – 3) – Communication in Sepedi, SeSwati, Xitsonga, Setswana, Tshivenda, IsiXhosa and IsiZulu(AET Level 1)• Portfolio of Evidence (POE) Assessments• Mock Exams
Benefits• Current and credible assessments• Availability and flexibility of assessments• Monthly registrations• Faster turn around time – statement of results issued within two weeks• Certificates issued within one week of results
More benefits• Highly controlled process• Competitive prices Competitive prices – which includes: • Registration, Assessment (POE) and exams (question papers), distribution, marking, moderation, resulting and certification (R210.00 per exam)• No annual centre registration fee• Results tracking system• Currently in process of seeking accreditation from Umalusi to assess at NQF 1
Our future• Meet and exceed national standards• Provide quality teaching and learning in industry through reliable and valid assessments• Meet client specific assessment demands• Produce highly competent learners through world class assessment products in partnership with accredited AET providers
Your assessment partner of choice Thank you for your time on behalf of Team Benchmark.
My contact details:• Contact me at 074 344 2302• Office (011) 209 0900 extension 3933• Email firstname.lastname@example.org