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SSAT National Headteacher Steering Group
 

SSAT National Headteacher Steering Group

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Isabel Nisbet's presentation slides at the SSAT National Headteacher Steering Group.

Isabel Nisbet's presentation slides at the SSAT National Headteacher Steering Group.

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    SSAT National Headteacher Steering Group SSAT National Headteacher Steering Group Presentation Transcript

    • AN UPDATE FROM OFQUAL Isabel Nisbet Acting CEO 12 November 2009
    • Outline
      • An update on Ofqual
          • Maintaining standards
          • What’s on the agenda
          • An independent regulator in an Election year
    • Ofqual
      • Established by Apprenticeships, Skills, Children and Learning Bill 2009
      • Will report to Parliament, not Government
          • Five statutory objectives:
            • Standards in qualifications
            • Standards in [National Curriculum and Early Years] assessments
            • Public confidence
            • Awareness
            • Efficiency
    • Ofqual’s vision
      • The independent regulator of qualifications and assessments that are valued and trusted by learners, users and the wider public.
    • Ofqual’s vision
      • The independent regulator of qualifications and assessments that are valued and trusted by learners, users and the wider public.
    • Ofqual’s vision
      • The independent regulator of qualifications and assessments that are valued and trusted by learners, users and the wider public.
    • Ofqual’s vision
      • The independent regulator of qualifications and assessments that are valued and trusted by learners, users and the wider public .
    • Where we are now
      • Royal Assent today (we hope!)
      • Consultation soon on how Ofqual will exercise its new functions, powers and duties
      • Working on transitional arrangements
    • Preparing for vesting as an independent regulator
    • Vesting Day
    • The longer term
    • Where we are now
      • Royal Assent today (we hope!)
      • Consultation soon on how Ofqual will exercise its new functions, powers and duties
      • Working on transitional arrangements
      • Preparing to be an independent organisation
    • Where we are now
      • Royal Assent today (we hope!)
      • Consultation soon on how Ofqual will exercise its new functions, powers and duties
      • Working on transitional arrangements
      • Preparing to be an independent organisation
      • Appointing our new Board
    • Where we are now
      • Royal Assent today (we hope!)
      • Consultation soon on how Ofqual will exercise its new functions, powers and duties
      • Working on transitional arrangements
      • Preparing to be an independent organisation
      • Appointing our new Board
      • Meantime, regulating NOW at a time of change and challenge
    • Maintaining standards
      • Standards of what?
    • Standards of assessment and standards of performance
    • Standards of assessment
      • The height of the hurdle, not how many people jump over the hurdle
      • Language of consistency, fairness, lack of change – compare the rhetoric of “driving up standards” [of performance against the standard]
      • Measuring change requires unchanging measures
      • No win for the student:
            • “If fewer students than the previous year are awarded the grades then they were weak students, unable to reach the standard; if more students gain the grades then the examination was so easy that the grades are worthless” (Kathleen Tattersall, 2008)
    • The public interest in examination assessment standards
      • For schooling – means to reinforce the National Curriculum (England only)
      • (all countries) A vehicle for providing public assurance about the education of young people
      • To provide a measure for the attainment of:
            • Individuals
            • Schools
            • The nation?
          • To provide a basis for discrimination among applicants:
            • Further/Higher Education
            • Employment
            • The exam content must be valid (in relation to the matters of concern to the selector)
            • The exam results should be reliable
    • The public interest (ctd)
      • An assurance of competence/fitness to practise
      • Public protection/safety
            • Invasion of the human body
            • Work with vulnerable members of the public
            • Work which affects the safety of the public
            • Work required to provide public goods (e.g. roads, environmental infrastructure)
            • Consumer protection
    • Maintaining standards in public examinations
      • Setting appropriate standards for the attainment to be shown
      • Defining how categories/grades are to be awarded
      • Ensuring that the award means what it says and can be understood/used
      • Ensuring that different versions of the SAME qualification (eg A level history) are genuinely comparable
      • Fairness to candidates
      • Commanding confidence
    • Maintaining exam standards – how we do it
      • Ensure that the organisations running the exams are able to control their own standards (institutional audit)
      • Examination Design
            • Number and design of units
            • Grading structure
            • Methods of assessment
          • Adjustment during the live marking process
            • QA of markers’ judgements
            • Statistical checks and balances
        • Retrospective monitoring and feeding lessons into design
    • Some challenges to confidence in standards
      • Grade drift (or larger numbers getting higher grades)
          • Questioning of comparability between subjects:
            • Research-based
            • Urban myths
          • Change in the system
          • Change in structure/mode of assessment
          • Change in the requirements of the subject
          • Concerns about malpractice (eg internet plagiarism)
          • Perceived pressures to compromise standards
            • To show increased performance
            • Market pressures
          • Wish to preserve the exam misery we suffered….
    • The cold shower theory of exams
    • Maintaining standards: two approaches
        • Level of attainment
        • Likelihood of achievement
    • Some issues about standards
      • Relative importance of:
            • Consistency across awarding bodies
            • Consistency over time
            • Flexibility to meet needs
            • Fitness for purpose (needs of the subject/what employers want/what HE wants)
          • Reliability
            • The research
            • Public expectations
          • Uses to which assessment outcomes are put
            • Multiple uses should raise our suspicions
    • What’s on the agenda
      • 14-19 qualifications – widespread change
        • A-levels
            • 6 units to 4
            • “Stretch and challenge”
            • The A*
    • What’s on the agenda
      • 14-19 qualifications – widespread change
        • A-levels
            • 6 units to 4
            • “Stretch and challenge”
            • The A*
    • The A*
      • To aid discrimination among high achievers
      • Universities initially sceptical but many will use it
      • To be awarded to those who achieve an A overall and 90%+ of UMS at A2
      • Not the same as those with the highest mark overall
      • Different proportions in different subjects
      • Consistency among awarding bodies in the same subject
    • What’s on the agenda
      • 14-19 qualifications – widespread change
        • A-levels
            • 6 units to 4
            • “Stretch and challenge”
            • The A*
          • GCSEs
            • Modular structures – how to maintain the standard?
            • GCSE science
    • What’s on the agenda
      • 14-19 qualifications – widespread change
        • A-levels
            • 6 units to 4
            • “Stretch and challenge”
            • The A*
          • GCSEs
            • Modular structures – how to maintain the standard?
            • GCSE science
          • Functional skills
            • From pilot to mainstream
            • Consistency V flexibility
            • A hurdle or not a hurdle?
    • More on the 14-19 agenda
      • Diplomas
            • Early days
            • How to support the best teaching and learning
            • Phase 4
            • Delivery issues
            • Design issues
          • The vocational offer
            • Popular stand-alone vocational qualifications
            • Combining vocational with academic learning
            • UCAS and performance points
    • Innovation
    • Innovation – issues for Ofqual
      • Is the exam system keeping up with curricular change?
      • Are paper exams VALID to assess learning which uses technology
      • Are there barriers to innovation by awarding bodies in what they offer you?
      • How do we break through the glass ceiling and modernise large-volume school qualifications?
    • The independent regulator in an Election year
    • What we are not
      • Education policy-makers for any Party
      • Apologists for the Government’s manifesto for qualifications or assessments
      • Apologists for the Opposition’s manifesto for qualifications or assessments
      • Assistance to making things look good
      • Assistance to making things look bad
    • What we should do
      • Set out clear principles – about standards, fairness, confidence – that all can use
            • Next Chief Regulator’s Report (December 2009)
      • Always talk from an evidence base
            • Publish data/findings where you can before the Election is called
      • Listen to what all the parties are saying
      • Continue in dialogue with all
    • Conclusions
      • Legislation is now in place to establish Ofqual
      • We shall illuminate the debate about maintaining standards
      • A source of assurance during change in 14-19 qualifications
      • Supporting innovation to ensure that the system remains fit for purpose
      • Non-partisan principles to inform policy debate in an Election year
      • Thank you
      • [email_address]
      • www.ofqual.gov.uk
    •