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Criteria for the approval of an Assessment Quality Partner

The QCTO will appoint an entity as an assessment quality partner only if it is satisfied that the entity has:

i.      The necessary expertise, experience and standing in relation to the occupational qualifications or foundational learning for which the assessment quality partner is appointed; and

ii.      the resources necessary to perform its functions

In terms of clause of the QCTO Delegation Policy, 22 June 2011 the criteria have been defined in detail as follows:

i.     be  recommended  to  the  QCTO  by  the  relevant      DQP  during  the occupational                           development  process at a point  when they submit  an

occupational profile. Possible evidence: letter of recommendation from the DQP; Attendance register; DQP progress report with endorsement of the selected body by constituency to ensure trust and acceptance; extracts from minutes of scoping meeting where the decision took place;

ii.      have access to communities of expert practitioners in the occupation/s concerned;    Possible evidence: Attendance registers; reference to extracts from websites with links to CEPs or any other relevant information such as an indication as to where the AQP will source expertise to design assessments;

iii.    have standing in the occupation or occupations concerned; Possible evidence: cross reference to websites, publications and any other relevant information;

iv.     have access to assessors and other human resources necessary to perform the AQP functions using criteria and guidelines provided by the QCTO. Possible evidence: Database of assessors

v.     have access to a reliable management information system in the format required by the   QCTO; Possible evidence: Organogram or reference to an organisation to whom this function has been outsourced;

vi.     have the financial resources necessary to establish the AQP function and implement effective, efficient and transparent financial management and internal control systems, verified by means of a written commitment by its relevant authority; Possible evidence: evidence that the functions have been catered for in the organisation budget; a letter from the AQP’s relevant authority committing the necessary financial resources to fund the AQP;

vii.    have a proposed fee structure funding model to maintain the delivery of AQP services for    a minimum of five years aligned to the QCTO Fee Structure Policy;

viii.    be willing to sign the QCTO Code of Conduct (Schedule 4) if delegation is approved;

ix.     have  research  capacity  even  if  through  a  third  party  arrangement;

Possible evidence:   cross reference to reports or process of how this criterion will be addressed; and

x.     Proof  that  the  organisation  is  a  juristic  person:  Possible  evidence:

submit a valid tax clearance certificate where appropriate.

Proof must be submitted to demonstrate adherence with the criteria mentioned above.

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The functions of an Assessment Quality Partner – AQP

  1. An Assessment Quality Partner must, in respect of the qualifications and part qualifications specified in the Service Level Agreement;
  • recommend the external assessment specifications document for approval by the QCTO;
  • recommend the external assessment specifications document for approval by the QCTO;
  • develop and maintain a national data-bank of instruments for external assessments;publish exemplars of external assessments;recommend to the QCTO the accreditation and withdrawal of accreditation of skills development providers for the knowledge and/or practical skills component using criteria and guidelines provided by the QCTO;
  • register assessors and moderators for the external assessments;develop criteria for the accreditation of assessment centres or the approval of assessment sites for external assessments;recommend to the QCTO the accreditation and withdrawal of accreditation of assessment centres;
  • and recommend to the QCTO the accreditation and withdrawal of accreditation of skills development providers for the knowledge and/or practical skills component using criteria and guidelines provided by the QCTO.

 

  1. Coordinate and manage external assessment processes;
  2. Record and upload learner external assessment applications and achievements to the QCTO;
  3. Moderate at least 10% of learner external assessments;
  4. Recommend the certification of learners to the QCTO;
  5. Implement an appeals policy as guided by an assessment policy;
  6. Conduct learner tracer studies;
  7. Promote continuous professional development of AQP associated practitioners;
  8. Report to the QCTO on the performance of its functions in the form and manner required by the QCTO; and
  9. Provide a mechanism for RPL.

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What are Qualification Assessment Specifications – QAS

The AQP will set the national standards to ensure validity and consistency of the external   summative   assessment.  The   QAS  form   an   integral   part   of   every occupational qualification and are developed for each occupational qualification and outline and record the following information:

  1. Title of occupational qualification;
  2. Curriculum reference number;
  3. Name and details of the AQP;
  4. External assessment strategy;
  5. Key occupational outcomes;
  6. The point(s) at which the qualification must be assessed (allowing for production cycle if required);
  7. Critical  identified  elements  of  ‘internal  assessment’  to  be  externally moderated (if any);
  8. Eligibility requirements for candidates for external assessment;
  1. Exemptions;
  2. Minimum requirements for the registration of assessors;
  3. Provide links to the AQP website for information on:

–              Criteria for accreditation of assessment centres

–              Exemplars of external assessment instruments

–              Relevant sections of AQP assessment policy and procedures: those required for public information, including language(s) of assessment and RPL;

The Qualification Assessment Specifications are developed during the qualification development process and it is expected that a minimum of 50% of the working group members should be experts in that particular occupational qualification.

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QCTO Assessment Quality Partner (AQP) principles and values

The following principles and values have been taken into consideration during the development of these criteria and guidelines for becoming an AQP:The following principles and values have been taken into consideration during the development of these criteria and guidelines for becoming an AQP:

External Assessment systems and processes must:

  1. be fair, reliable, valid, ethical and transparent;
  2. be consistent across time, place, role players and respond to a non-sectoral demand-led model;
  3. use methodologies that are fit-for-purpose and reflect a consistent level of higher  cognitive challenge;
  4.  avoid tendencies of exclusivity;
  5. adhere to the QCTO values which show:
  • i. innovation and excellence
  • ii. empowerment and recognition
  • iii. respect and dignity
  • iv.  ethics and integrity
  • v.  ownership and accountability
  • vi.  authenticity

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Glossary

Accreditation

Accreditation The certification, usually for a particular period, of a person, a body or an institution having the capacity to fulfil a particular function in the quality assurance system.

Assessment

The process of collecting evidence of learners’ work to measure and make judgements about the competence or non- competence of specified NQF registered occupational qualifications and part qualifications.

Assessment centre

A centre accredited by the QCTO for the purpose of conducting external integrated summative assessments for specified NQF registered occupational qualifications and part qualifications.

Assessment Quality Partner (AQP)

A body delegated by the QCTO to manage and coordinate the external integrated summative assessments of specified NQF registered occupational qualifications and part qualifications.

Occupational qualification

A qualification associated with a trade, occupation or profession, resulting from work-based learning, developed and quality assured under the auspices of the QCTO and consisting of the knowledge, practical skills and work experiencestandards and requires an external summative assessment.

Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL)

The comparison of the previous learning and experience, howsoever obtained, against the learning outcomes required for a specified qualification and the acceptance for the purpose of qualification of that which meets the requirements.

Summative assessment

A component of the assessment process and refers to the culmination of the summative process when learners are subjected to a final sitting at the end of the learning cycle.

Verification

The process managed by the relevant body for externally verifying (checking) the authenticity of processes to confirm or overturn the findings.

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