Internal Quality Assurance of Assessment – Setting the standards!
In Education and Training, there are two main concepts of Quality Assurance: Internal Quality Assurance (IQA) and External Quality Assurance (EQA). Internal Quality Assurance ensures that the assessors and teachers make consistent, reliable and valid assessment decisions. External Quality Assurance is carried out through an awarding body to support and help maintain robust IQA systems and processes.
Training provides individuals with an efficient opportunity to learn. Internal Quality assurance (also known as Internal Verification) is integral to any training and assessment program. It provides reassurance to learners that the standards against which they are being assessed, are being adhered to. It also provides reassurance to the awarding body that the standards are being applied rigorously.
Accreditation adds value by recognising what the learner knows or has understood as a result of the training is recognised and regulated. The learner’s knowledge or ability needs to be assessed against a standard and this assessment is carried out by an assessor. Once the standards have been met, formal recognition is given by an awarding body that may provide the learner with a certificate to prove their achievement.
Internal Verifiers are responsible for the IQA within an educational institute and are also known as IV’s or Internal Quality Assurers. They ensure that an assessor must know what s/he is looking for when carrying out assessment of learners’ work. All decisions must ultimately be evaluated against the set standards which help ensure consistent decision-making by one or more assessors. This is also known as Standardisation. Furthermore, the methods of assessment must be capable of producing correct, valid data from learners. In other words, Internal Quality Assurance or Internal Verification is the process which ensures that assessment processes are valid, authentic, reliable, sufficient and current.
Taking all of the above into account, as well as to better understand Internal Quality Assurance of assessment, we can look at Level 4 Internal Quality Assurance & Level 4 External Quality Assurance. Both these online training courses not only offer a clear understanding, but also ensure proper practice, of quality assurance in education.
The above mentioned two courses will shed light on the understanding that workplace and classroom-based assessment has its strengths in terms of authenticity, reconnecting teaching and learning, causing educational impact and acceptability, and feasibility through local assessment.
It is clear, therefore, that the implementation of an effective Internal Quality Assurance System will require a training program for the staff, organized arrangement and procedure for the evaluation of results and strict validity checks. The more that teachers can be engaged in the IQA process, in selecting methodologies, generating standards, discussing criteria, etc., the more they will be empowered in the educational process.