A Quick Guide to Contextualise Classroom Assessment to Online Assessment Leave a comment

As the world responds to COVID-19, most training organisations are taking their classroom training to online training.

The extraordinary situation we now have led many training providers to test out the online training platform for the first time. We know that to convert classroom-based training to online training can be somewhat tricky.

As a supplier to the Australian RTO sector, we believe RTOs must now reconsider how they conduct “business as usual” and transition from traditional classroom training programs and embrace online and blended delivery models wherever possible to continue trading or to improve the business profits

students require training and certification to meet industry needs – including practical and hands-on courses that require skills to be performed by the student and assessed by a trainer/assessor.

At VET Resources, we offer an extensive range of digital training and assessment resources. Most of the packages we have developed are designed and developed for online training delivery that an RTO can quickly deploy in their online learning environment.

What is assessment contextualisation?

As we know, contextualisation is the process to adapt training so that it looks ‘custom-made’ for use in a specific environment – in terms of terminology, application, language, examples, delivery and assessment.

Contextualisation is achieved by including, modifying or substituting text within units of competency and usually within the range statement or evidence guide.

It will help if you do not contextualise to an extent, that you change the conditions of assessment, or what the student will be able to do, know and feel by the end of the course.

We simply want to tailor the way it’s delivered and some of the delivery materials used to enhance understanding, learning, applying that learning, and the theory and practice in a particular environment.

Contextualisation must be in-line with training package rules while considering the local context of the organisational and regulatory requirements, standard procedures, policies, and workplace infrastructure. It should not negatively impact the integrity of assessment or the outlines standards in a unit of competence and the training package.

No matter which assessment method (classroom or online) an RTO uses, the assessment evidence collected during the process must be:

  • Valid: The assessment tasks to be conducted in an online environment should be directly relevant to the unit of competency’s assessment requirements.
  • Sufficient: An RTO must collect adequate, relevant evidence to judge competence. Until all the ‘unit of competency’ requirements are demonstrated, a student cannot be considered competent. However, depending on the unit of competency being assessed, an RTO may assess only some components of the assessments required.
  • Authentic: An RTO must ensure that evidence collected during an assessment belongs to the person being assessed. An RTO must verify that the person assessed is the same person that will be issued with a qualification or attainment statement. It is challenging in an online or remote learning environment because there are more opportunities for students to submit someone else’s work than classroom learning.
  • Current: Assessment evidence is from the present or very recent past to show the student is competent when the RTO makes an assessment decision. Currency of the assessment evidence will depend on the assessment task.

Steps to contextualise your existing classroom assessment to online assessments:

  • Validate the assessment resources to ensure that assessment tools meet the training package and ASQA clause 1.8 guidelines.
  • Review instructions and update to meet online assessment requirements. For example, you may use a closed book exam in the classroom; however, you believe an open book exam will be suitable online.
  • Add theory assessment online through the quiz, and you can use auto marking for multiple-choice, true/false and other similar types of questions.
  • Practical and simulation assessment can be online; however, you need to find the best ways to collect the evidence.

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