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  1. Organising for Success Organisational planning for effective Diploma assessment administration – Guidance for consortia Delivery 08

  2. The successful award of a Diploma will require Centres within a Consortia to share information and work together to carry out all administrative processes accurately, securely and promptly. This will be key to ensuring that learners get the right Diploma award on time. • For the delivery of any component qualification or qualification unit where there are two or more centres involved decisions need to be made about which centre undertakes the administrative transactions with awarding bodies and how information is then shared between the centres. Understanding and working closely with the Component Awarding Bodies (CABs) will be important. First unit assessments of principal learning will be in January, with the entries deadline in October. Consortia should have organised themselves ready for the autumn term. • Key transactions to be considered include: qualification and unit entries, payments, reasonable adjustments, access arrangements, estimated grades, PLTS and work experience completion, external assessments, internal assessments, results, enquires about results, and special considerations. • CABs can accommodate certain different approaches to consortium organisation and different centres providing information for qualification administration. However, not all forms of consortia – CAB interactions will be possible in September 2008 and there are some risks associated with certain options which although they can be worked-around in practice, could be avoided if a different model is selected at the planning stage. CABs will only work with centres that have been approved by them for that qualification and are also constrained in other ways. • This guidance provides information on each of the key administrative transactions required between CABs and centres within a consortium and, if they have not already been organised within the consortium and with the CAB, a pragmatic solution for 2008. Introduction

  3. Overview • For many centres involved in the Diploma, being part of a consortium is a departure from normal ways of working • Ensuring Diploma delivery and examinations can be effectively administered, centres will need to undertake all the required administration with awarding bodiesaccurately, securely and promptly • As part of a consortium, administering the Diploma will be different from how qualifications have been traditionally managed by exam officers in individual and independent centres • To successfully complete all the administration required within a consortium, centres will benefit from good coordination, clear roles and responsibilities and timely communication • This guidance is designed to support consortium in deciding how best to organise the administration requirements of the Diploma between all centres in light of awarding body requirements and local conditions

  4. Home centres should: • 1. Maintain oversight of learners and their progress at qualification level, requiring: • Good communication between home centres and delivery centres on a unit basis confirming actions are complete • Data sharing capability (technical and legal) between centres in line with data protection legislation. • 2. Make qualification entries and have the responsibility to ensure all unit entries are made • 3. Apply for reasonable adjustments and access arrangements on a qualification basis and communicated to all centres within the consortium hosting any assessment activity for that learner • 4. Conduct the external assessments to avoid learners need to travel during the exam periods (even if the home centre does not deliver the teaching of the unit) • 5. Input the completion of work experience and PLTS into the Diploma aggregation service • Delivery centres should: • 1. Conduct the internal assessments (even if the external assessment is hosted by the home centres) • 2. Confirm unit entries are made to the home centres Summary of the pragmatic guidance for September 2008

  5. All centres in a consortium making entries or hosting assessments must be recognised/ approved with the CAB for each qualification • For all two-tier qualifications, the assessment centre should make the unit entry • By default, following an entry/ registration, most CABs will communicate and assume responsibility lies with the centre that made the entry/ registration for: • Payment • Results • For qualifications where there is no entry at qualification level, but only at unit level/ registration (e.g. some ASL qualifications, Project and Extended Project): • Home centres should make the unit entries (and where ever possible host the assessment for that unit) • When the assessment is NOT held at the home centre specific arrangements must be made with the CAB to arrange for assessment papers to get to the correct centre • Functional skills qualifications should be entered by the assessment centre (normally this will also be the learner’s home centre). If the assessment centre is not the learner’s home centre, the results that follow entry will need to be transferred within the consortium. • Chosen CABs should be kept informed of consortia plans and their guidelines followed. Any need for alternative arrangements must be discussed and arranged with the CAB for the specific component qualification Summary of the pragmatic guidance for September 2008 • Assessments • Special consideration cases • Estimated grades • Enquiries about results

  6. Consortium Home Centre* Component Awarding Body (CAB) Learner cohort lists Qualification and Unit entries Payment Reasonable adjustments/ access arrangements External assessment support materials External assessment papers Entry confirmation Cohort lists Flow of funding Internal assessment marks and moderation External assessment materials & papers Special consideration or EAR evidence Absence & sickness records Internal Assessment evidence Results Reasonable adjustments/ access arrangements Internal assessment marks Estimated grades Special consideration cases Estimated grades Results Enquiries About Results (EAR) Delivery Centre* Information flow Possible Information flow (If required) This figure shows at a high level the different transactions that need to take place between centres in a consortium and between centres and the CABs. For every transaction a decision needs to be made on how it will be managed and coordinated between centres within the consortium and which centre interfaces with the CAB. The guidance will walk through how this picture can come together. Summary of transactions * Both home or delivery centre may be the assessment centre (see slide 7)

  7. To help position this guidance, we have conceptualised Diploma delivery as comprising three areas of work: the teaching and learning underpinning the Diploma, the qualifications that make up the Diploma and the administration of Diploma learning and awarding. • The focus of this guide is to support Diploma administration and it complements other NAA and DCSF support activities: Context of the guidance within consortia support activities Qualifications Organisation support: To support consortia to organise their centres to effectively coordinate the administration of the Diploma inline with the requirements of awarding bodies. This is the purpose of this guidance. The Diploma NAA ‘Getting ready for the Diploma’ readiness guide and events: Providing support to the exams office to prepare for administering the diploma within centres Administration Teaching and learning NAA systems support guidance and events: Provision of training for the Diploma aggregation service, the Unique Learner Number (ULN) and Learner Registration Service (LRS) to support the management of the Diploma

  8. There are many appropriate ways a consortium can organise itself to ensure the Diploma is effectively administered. • Some centres are comfortable working as part of a consortium and will have organised themselves in a way that best accommodates the consortia/ centres’ needs. • Senior leaders in consortia should agree how they are going to coordinate centres and ensure roles and responsibilities are clear to all parties, especially the exams office. • If the consortium has not yet decided how to organise itself to administer the Diploma, this guidance provides a pragmatic solution for September 2008. For centres that have already made arrangements with their chosen CABs this guidance may act as a useful test for the plans, however it does not mean other approaches to coordination are wrong. • This guidance should be used in conjunction with detailed and specific guidance provided by awarding bodies on managing the administration of their Diploma qualifications. Communication with awarding bodies on their requirements and flexibilities in administering the Diploma is essential. • This guidance focuses on the coordination of Diploma administration across a consortium and therefore focuses on administering Diploma component qualifications in conjunction with Component Awarding Bodies (CABs). Interactions with Diploma Awarding Bodies (DABs) occurs on a centre by centre level and thus is not a focus of consortia coordination. Support on Diploma awarding administration is provided by NAA and DABs themselves. Use of this guidance

  9. Terminology • The following definitions describe the terms used throughout this guidance: • HOME centre: • is the centre where a learner is enrolled • have pastoral responsibility for their learners • DELIVERY centres: • are the centres that deliver teaching to learners • have special facilities/ expertise for a particular Line of Learning (LoL) • may also be a learners home centre • ASSESSMENT centres: • are centres where assessment for each unit takes place • are, normally, the home centre for external assessments and the delivery centre for internal assessments • may be the home or delivery centre

  10. Cohort Lists Learner entry/ registration Payment Reasonable adjustments and access arrangements Supporting materials for external assessments Assessment papers Internal marks and moderation Special considerations PLTS and work experience completion Sickness and absence records Estimated grades Results Enquiries about results This guidance provides information on the following administrative transactions that will need to be completed to ensure the Diploma may be successfully awarded: Diploma administration

  11. Implications of consortium working • The home centre is accountable for the learner, including • Monitoring learner progress towards their Diploma • Ensuring that learners are entered for all the right qualifications and units • The home centre should provide the learner with their results at qualification level. This is so that all results can be provided together on ‘Diploma results day’ and the home centre can provide support as needed • Learners should be able to do their assessments at a centre that is convenient for them. This is likely to mean: • Normally, home centres host the external assessments • Normally, delivery centres host the internal assessments NB. This may be dependant on the Line of Learning as in some instances teachers may move centres, rather than learners.

  12. 1. Cohort List Component Awarding Body (CAB) Home centre 1. Cohort List Delivery centre Delivery centre as the assessment centre for internal assessments Good communication & data exchange capability Home centre as the assessment centre for external assessments • 1. Cohort lists • It is important for all centres to know which learners will be coming to them for teaching – for what qualification at what level. • Centres should communicate with their chosen CAB for each qualification as to whether they require upfront notification of learners pursuing a qualification. • A pragmatic solution for September 2008*: • Home centres compile cohort lists for each qualification • Home centres send delivery centres the cohort lists for the qualifications they teach • If required, home centres provide CABs with cohort lists (as part of upfront registration) Managing Diploma administration in a consortium * The pragmatic solution is intended to provide guidance to consortia that have not made arrangements for 2008 on the way they will coordinate their centres to administer the Diploma. This is not the only way to manage Diploma administration

  13. 2. Component QUALIFICATION entry/ registration Component Awarding Body (CAB) Home centre Delivery centre Delivery centre as the assessment centre for internal assessments Good communication & data exchange capability 2. Component UNIT entry Home centre as the assessment centre for external assessments 2. Component UNIT entry • 2. Learner entry/ registration • Most qualifications require centres to enter/ register at the qualification level and for each unit • Home centres should be responsible for ensuring all their learners have been entered for every required assessment/ unit by the correct centre • For many CABs, the entry/ registration process dictates where invoices, assessment papers, results etc. are sent i.e. to the centre that made the entry • A pragmatic solution for September 2008*: • QUALIFICATION entries are made by the home centre either before unit entries are made or afterwards (allows the home centre to maintain oversight of the qualification for a learner and procedurally allows the overall qualification result to be sent to the home centre, where the learner is enrolled) • UNIT entries are made by the centre that will host the assessment – home or delivery centre (to ensure further assessment related transactions take place with the assessment centre) • If the home centre makes the entry the learner may still undertake their learning in a delivery centre, but still have the external unit assessment in their home centre. • Internally assessed units are entered by a delivery centre Managing Diploma administration in a consortium

  14. 3. Component QUALIFICATION payment Component Awarding Body (CAB) Home centre Delivery centre Delivery centre as the assessment centre for internal assessments Good communication & data exchange capability 3. Component UNIT payment Home centre as the assessment centre for external assessments 3. Component UNIT payment • 3. Payment • CABs will expect payment for entries/ registration in different ways and different times – check with your CAB for their requirements • Normally CABs will expect payment to come from the centre that made the entry/ registration • Funding exchanges/ agreements between home and delivery centres may therefore be necessary • A pragmatic solution for September 2008*: • Central learner funding is provided to the home centres • Home centres pay for qualification entries/ registration directly to the CAB • Home centres transfer the funds to the delivery centre who pays the CAB for unit entries Managing Diploma administration in a consortium

  15. 4. Reasonable adjustment or access arrangement Component Awarding Body (CAB) Home centre Delivery centre 4. Arrangements applied Delivery centre as the Assessment centre for internal assessments Home centre as the assessment centre for external assessments Good communication & data exchange capability • 4. Reasonable adjustments and access arrangements • Applications for reasonable adjustments and access arrangements must be agreed with the CAB for each qualification • Arrangements agreed will need to be applied by the assessment centre • Sharing this personal information between centres may have implications under the Data Protection Act that must be complied with when sharing data • A pragmatic solution for September 2008*: • Home centres make the request to CABs for reasonable adjustments or access arrangements • The arrangements agreed with the CAB are then communicated by the home centre and applied to the learner for that qualification across all centres in the consortium that host an assessment for the learner Managing Diploma administration in a consortium

  16. 5. External assessment pre-release materials Component Awarding Body (CAB) Home centre Delivery centre Delivery centre as the assessment centre for internal assessments 5. External assessment pre-release materials Home centre as the assessment centre for external assessments Good communication & data exchange capability • 5. External assessment pre-release materials • For some external assessments CABs will need to send materials to delivery centres in advance of the exam • Most CABs will assume to send these materials to the centre that made the unit entry/ registration • A pragmatic solution for September 2008*: • Materials to support the external assessment will be sent by the CAB to the home centre that made the entry • If a home centre receives materials, but is not delivering teaching (only the assessment), these materials must be securely transferred to the delivery centre Managing Diploma administration in a consortium

  17. 6. External assessment papers (home centre made entry) Component Awarding Body (CAB) Home centre Delivery centre Good communication & data exchange capability Delivery centre as the assessment centre for internal assessments Home centre as the assessment centre for external assessments • 6. External assessment papers • External assessment papers will be securely delivered to, and collected from, recognised centres • Many CABs will only deliver assessment papers to the centre that made the entry/ registration for the unit/ exam • If assessments are not being held in the centre that made the entry, external exam papers could be sent to the wrong centre unless alternative arrangements are made with the CAB • A pragmatic solution for September 2008*: • The CAB sends assessment papers to the home centre (*only if they made the unit/exam entry*) • The home centre that made the entry hosts the external exam (avoids learners needing to travel to other centres during the examination period) Managing Diploma administration in a consortium

  18. Component Awarding Body (CAB) Home centre 7. Internal assessment marks (if required) Delivery centre 7. Internal assessment marks & internal moderation Delivery centre as the assessment centre for internal assessments Home centre as the assessment centre for external assessments Good communication & data exchange capability • 7. Internal assessment marks and internal moderation • Internal assessment marks will be generated by delivery centres teaching the internal unit • Standardisation of internal assessments will be the responsibility of the delivery centre and should ideally be ensured across the consortium • CABs will assume sampling or that moderators will visit the centre that made the entry for the unit unless alternative arrangements can be made • See www.naa.org.uk for the NAA guide “Delivering the Diploma: A guide to managing internal assessment” for further details on conducting internal assessment for the Diploma • A pragmatic solution for September 2008*: • Internal assessments are likely to be held at the delivery centre (they conduct the teaching) • Delivery centres send internal assessment marks to the CAB and if required to the home centre (the marks will be expected to come from the centre that made the entry by most CABs) • Moderators request samples from each delivery centre • Delivery centres provide the moderator with coursework for taught learners or arrange a visit Managing Diploma administration in a consortium

  19. Component Awarding Body (CAB) Home centre Delivery centre 8. Special consideration case Delivery centre as the assessment centre for internal assessments Good communication & data exchange capability Home centre as the assessment centre for external assessments 8. Special consideration case Managing Diploma administration in a consortium • 8. Special considerations • Applications for special consideration for any particular examination will be expected by most CABs to come from the centre that made the unit entry • It is likely that in learner-orientated special consideration cases the home centre will be best informed and in examination derived cases, the assessment centre will be best informed • Communication between home and delivery centres will be essential in order that all information can be collated when making an special consideration application • A pragmatic solution for September 2008*: • Whichever centre made the unit entry applies for special consideration to the CAB • Home centres will need to inform the delivery centre of any need for making a special consideration application and the corresponding learner details

  20. Diploma aggregation service 9. PLTS and work experience completion Home centre Delivery centre Home centre as the assessment centre for external assessments Delivery centre as the assessment centre for internal assessments Managing Diploma administration in a consortium • 9. PLTS and work experience completion • All Diploma learners will need to have their completion of Personal Learning and Thinking Skills (PLTS) and the required amount of work experience monitored and recorded • Confirmation of the completion of PLTS and work experience must be inputted into the Diploma aggregation service before a Diploma can be claimed • A pragmatic solution for September 2008*: • Home centres confirm the completion of PLTS and work experience in the Diploma aggregation service

  21. Home centre Delivery centre Home centre as the assessment centre for external assessments Good communication & data exchange capability Delivery centre as the assessment centre for internal assessments Managing Diploma administration in a consortium • 10. Absence and sickness records • To inform special consideration applications and the home centre’s pastoral role, centres need to share and cross-reference absence records (from delivery centres) with notification of absence (likely that the learner provides to their home centre) • A pragmatic solution for September 2008*: • Centres will need to share information on learner attendance and reasons for absence

  22. 11. Estimated grades (qualification level) Component Awarding Body (CAB) Home centre Delivery centre 11. Estimated Grades (unit level) Delivery centre as the assessment centre for internal assessments Good communication & data exchange capability Home centre as the assessment centre for external assessments 11. Estimated grades (unit level) Managing Diploma administration in a consortium • 11. Estimated grades • Some CABs will expect estimated grades to be provided on a unit and/or qualification level from the centre that made the unit entry • For home centres to aggregate a learner’s estimated grade on a qualification level, they will need sight of all unit estimated grades provided by delivery centres • A pragmatic solution for September 2008*: • Delivery centres teaching units send estimated grades for the unit to the CAB and, if required, the home centres • Home centres send the ‘qualification level’ estimated grade to the CAB (would require estimated unit grades from other delivery centres)

  23. 12. Results (qualification level) Component Awarding Body (CAB) Home centre Delivery centre Delivery centre as the assessment centre for internal assessments 12. Results (unit level) Good communication & data exchange capability Home centre as the assessment centre for external assessments 12. Results (unit level) Managing Diploma administration in a consortium • 12. Results • For qualifications where results are released on either A-level or GCSE results day, learners are expected to collect their results from their home centre (to avoid travelling) • Most CABs will only send the results to the centre that made the entry for the qualification or unit • Results will often be available electronically • A pragmatic solution for September 2008*: • Overall qualification results will be sent by the CAB to the home centre (that entered the learner for the qualification) • Unit results will be sent to the centre that made the unit entry (the assessment centre for the unit) • Unit results will be passed on from delivery centre to home centres

  24. Component Awarding Body (CAB) Home centre Delivery centre Delivery centre as the assessment centre for internal assessments 13. Enquiry about results Good communication & data exchange capability Home centre as the assessment centre for external assessments 13. Enquiry about results Managing Diploma administration in a consortium • 13. Enquiries About Results (EAR) • Most CABs will require any enquiries about results to be raised by the centre that made the unit entry • Home and delivery centres will need to share information about a learner to identify and make the appropriate enquiry. In some situations the EAR may not be raised by the party who initially believes it is necessary • A pragmatic solution for September 2008*: • Enquiries about results will be made by the centre that made the entry for that unit in line with JCQ guidelines • Home centres would need to inform delivery centres of their view on whether an enquiry is warranted for any of their learners • Delivery centres would need to inform the home centre if they believed an enquiry about results was warranted based on their understanding of performance during teaching

  25. Component awarding body (CAB): • A component awarding body meets the requirements for, and is recognised by, the regulators to award constituent units and qualifications of Diplomas. • Diploma aggregation service: • Previously called Minerva, the Diploma aggregation service will support the awarding of Diplomas to learners. It will be used by exam centres and awarding bodies engaged in the delivery of Diplomas to share data and record learners’ progress towards a Diploma award. Typically, users at exam centres will access the service through a web browser, although they may also access it via an existing management information system (where a link has been established to the service). Larger awarding bodies will link their own systems directly to the service. As well as recording Diploma constituent qualification results against each learner, the service will aggregate these results and apply rules of combination to determine whether sufficient units and results have been gained for a Diploma to be claimed through the service. • Personal, learning and thinking skills (PLTS): • The framework of skills that will equip all young people for successful employment and lifelong learning. PLTS require learners to be: • independent enquirers • creative thinkers • reflective learners • team workers • self-managers • effective participators. Glossary