Essentially, the purpose of assessment and reporting at this stage of education is to support learning. This short course supports a wide variety of approaches to assessment. Some learning outcomes lend themselves to once-off assessment, others to assessment on an ongoing basis as students engage in different learning activities such as discussing, explaining, presenting, planning, taking action and, at an appropriate level, finding out information. In these contexts, students with their teachers and peers reflect upon and make judgements about their own and others’ learning by looking at the quality of particular pieces of work (according to their ability). They plan the next steps in their learning, based on feedback they give and receive. Ongoing assessment can support the student in their learning journey and in preparing for the Classroom-Based Assessment related to this short course.
It is envisaged that students will provide evidence of their learning in a variety of ways, including digital media, audio recordings and written pieces.
Assessment is most effective when it moves beyond marks and grades and reporting focuses not just on how the student has done in the past but on the next steps for further learning. Student progress and achievement in short courses, both in ongoing assessments and in the specific Classroom-Based Assessment relating to this short course will be communicated to parents in interim reporting and in the Junior Cycle Profile of Achievement (JCPA). To support teachers and schools, an Assessment Toolkit is available online. The Assessment Toolkit will include learning, teaching, assessment and reporting support material.