Feedback for the future
Ros Ollin's and Elaine Smith's book is a "complete guide to the GNVQplaning and assessment units". The book's honest introduction sets the style for the body of the work which is concise and infinitely understandable. There is an excellent overview of the GNVQ concept and the book then deals with each aspect of the GPA units - the planning, delivery, assessment and evaluation of GNVQs and ends with a consideration of the future development of GNVQs.
The text is enhanced by examples, often in graphical form, of assessment activity plans, schemes of work, action plans, tracking sheets, feedback sheets and timetables.
There is sensible advice, such as allowing time for practice and assimilation before assessing, and the dangers are pointed out with more good advice on how to overcome them. Teachers are warned that the mass of paper recording requirements can lead them to lose sight of the learning involved and are encouraged to reassess how they do things.
The authors discuss at length how to integrate the key skills and suggest that they provide opportunities for teachers to extend their teaching strategies and their guidance to students. It shows how grading is integrated with assessment and how opportunities for grading can be exploited.
The section on induction for students includes initial assessment and suggests and compares methods for carrying this out. There is a useful explanation of accreditation of prior achievement as it applies to GNVQ students and the authors suggest a procedure for this.
The book is illustrated with examples from a variety of vocational areas and sample assessment activity plans are included. The criteria for assessment are emphasised - authenticity, validity, sufficiency - and good sound advice is given.
How to ensure consistency and standardisation is another area dealt with and the book concludes with a look at the future of GNVQs. It is essential reading for those about to become involved in GNVQ delivery and assessment and would be a valuable text for those already involved.