4 Dec 2020

New sparqs' resource: course rep briefing on assessment

As a result of COVID-19 and the move to blended learning, many institutions have changed the way that they assess students; from removal of exams completely and replacement with summative assessment, to changes in practical demonstrations and the introduction of online exams.

Through conversations with students’ association staff and officers, there were some concerns that students were perhaps not always being kept fully informed on decisions being made by institutions about changes to assessments. As a result, extra worry and pressure could be put on students at an already stressful time.

To try and resolve some of the issues before they become problems we have produced a resource on assessment in the format of a briefing note for course reps, to help them begin the conversations with students and staff about the upcoming assessment period.

This resource gives some background to the types of changes to assessment that may have taken place. It also provides both a list of useful prompt questions for course reps to ask students and a list of the questions course reps may be getting asked by students.

The resource is supported by our suggested questions for course reps COVID-19 edition, and also our Toolkit for Effective Learner Engagement, developed in partnership with Education Scotland.

We have sent the briefing note out to all course reps that have completed course rep training delivered by sparqs, and we would encourage all students’ associations to send this on to any course reps who did not attend training, and to all course reps where institutions have delivered their own training.

For further information, or if you have an queries about the resource, or the work sparqs is doing around direct communications to course reps, please contact Denise McCaig, Development Consultant – denise.mccaig@sparqs.ac.uk.

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