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State Examinations and Accredited Grades for Leaving Certificate 2021 - main points from JMB

State Examinations and Accredited Grades for Leaving Certificate 2021 - main points from JMB
04-March-21
State Examinations and Accredited Grades for Leaving Certificate 2021 - main points from JMB
The Department has now issued the final version of A Guide to State Examinations and Accredited Grades for Leaving Certificate 2021 which is available from www.gov.ie/leavingcertificate
Insofar as possible, during this period, teachers should maintain the modes of assessment and feedback that are familiar to students and that are consistent with the methodologies and approach that they would normally adopt at this stage of the year.
The Guide, under Section 6.5, sets out advice on the formative and summative assessment approaches that may be taken by teachers and schools during the period following the return to classes for Leaving Certificate students.
Where extra assessment is deemed necessary for the estimated mark process, in-class teacher-designed tests, where used, should be of no more than one lesson in duration (maximum one hour).
A maximum of three class tests may be administered up to 14 May 2021. Examples of tests that may be administered are written, oral, aural or practical tests.
Significantly, Section 6.6 of the document provides guidance on what assessments should not be used as sources of information in arriving at teachers’ estimated marks under the accredited grades process.
Information from the following should not be used: Self or peer-assessed work for which there is no oversight or role for the teacher in assessing the work completed. Short written class tests of less than one class period that assess a limited aspect of learning, for example, spelling or vocabulary tests.
Mock examinations (i.e., examinations involving full class groups sitting written examinations under conditions that mirror those of the certificate examinations) are neither required nor recommended for use as evidence for the Accredited Grades process.
The rationale for not including mock examinations as sources of evidence are threefold:
(a) Erosion of valuable tuition time: The period following the return to in-school teaching and learning should be used to maximise opportunities for teaching and learning with students, and mock examinations typically utilise significant tranches of school time to implement.
(b) Threats to validity: Mock examinations can suffer from poor replicability in terms of their predictive value in relation to eventual Leaving Certificate outcomes as commercially produced papers are frequently shared by students in advance and externally marked answer papers do not typically carry auditable quality assurance guarantees in line with SEC standards.
(c) Readjustment of LC Examination Papers This year’s Leaving Certificate written papers are being significantly adjusted in terms of their answering requirements and question choice, and such modifications would require to be made to mock exam papers if they are to support a valid preparatory experience to students undertaking them. Such modifications would require having knowledge of adjusted sample papers which have not been issued by SEC in respect of this year’s Leaving Certificate examination.
While the provision of mock examinations as a practice for the experience of answering Leaving Certificate written papers is not expressly prohibited by the Department, it is recommended that school management gives serious consideration to their decisions around mock exam provision in 2021 and the recommendations at Section 6.6 of the Guide document.
The Department has now issued the final version of A Guide to State Examinations and Accredited Grades for Leaving Certificate 2021 which is available from www.gov.ie/leavingcertificate
Insofar as possible, during this period, teachers should maintain the modes of assessment and feedback that are familiar to students and that are consistent with the methodologies and approach that they would normally adopt at this stage of the year.
The Guide, under Section 6.5, sets out advice on the formative and summative assessment approaches that may be taken by teachers and schools during the period following the return to classes for Leaving Certificate students.
Where extra assessment is deemed necessary for the estimated mark process, in-class teacher-designed tests, where used, should be of no more than one lesson in duration (maximum one hour).
A maximum of three class tests may be administered up to 14 May 2021. Examples of tests that may be administered are written, oral, aural or practical tests.
Significantly, Section 6.6 of the document provides guidance on what assessments should not be used as sources of information in arriving at teachers’ estimated marks under the accredited grades process.
Information from the following should not be used: Self or peer-assessed work for which there is no oversight or role for the teacher in assessing the work completed. Short written class tests of less than one class period that assess a limited aspect of learning, for example, spelling or vocabulary tests.
Mock examinations (i.e., examinations involving full class groups sitting written examinations under conditions that mirror those of the certificate examinations) are neither required nor recommended for use as evidence for the Accredited Grades process.
The rationale for not including mock examinations as sources of evidence are threefold:
(a) Erosion of valuable tuition time: The period following the return to in-school teaching and learning should be used to maximise opportunities for teaching and learning with students, and mock examinations typically utilise significant tranches of school time to implement.
(b) Threats to validity: Mock examinations can suffer from poor replicability in terms of their predictive value in relation to eventual Leaving Certificate outcomes as commercially produced papers are frequently shared by students in advance and externally marked answer papers do not typically carry auditable quality assurance guarantees in line with SEC standards.
(c) Readjustment of LC Examination Papers This year’s Leaving Certificate written papers are being significantly adjusted in terms of their answering requirements and question choice, and such modifications would require to be made to mock exam papers if they are to support a valid preparatory experience to students undertaking them. Such modifications would require having knowledge of adjusted sample papers which have not been issued by SEC in respect of this year’s Leaving Certificate examination.
While the provision of mock examinations as a practice for the experience of answering Leaving Certificate written papers is not expressly prohibited by the Department, it is recommended that school management gives serious consideration to their decisions around mock exam provision in 2021 and the recommendations at Section 6.6 of the Guide document.
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