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1 of x ASE January 2014 Assessment of Practical skills What next? A level and GCSE Stella Paes, Head of Science AQA Thursday 9 th January 2014 Version 3.0
2 of x Setting the context for practical assessment Influences on policy change Teachers high stakes and cheating? Higher educationneed fluency Industryneed fluency and confidence to ‘think on feet ‘ Learned societiesworried about decline in practical lessons DfElistened to pressure groups Ofqual malpractice and AQA influence Ofsted values purposeful practical to stimulate curiosity. Copyright © AQA and its licensors. All rights reserved.
3 of x Maintaining curiosity in science: Ofsted November 2013, No For pupils to achieve well in science, they must not only acquire the necessary knowledge, but also understand its value, enjoy the experience of working scientifically, and sustain their interest in learning it. Pupils in schools need to discover the concepts revealed through observing scientific phenomena and conducting experimental investigations for themselves. Then they are more likely to continue to study science and use that learning for work, for family, and to contribute as informed citizens. The report also reflects and explores the concerns often voiced by employers, higher education, and the scientific community’s professional bodies, that too many school leavers are not well-enough equipped scientifically with practical, investigative and analytical skills. These are vital if young people are to flourish in a technological world and to contribute to economic development. The government’s review of GCSE and A-level qualifications provides a timely opportunity to ensure that the skills of scientific enquiry are assessed as an integral part of these qualifications. Copyright © AQA and its licensors. All rights reserved.
4 of x Supplementary subject guidance for an Outstanding judgement in Science Dec2013 Ofsted Supplementary subject-specific guidance Outstanding (1) Pupils show exceptional independence; they are able to think for themselves and raise their own questions about science knowledge, understanding and scientific enquiry. They are confident and competent in the full range of stage-related practical skills, taking the initiative in planning, carrying out, recording and evaluating their own scientific investigations. Pupils frequently use their scientific knowledge and understanding very effectively in written and verbal explanations, solving challenging problems and reporting scientific findings formally. Appropriate control of several variables, and report their findings clearly using accurate scientific language. (Good judgement) They work constructively with other pupils, demonstrating common understanding in discrete well-focused roles, with all playing a part in successful investigations. Pupils show high levels of originality, imagination and innovation in their understanding and application of their knowledge and skills. Their practical work incorporates a variety of contexts, including fieldwork. Pupils research contemporary issues and understand the impact of science on society. They develop a sense of passion and commitment to science, showing strong application and enthusiasm to learn more through scientific endeavour. Over time, the proportion of male and female pupils that progress to post-16 science studies is similar to the proportions nationally. Copyright © AQA and its licensors. All rights reserved.
5 of x Quality of curriculum grade descriptor Outstanding provision = In secondary schools, sufficient time and high-quality practical resources to teach science through practical investigation and illustration are provided, with the result that students are motivated to study the subject further at 16 and 18. The non-statutory entitlement for all pupils with Key Stage 3 science attainment at Level 6 and above that would benefit from the study of triple science GCSEs is met. Copyright © AQA and its licensors. All rights reserved.
6 of x Why assess practical skills? Copyright © AQA and its licensors. All rights reserved. Is it because being able to work practically is a fundamental skill set for a scientist? Is it because working practically stimulates skills and processes that are considered important? Is it to ensure that students get to do practical work? Is it to stop Heads from closing Prep Rooms and sacking Technicians? Is it because Ofsted judgements are based upon this! Version 3.0
7 of x Teaching and Learning Practical skills Dual objectives with practical skills made explicit More space in curriculum at KS4 for investigation Three strands of practical performance The practical capability of students can, broadly, be divided into three strands: Ability to follow instructions, use instrumentation, apparatus and materials effectively and safely, observe, collect data and take measurements Ability to research, plan, carry out and report on an investigation Ability to analyse and evaluate procedures, data and conclusions. Copyright © AQA and its licensors. All rights reserved.
8 of x How to Assess Practical skills? Copyright © AQA and its licensors. All rights reserved. indirect assessment in written papers of procedural understanding, concepts of evidence and the interpretations and evaluation of experimental results – Select apparatus to conduct a procedure? – Recognise variability and unreliability? – Report on an investigation effectively? direct assessment by teachers of practical performance. Version 3.0
9 of x What competences can be assessed? Possibilities when carrying out a titration are; Can the candidate take an accurate reading of the volume of liquid in a burette? Can the candidate conduct a titration? Does the candidate know when it is appropriate to conduct a titration? Can the candidate interpret the results from a titration and recognise their significance? Copyright © AQA and its licensors. All rights reserved. Direct or indirect?
10 of x Volumetric analysis Making up a standard solution Diluting a solution quantitatively Measuring the concentration of a solution by titration (acid- base and redox). Using a titration to determine a formula, or an equation, or to answer some another chemical question Copyright © AQA and its licensors. All rights reserved.
11 of x Competences demonstrated Working out the quantities needed for a specified standard solution/dilution/titration Selecting/justifying an appropriate sequence of stages to gather the data needed to solve a given problem by titration. Explaining the accuracy and limitations of volumetric instruments. Interpreting, by calculation, data from volumetric analyses to answer chemical questions. Copyright © AQA and its licensors. All rights reserved.
12 of x Direct assessment by the teacher? Demonstrating correct technique when using volumetric glassware. Making and recording measurements with appropriate precision that give a result which is within an acceptable range. Using class data to estimate uncertainty in results Copyright © AQA and its licensors. All rights reserved.
13 of x Past A level Chemistry question Copyright © AQA and its licensors. All rights reserved.
14 of x 1.Following instructions Success in this element is described by: the amount of support provided by the teacher or others, from almost working alongside the student to virtually no support at all beyond issuing the instructions the ability to translate instructions into practice and manage a sequence of steps, from little ability to working correctly through them 2. Using instrumentation, apparatus and materials Success in this element is described by: the amount of support provided by the teacher or others, from almost working alongside the student to virtually no support at all the ability to manage techniques and procedures methodically in sequence and in combination, demonstrating skills, knowledge and understanding in the techniques and procedures used the quality of the outcome, from inadequate results to those that would be expected 3. Working safely Success in this element is described by: knowledge and understanding of hazards and hazard information, from that which is provided from instructions to independent identification the level of personal responsibility taken to remain safe, from an inconsistent to a consistent approach 4. Observing, measuring and recording Success in this element is described by: the ability to make observations and measurements, from those lacking in accuracy or detail to ones which are consistently accurate and detailed the quality of outcome of the experimental or investigative procedure, from limited results which would barely support an expected conclusion to ones which would provide good evidence of support 5. Carrying out and reporting on investigative activities Success in this element is described by: the quality of investigative design and execution, from taking limited account of equipment choice and methodology to taking full account, recognising the value of each part of the process and how it contributes to the whole the ability to communicate the investigative procedure employed, from providing general outlines to describing full details such that the investigative procedure is reproducible Apply the practical competences Copyright © AQA and its licensors. All rights reserved. 14
15 of x A Clear line of sight Progressive development of skills Mathematical Practical Enquiry Written communication Tracking progress using the threads Supports assessment for learning KS3 GCSE A level
16 of x Version 2.0 Copyright © AQA and its licensors. All rights reserved. Progression in scientific observation skills Progression in making meaning from scientific observations Progression in evaluating scientific observations These three cylinders stretch up inside the trunk and are within every branch of science A tree model for thinking about learning in science Trunk = scientific body of knowledge
17 of x Copyright © AQA and its licensors. All rights reserved.
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