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Introducing Unit Specifications and Unit Assessment Support Packs Biology National 3, 4 and 5.

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Presentation on theme: "Introducing Unit Specifications and Unit Assessment Support Packs Biology National 3, 4 and 5."— Presentation transcript:


2 Introducing Unit Specifications and Unit Assessment Support Packs Biology National 3, 4 and 5

3 Unit Assessment Assessments can be designed to provide evidence across more than one Unit or Outcome – combined assessments Flexible and open Evidence Requirements in Units Greater range of techniques and methodologies for assessment – encouraged through Unit assessment support packages More opportunities to gather naturally occurring evidence – assessment as part of learning and teaching

4 Unit Structure National 3National 4National 5 Cell Biology Multicellular Organisms Life on Earth Added Value Unit: Biology Assignment (National 4)

5 Key points: Biology Units standards remain the same have a hierarchical Unit structure that provide progression from National 3 to National 5, then articulate with Higher Biology and Higher Human Biology All Units from N3 to AH in all Sciences have (almost) same Outcomes and Assessment Standards (apart from N4 AV Unit); differentiation is through the evidence requirements added value assessment increases personalisation and choice in the Biology assignment at National 4

6 Outcome 1 The learner will: Apply skills of scientific inquiry and draw on knowledge and understanding of the key areas of this Unit to carry out an experiment / practical investigation by: 1.1Planning an experiment / practical investigation 1.2Following procedures safely 1.3Making and recording observations / measurements accurately 1.4Presenting results in an appropriate format 1.5Drawing valid conclusions 1.6Evaluating experimental procedures

7 Outcome 2 The learner will: Draw on knowledge and understanding of the key areas of this Unit and apply scientific skills by: 2.1 Making accurate statements 2.2Describing an application 2.3Describing a biological issue in terms of the effect on the environment / society 2.4Solving problems

8 Unit Specifications Assessment Standards and Evidence Requirements: Assessors should use their professional judgement, subject knowledge and experience, and understanding of their learners, to determine the most appropriate ways to generate evidence and the conditions and contexts in which they are used. Key Areas are listed for each Unit Evidence can be drawn from a variety of sources and presented in a variety of formats. Evidence may be presented for individual Outcomes or gathered for the Unit as a whole, through combining assessment holistically in a single event. Evidence requirements for the Assessment standards…..

9 Assessment StandardEvidence required 1.1 Planning an experiment/practical investigationThe plan should include: an aim a dependent and independent variable key variables to be kept constant measurements/observations to be made the resources the method including health and safety considerations 1.3 Making and recording observations/measurements accurately Units used appropriately 1.4 Presenting results in an appropriate formatOne format per Unit from: table, line graph, chart, key, diagram, flow chart, summary or other appropriate format 1.5 Drawing a valid conclusionInclude reference to aim 1.6 Evaluating experimental proceduresSuggest an improvement with justification 2.1 Making accurate statementsOne for each Key Area 2.3 Describing a biological issue in terms of the effect on the environment / society The description should include the biology of the issue 2.4 Solving problemsOne of each per Unit: make generalisations/predictions select information process information, including calculations, as appropriate analyse information

10 Transfer of evidence across Units Since the Outcomes and Assessment Standards are the same for all Units of the Course, evidence for Outcome 1 and Assessment Standards 2.2, 2.3 and 2.4 for one Unit in this Course can be used as evidence of the achievement of Outcome 1 and Assessment Standards 2.2, 2.3 and 2.4 in the other Units of this Course. The Units differ only by context.

11 Unit Assessment Support Packages - purpose UASPs can be used to: Assess your candidates Adapt for your own assessment programmes Help you develop your own assessments

12 UASPs – key features Valid from August 2013 Designed to encourage professional judgement Provide broad-based tasks – allow assessors to choose appropriate context and forms of evidence Show range of approaches to generating assessment evidence Give information on the type of evidence which could be gathered and how this is to be judged against Assessment Standards

13 Biology UASPs Package 1 Unit by Unit approach for N3, for N4 and for N5 (9 in total) – Task 1: Outcome 1, – Task 2 Ass.St. 2.2 & 2.3, – Task 3 questions on Ass.St. 2.1 & 2.4 Package 2 Combined across the 3 Units at N3, at N4 & at N5 (3 in total) – Assessment activity 1: Outcome 1 & Ass.St. 2.2 & 2.3 – Assessment activity 2: questions covering Ass.St. 2.1 Package 3 Portfolio approach across the 3 Units at N3, at N4 & at N5 (3 in total)

14 National 4 Added Value Unit Makes the Course more than the sum of its parts Builds on current Course assessment and Group Award approaches Defined as breadth, challenge and/or application as outlined in Building the Curriculum 5 May involve accumulation, assimilation, integration and/or application of skills, knowledge and understanding Controlled assessment –setting conducting and marking

15 N4 AV Unit: Biology Assignment This Unit is a mandatory Unit of the National 4 Biology Course and is also available as a free- standing Unit. Learners will investigate a topical issue in biology, using knowledge and skills selected from Cell Biology/Multicellular Organisms/Life on Earth key areas. Internally marked pass or fail

16 Outcome 1 (only) Apply skills and knowledge to investigate a topical issue in biology and its impact on society/the environment by: 1.1 Choosing, with justification, a relevant issue in biology 1.2 Researching the issue 1.3 Presenting appropriate information/data 1.4 Explaining the impact, in terms of the biology involved 1.5 Communicating the findings of the investigation

17 N5 Internal Assessment of Course Components Controlled assessment is SQAs approach to developing assessments (setting), the conditions of assessment (conducting), and marking assessments (marking). SQA is introducing controlled assessment for non-question paper components of the Added Value Unit and new National Courses at National 5, Higher and Advanced Higher.

18 eg. Assessment Standard 2.1 (Making accurate statements) Controlled assessment This performance is: set by centres within SQA guidelines conducted under a high degree of supervision and control Evidence will be internally marked by centre staff in line with SQA marking instructions. Marking will be quality assured by SQA. The performance will be recorded.

19 Moving on Workshop 1 and 2 will give you the opportunity to look at the Unit Specifications and Unit Assessment Support Packages in detail.


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