Assessment and Grading Policy

Status


Last reviewed
Thu, 03 September 2015

The Assessment and Grading Policy establishes a framework for development and implementation of learning strategies; validation of marking and assessment; grading of assessments; and subdivision of grades.

Public
visibility
Approved on: 14 Oct 2013
Amended on: 21 Sep 2015
Review cycle: 3 Years
Owned by

Learning, Teaching and Research Committee

Approved by

Academic Board

Policy Contact: 
Secretary, Learning Teaching and Research Committee
Purpose: 

The Assessment and Grading Policy establishes a framework for development and implementation of learning strategies; validation of marking and assessment; grading of assessments; and subdivision of grades.

Scope: 

This policy applies to all Higher Education Faculty and Adjunct Faculty of the College.

Statement: 

Education and Assessment Systems

Overview of Teaching Methods

The College espouses a holistic method of education and provides an environment where academic learning, spiritual development and service occur together. Formal education methods include: lectures and interactive sessions, set and in-class readings, research, preparation of papers and oral presentations, video viewing, practical experiences, field education, group work, personal and group reflection, and study for examinations and tests. The educational methods used depend on the nature and level of courses. Informal learning takes place through dialogue and discussion, worship and prayer, and interaction during various opportunities to serve one another and the community.

Development and implementation of learning strategies for accredited courses

It is the responsibility of the Dean of Faculty, Course Coordinators, Faculty and the Learning Teaching and Research Committee to seek advice on the learning and assessment strategies for each accredited course offered within the College, and to implement such strategies.

It is the responsibility of the Unit Coordinators to oversee the review and updating of all units prior to delivery, with particular reference to delivery and assessment strategies. In some cases this responsibility is delegated to, or shared with, other Faculty, particularly where another Faculty member is the Coordinator of a particular course or set of units.

It is the responsibility of the Quality Processes Officer to ensure that all units due for delivery are prepared ready for delivery according to College processes.

It is a responsibility of the Faculty to develop, deliver and review teaching and assessment strategies to ensure that they are relevant, contemporary and are an appropriate response to the students, the College and regulatory requirements.

Demands of a Unit

The College has the following demands for its units expressed as demand hours.

  • AQF 5 - 4000 research words or equivalent.
  • AQF 6 - 4500 research words or equivalent.
  • AQF 7 - 5000 research words or equivalent.
  • AQF 8 - 5000 to 6000 research words or equivalent.
  • AQF 9 - 6000 research words or equivalent for a 6 credit point unit, 10,000 research words or equivalent for a 12 credit point unit.

Total demand hours for a standard unit (6 credit points) = 140 to 160 hours.

  • 70 to 80 demand hours in completing assessment tasks.
  • 70 to 80 hours completing non-assessable tasks (contact time, reading, research).

 

AQF Level Research Words Reflective Words Oral Examination or
Class Presentation Minutes
Reading Pages Artwork
5 10 dh / 500 10 dh / 1000 10 dh  /15 10 dh / 100 7dh/small piece
10dh/medium piece
15dh/large piece
6 10 dh / 550 10 dh / 1100 10 dh / 20 10 dh / 110 7dh/small piece
10dh/medium piece
15dh/large piece
7 10 dh / 600 10 dh / 1200 10 dh / 25 10 dh / 120 7dh/small piece
10dh/medium piece
15dh/large piece
8 10 dh /625 10 dh / 1250 10 dh / 25 10 dh / 125 7dh/small piece
10dh/medium piece
15dh/large piece
9 10 dh / 780 10 dh / 1460 10 dh / 27 10 dh /156  

 

Validation of assessment

The validation of assessment will occur when a unit is prepared for delivery through the unit co-ordinator approving the delivery to be released.

Marking and Assessment

It shall be the responsibility of the Academic in Charge or Unit Co-ordinator who is in attendance at the first class of delivery of any unit of study to undertake the following tasks:-

  • review the unit outline with students. This may involve more that one level of study;
  • explain to students that assessment tasks are designed to test each student’s learning against the learning objectives of the unit;
  • ensure students understand the learning objectives and assessment requirements of the unit;
  • answer any questions students may have with respect to the learning objectives, assessment requirements and marking rubrics, and
  • advise students how the lecturer/course coordinator may be contacted if additional advice or assistance is required.

Grading of Assessments

The marker shall be responsible to record a numerical mark for each assessment task for each unit of study where appropriate, to facilitate the calculation of an overall cumulative mark. The Marker shall be responsible to record each numerical grade assigned in the Moodle gradebook for the unit.

Grading will be based on criterion referenced assessment thus a rubric or other form of criteria must be made availabel to thes tudents at the start of the unit delivery. The marker shall refer to the Colleges Subdivision of Grades Table to assist with the design of assessment criteria. The following list, shall for the time being, represent the subdivision of grades for the College.

The marker shall be responsible to record either a pass or fail for a non-graded assessment task where appropriate, to facilitate the calculation of overall success in the unit.

The marker shall provide easily understood feedback enabling the student to enhance their learning, referencing the assignment criteria.

Subdivision of Grades

The following grading system gives an overall outline of the assessment criteria generally used for all units.

High Distinction: 85-100%

An extremely high level of expertise/competence in demonstrating understanding of the topic, comprehension of the concepts involved, and practical and/or presentation skills.

Distinction: 75-84%

A high level of expertise/competence in demonstrating understanding of the topic, comprehension of the concepts involved, and practical and/or presentation skills.

Credit: 65-74%

A commendable level of expertise/competence in demonstrating understanding of the topic, comprehension of the concepts involved, and practical and/or presentation skills.

Pass (P): 50-64%

An adequate level of expertise/competence in demonstrating understanding of the topic, comprehension of the concepts involved, and practical and/or presentation skills.

Fail: 0-49%

An inadequate level of expertise/competence in demonstrating understanding of the topic, comprehension of the concepts involved, and practical and/or presentation skills.

The Academic Standards and Risk Committee shall be responsible to consider the distribution of grades awarded, and shall consider the extent to which the grades assigned reflects the College’s expected distribution of grades, as tabled below:-

Table of Expected Distribution of Grades

Percentage Expected Distribution of Grades
85-100% 5-10%
75-84% 20-25%
65-74% 30-40%
50-64% 25-35%
Less than 50% 5-15%

The Table of Expected Distribution of Grades shall be a guide only to query unusual patterns of marking, and not an imposition upon the marker to conform. Different groups of students and units of study requiring different learning outcomes shall be expected to result in different grade distributions.
Lecturers involved in marking and assessment tasks shall be responsible to ensure that rapid and helpful feedback is provided to the students.

CONTENT AND ARGUMENT

The content of any assessment task shall generally account for 80% of the total marks available, and markers shall be expected to consider the following criteria when marking any assessment task:-

  • Is the work clearly focussed on the topic?
  • Has the topic been addressed adequately?
  • Have the basic facts been covered?
  • Have the central issues been recognised and addressed?
  • Is a sound biblical perspective presented?
  • Has a clear and logical argument/discussion been developed?
  • Is there adequate discussion and analysis?
  • Is there evidence of adequate background reading?
  • Is there evidence of critical thinking?

PRESENTATION OF MATERIAL

The presentation of material in any assessment task shall generally account for 10% of the total marks available, and markers shall be expected to consider the following criteria when marking any assessment task:-

  • Is the form, style and language clear and appropriate?
  • Is the material well-organised?
  • How effectively does the assignment communicate?

CONVENTIONS

The conventions prescribed by the College with respect to the preparation and presentation of any assessment task shall generally account for 10% of the total marks available, and markers shall be expected to consider the following criteria when marking any assessment task:-

  • Is the format appropriate to the unit?
  • How well is the work referenced?
  • Is there adequate acknowledgement of sources?
  • Is the bibliography relevant and adequate?

LEVELS OF STUDY

Markers shall be responsible to be aware of the level at which students are studying (Higher Education, and within that Degree (AQF level 5, 6, 7) or Graduate (AQF level 8) or Masters (AQF level 9) award and to take account of the academic requirements expected at that level of study.