Holistic Assessment: What is it and how do we do it?
Assessment is a fundamental part of vocational education. It allows Assessors to make judgements on their learner’s knowledge, skills and understanding. It also enables them to identify strengths and weaknesses, tailor lessons to suit their individual needs and track overall progress. Holistic assessment takes this to a whole new level.
In this article, we will explain what holistic assessment is, explore its advantages, and offer some advice on how to do it well.
What is Holistic Assessment
Holistic Assessment is gathering evidence for several assessment criteria in multiple units during a single assessment.
Holistic assessment is an approach to evaluating student learning across a number of different parts of their course. It goes beyond assessing students solely based on a limited number of assessment criteria within a single piece of learning. Holistic assessment is not a new feature of education. I am sure you experienced holistic assessment techniques when you were at school without even realising it.
Cast your mind back to when you were at school. Easier for some of us than others. Now think about your favourite lesson. You will remember at the end of each term you would be tested in some way on everything you had learnt in that subject during that term. However, come the end of the year you would have another test where the teacher would test you on all of the things you had learnt not just your recent learning.
The Benefits of Holistic Assessment for the Learner
- They have to do fewer assessments to complete their course
- Course progression is usually faster
- Work produced is generally of a higher standard
The Benefits of Holistic Assessment for the Assessor
The benefits of Holistic Assessment for the learner are often exactly the same as for the assessor. Having learners progress through the course quickly by producing high-quality work is every assessor‘s utopia.
- You will have far fewer assessments to manage
- Your learners are more engaged
- Work time can be better managed and more productive.
I hope this article has given you a good basic understanding of Holistic Assessment. For an in-depth understanding of holistic assessment, take a look at our hugely popular and industry leading 1-hour CPD course: the Award in Holistic Assessment in Vocational Education. It’s all online and exclusive to Brooks and Kirk, teaching you not only what holistic assessment is, but how to plan and carry out an effective holistic assessment, and more. Enrol now for just £45. Upon completion, you will have completed 1 hour of verified CPD for your record and you will receive a certificate to show this.
Steve is a Chartered Manager and a Fellow of the Chartered Management Institute.
He provides Educational Consultancy to the 19+ sector as well as being an Assessor, IQA, EPA and Digital Marketing Professional. When not doing any of these he finds time, every now and then, to write blogs and articles.