6 Top Tips for Newly Qualified Assessors
It’s been a long road. You’ve demonstrated your occupational competence. You’ve completed your course. Now you’re ready to keep an eye on those learners. First of all, good job on getting qualified! You’ve entered into a career that is both challenging and rewarding. You’ve shown you’re an industry expert and now it’s time to demonstrate your ability as an Assessor. By following our advice we guarantee you’ll build confidence and competence with our tips for newly qualified Assessors.
6 Top Tips for Newly Qualified Assessors
1) Shadow experienced assessors
There’s no better way to pick up the tricks of the trade than to see others at work. Shadowing an experienced Assessor is a great way to see what you’ve learned in action. You may learn techniques to deal with obstacles, and consider how your newfound skills might translate in a real assessment setting. When working with a long-time Assessor, you also have the chance to ask questions as you go.
However, a shadowing placement is usually unpaid, unless it’s employer-funded. So, you might find you’ll be out of pocket for the time you’re taking notes from a practiced Assessor. Nontheless, the experience you gain will be invaluable and will look great on a CV if you’re still looking for a paid position.
2) Make sure you know your National Occupational Standards
Of course, it’s important your industry knowledge is as sharp as your assessment skills. According to gov.uk, “A National Occupational Standard (NOS) is a document that describes the knowledge, skills and understanding an individual needs to be competent at a job.” These are used to assess NVQ learners.
As an NVQ Assessor, you’ll need to know what the NOS criteria are for the qualification(s) you’re assessing. These will be very specific to your industry and to the course being taken. Being up to date with these shows you’re prepared to assess within your field and that your knowledge of assessment within your industry is current.
All NOS documents can be found at UK Standards. You can use the finder tool here.
3) Gain experience in End-Point Assessment
The role of an End-Point Assessor differs from what we would call a ‘traditional’ assessor. It’s a relatively new role in the assessment world that has appeared since the apprenticeship reform in 2017. Instead of taking a learner through the NVQ qualification, the End-Point Assessor holds a series of assessments for an Apprentice to complete right at the end of their Apprenticeship.
If this is a role you’re interested in, take a look at our Award in End-Point Assessment Principles and Practice. This course is exclusive to us at Brooks and Kirk, is all online, and counts for 6 hours of verified CPD. It’s definitely worth getting yourself involved with if you feel End-Point Assessing could be a route for you!
4) Promote yourself
Now your role has changed, you want to make sure everyone knows. Update your social media, CV, and business cards. If you’re not using LinkedIn – you should be! It’s the perfect platform for online networking, identifying job opportunities, and communicating with others in the field of assessment.
Some of the best LinkedIn groups for NVQ Assessors include:
- Assessor Training Jobs, News and Courses
- Assessor & IQA Group
- NVQ & Apprenticeship Assessors looking for work
- RQF/QCF/NVQ Assessors, IQAs and EQAs
5) Stay ahead in your vocational knowledge
Even after you’ve qualified as an Assessor, you’ll find the landscape of your industry will always be changing. Standards change, best practice changes, and new ways of doing things come into play. It’s important your vocational knowledge always stays current.
To stay ahead of changes and stay occupationally competent, you should be actively making efforts to continue your professional development (CPD). Some of the ways you can do this are:
- Subscribe to industry journals
- Join relevant networks online and in the real world
- Shadow classes
- Keep on top of the latest NOS.
6) Take the next step in your professional development
There are qualifications above and beyond CAVA. One qualification that we would recommend alongside your CAVA is the Level 3 Award in Education and Training. This qualification replaced a qualification that was commonly known as the ‘PTLLS’ Award.
The Level 3 Award in Education and Training is the first step towards becoming a teacher in adult education. When working with adults, you don’t need a PGCE (required for teaching children). Instead, you can take the AET (Level 3 Award in Education and Training) to get your foot in the door at Further Education colleges and other adult learning institutions.
More tips for newly qualified assessors
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.