Assessment Handbook

The assessment of students’ work is undertaken in the first instance by a teacher of Longford College of Further Education. It is then subject to the Internal Verification and External Authentication processes before finally being ratified by the Results Approval Panel (each of these processes refers to a Quality Assurance process which has been approved and is monitored by QQI). Each module is assessed separately. This system enables students to hold credits in the event of having to interrupt their course of study. This means that where a student has to take leave from their studies for a period of time due to ill health, family or personal matters the student retains the credits gained for those modules which have been successfully completed, assessed and ratified.

Students with additional support needs in relation to assessment are required to notify their teacher immediately upon starting their course so that appropriate measures can be implemented. An up to date psychologist report must be presented to the college upon registeration.

To ascertain that students meet the standards agreed with QQI in order to qualify for the award for their programme/module.
To provide a mechanism through which students are given feedback on their learning.
For teachers and the College to evaluate the efficacy of the Longford College of Further Education teaching model in delivering knowledge and in facilitating the development of skills and professional attitude.

For legal and ethical reasons it is important that information concerning an agency and the people who live and work there, be used respectfully and with care, within the context of assignments.
To ensure anonymity, students are required to change the names of their organisations and the names of the service users in their assignments so that identification of the same is not possible. You will be advised on individual requirements for assignments during lessons.
Students are encouraged to seek advice from supervisors, and/or teachers concerning permission with regard to the use of information about service-users in their assignments.

It is the responsibility of the student to familiarise themselves with all information relating to assessment.

Submission of Assignments
Students are required to submit assignments with an assignment cover sheet and brief. Typed assessments are preferable but handwritten assessments will be accepted. All assessments should be presented on white A4 size paper and bound with a cover and spine. Loose pages will not be accepted. When typed, assessments should be double-spaced or 1.5 spaced and in font size 12.
All submissions must be signed for by the student and submitted to the teacher in class time. Projects will only be accepted in that modules class time.
All students are advised to keep a copy of their work, as work submitted to the College will not be returned until the assessment procedure is fully completed..

Skills Demonstrations
Skills demonstrations will be scheduled in class time (where possible). Advance notice will be given to students. Failure to attend a timetabled skills demonstration will require a medical certificate in order to facilitate a repeat.

Assessment Process
Longford College of Further Education implements carefully designed assessment procedures for the assessment of modules. This process is governed by the QQI agreed policy and procedures for the Fair and Consistent Assessment of Learners. These ensure that each student’s work is considered on its own merit, and is marked to the same standard and at the appropriate level agreed with the accrediting body. Marks are awarded for learning that has a balance, appropriate to the module, between theory and practical application.

Students’ work is assessed against specific criteria from a standardised marking scheme, which has been designed in accordance with the learning outcomes of the associated module. These are clearly stated in the learning materials at the beginning of each module and in the module descriptors. This approach ensures that although different teachers mark assignments, each assignment is marked in exactly the same way. To verify the assessment process, and to ensure that the assessment procedures meet the standard required by the accrediting body, each student assessment is subject to the Internal Verification and External Authentication processes

Plagiarism, which is the copying of another person’s writings or works or ideas in any assignment, essay, project, or other exercise, that forms part of the requirements for an academic programme where such copying is either unauthorised by the copyright owner or unacknowledged in the assignment, essay, project, or other exercise is considered to be an infringement of LCFE assessment regulations. SCFE uses a plagiarism programme to detect occurrences of plagiarism and the following procedures will apply when there is evidence of such;

  1.  First offence: The learner is given an opportunity to re-submit the work within 5 calendar days.
  2.  Second offence: The work is not accepted.
  3.  If two students hand up the same work then neither piece of work will be accepted and both will be given the opportunity to re-submit within 5 calendar days.

Feedback on Assignments
Written feedback will be given to students on assignments. A draft deadline will be included on the assignment brief. Students will be given an opportunity to submit a draft copy of their assignment to their tutor before that date to receive written feedback. As with late submission, exceptional circumstances will be taken into consideration. Once an assignment is submitted it cannot be given back to the student to improve their grade and subsequently re-submitted. Feedback will be given in order for them to improve in their next assignment.

Security and Storage of Assessment related materials
For the duration of their studies with the College, work submitted by learners for assessment is stored  securely  by  the  Programme  Coordinator.  On  conclusion  of the Results  Approval  Panel meeting hardcopies of all assessments and related materials, which have been ratified by the panel, will be maintained for collection. Materials pertaining to any learner results which have been appealed will be retained until the completion of the College and QQI appeals process timeframes. Records of all modules successfully completed by learners, and grades awarded are maintained indefinitely by the College in secure electronic files.

In adverse personal circumstances, or where a student experiences a period of ill health, students may apply for a two-week extension for submission of an assignment.
The procedures for the late submission of an assignment are as follows:

  1. In the first instance the request must be discussed with your teacher. Pending agreement with your teacher, an exceptional circumstance form must be completed in full by the student and forwarded to their teacher with a late submission form. Students are supplied with a copy of the exceptional circumstance form by their teacher. Where the student is applying for a late submission due to ill-health, a medical certificate is required and must be attached to the exceptional circumstance form.

*Please  note  that  request  for  extension  of  deadline  must  be  received  before  the  original assignment deadline.

Should a further two week extension be needed, the student should apply directly to the Principal and a decision will be made at that point whether to grant the extension.

The grading scheme used by the College in relation to QQI Level 5 & Level 6 courses is as follows:

80-100% Distinction
65-79% Merit
50-64% Pass
0-49% Unsuccessful

Any work handed in past the assignment deadline without an extension, or work handed in after the extension deadline will not be accepted for the May Assessment period and will be held and submitted during the next QQI assessment period in September. A €50 charge will apply to cover such costs as administration and external authentication.
Resubmitted assignments may not be ratified by the Results Approval Panel until the following year.

Module results can also be appealed to QQI. This option is available only after the internal appeals process has been completed and where the student is dissatisfied with the outcome of the internal appeals process.
In this instance QQI will check that the providers assessment policy and procedures have been implemented  appropriately  in relation  to  the  work  being  appealed,  i.e.  Learners  appeal  the outcome of the provider’s assessment and appeals process only;  not the assessment result. There is a cost of €40 per module for such appeals, payable by the student. Appeals to QQI should be directed through LCFE.