The purpose of assessment is to reinforce the learning objectives so all assessment tasks are aligned with the learning outcomes.
As a sessional staff member, you are not required to design or set assessment tasks. You will, however, most likely be required to assess student work either directly in class or written assignments.
Some key points to consider around assessment:
- Discuss all assessment criteria first with your Course Coordinator and then with your students
- You must ensure you have a copy of the marking guide from the Course Coordinator which outlines the criteria for assessment.
- Feedback is best when it is timely, clear and unbiased
- Remind students at all times the importance of acknowledging sources and direct the students to support services to avoid plagiarism.
1. I suspect one of my students of plagiarising. What should I do?
You should immediately bring this to the attention of the Head Tutor or CC. Plagiarising does not necessarily mean cheating and if a student has plagiarised this can be a flag that there are other issues going on for the student such as not understanding the tasks or the correct academic protocols for completing their assignments. Detecting plagiarism can also inform academics about possibly needing to re-design their assessment tasks. You can go to the plagiarism policy for more information.
2. They keep asking whether this is on the exam or in the assignment. What do I say?
First let the students know you understand that they may be anxious about their assessment and wanting to be as prepared they can. Encourage them to see that all material in lectures, tutes, labs and assignments will be a part of their final assessment. Also help them understand it is just not about focusing on the 'content' but skills, such as 'problem solving and analysis', are equally important in their overall assessment.
3. What do I do with students who aren't attending and aren't handing in work?
It is important to alert the Head Tutor, CC or Teaching and Learning Advisors as soon as you notice a pattern of student absenteeism. There are different guidelines for attendance for higher education, vocational education and international students, however, students regularly missing class and/or not submitting work can be an indicator that a student may need some assistance with their study plan or may need to be referred to student services for some academic or non-academic support.