One of the biggest mistakes that students and some trainers/assessors can make is to think that the learner guide and presentations are the only sources of answers for summative assessments. This is not the case! The assessor should be looking for evidence that the student has actually understood the content and can apply it in a real-world context. Copying and pasting from the learner guide or presentations do not demonstrate this understanding and should likely lead to a not-yet-competent grade. So what should students do instead?
The best way to prepare for summative assessments is to make sure that the students have a thorough understanding of the content. This means going beyond just reading or listening to the material – students need to be able to explain it in their own words and apply it to real-world situations. A great way to test their understanding is to try and teach the content to someone else. If they can explain it clearly and answer any questions they have, then the trainers/assessors know they’re on the right track!
Another useful strategy is to create a mind map or summary of the key points for each topic. This will help students to remember the main points and will also give them something to refer back to if they get stuck during an assessment.
Finally, don’t forget that as an assessor you should be available to help – if they’re not sure about something, they should ask! You must be able to give them guidance and feedback that will help them improve their understanding.
If your students are only relying on the learner guide and presentations for their answers, they may also be at risk of plagiarism. Plagiarism is when someone copy-and-pastes text from another source without giving credit to the original author. This is considered cheating and can lead to serious consequences, like getting expelled from school.
To avoid plagiarism, make sure your students understand that they need to answer questions in their own words. They can use the learner guide and presentations as a resource, but they should not copy verbatim from these sources. Instead, they should paraphrase the information and cite any direct quotes.
If you’re not sure how to teach your students about plagiarism, there are many resources available online, such as this article from the Purdue Online Writing Lab https://owl.purdue.edu/owl/avoiding_plagiarism/index.html
So, don’t rely on the learner guide and presentations as the only source of answers for summative assessments. Make sure your learners understand the content thoroughly and can apply it in a real-world context. If they do this, they’ll be well on their way to success!