Organisations with their sights set on the future of assessment have been invited to apply to a £1 million fund, supported by NCFE.

The Assessment Innovation Fund is being made available for two pilots on an initial 12-month basis, with up to £100,000 being up for grabs for organisations such as providers, qualification developers, and awarding bodies.

“The fund is now open for applications from any organisation with an interesting idea about what the future of assessment might look like for the various stages of the learner journey,” NCFE has said.


NCFE wants ‘truly transformational’ assessment system

The awarding body envisions creating “innovative, robust and reliable” assessment solutions, which are “inherently fair and will provide an appropriate level of ‘recognisable value’ to all stakeholders who have invested in learning”.

Governance for the pilots will be provided by a panel of six AIF board members, which draws from awarding bodies, education technology organisations such as Jisc, providers and NCFE representatives.

NCFE’s head of assessment innovation Janine Oliver reasoned that, “as the pace of change in the world is ever-increasing, particularly due to disruptive new technologies, major societal trends, and not to mention the ongoing global pandemic, the needs of the labour market will continue to rapidly evolve”.

Which will require people to “continuously develop themselves to overcome challenges and seize opportunities” and integral to that will be “looking at the future of assessment and identifying the key ingredients required to create a system that is truly transformational for learners in technical and vocational education.

“Through this fund, we hope to enable and empower organisations to think big – to explore, innovate and importantly evidence how we can continue to evolve the way we assess in the future, learning lessons from the seismic global changes over the last two years.”

Applications for phase one of the fund close on 1 October.

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  1. I come from a safety and security background and am a qualified and exerienced trainer and assessor of safety and security qualifications. In this sector I see a future where assessment methodology is driven by a regulatory assessment standard that incorporates how assessment can be achieved through a spectrum of traditional methods ie face to face, right the way through to making use of the advances in communications technology. I see a future where an organisation can set up an area at their venue with appropriate technology to allow the use of remote voice and video to monitor and interact with students during live events. By regulating the how, you can regulate the quality and standard of the assessment. By developing a working assessment model, based on a regulation, the method is repeatable. If finance is an issue the venue drops back to traditional methods, also covered in the assessment regulatory standard. This concept supports both the idea of having Safety Training Centres of Excellance which could be stand-alone training centres that use virtual visual and audio scenarios, and the use of live events.