When working as an assessor I need to take into account relevant policies, procedures and legal issues pertinent to my job. They could include access and fair assessment, appeals, authenticity, complaints, confidentiality of information, copyright and data protection, equality and diversity, plagiarism, quality assurance, safeguarding and Prevent Duty.
As an assessor, it is important to keep up to date with all legislations (laws passed by Parliament), regulatory requirements of the relevant industries and code of practice and any changes that have taken place. Moreover, it is imperative to know the requirements of external bodies and regulatory organisations such as Ofsted (in England) as well as the awarding organisations (Edexcel, City and Guilds) and funding agencies.
The first piece of legislation is the Equality Act (2010) which is against discrimination on the grounds of race, sex, religion, age, disability and sexual orientation. Therefore while assessing a coursework or any other piece of evidence, I must be aware of both UK acts and also my college policies to promote equality and diversity in order to ensure that no one gets preferential treatment in grading and my activities do not discriminate unfairly against any groups .
The Safeguarding vulnerable groups Act (2006) introduced a vetting and barring scheme to make decisions about who should be barred from working with children and vulnerable adults’ The company has a policy of obtaining Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) report for all assessors working with vulnerable adults. I adhere to organisational policies and procedures in terms of Safeguarding. During my one to one meeting with learners, I maintain my professional boundaries (i.e becoming too personal and friendly with learners), avoid seating too close to the learners, arrange meetings in rooms with see through glasses or in presence of their Line Managers or with other people around. According to the company policy, I am not allowed to give out my personal details, mobile phone numbers or socialise with students via social networking sites such as Facebook. I should also report to my safeguarding officer any concerns about students that I am working with.
Next, the Data Protection Act 1998 (currently GDPR) requires all personal information available in the group profile of learners to be kept confidential. According to the new law, assessors must make sure that assessment decisions, learners evidence, Progress Review Meeting and any comments about learner’s progress must be held securely. Learners are entitled to access their own information, see their feedback and progress report whenever they want to. So, according to Equality Act 2010, assessor’ s comments must be objective as far as possible and free from any prejudices.
One of the key laws is the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974, where my employer does have a duty of care to me as the employee. As such if I am required to work in any situation where I feel my health and safety is being compromised I always inform my line manager. However, with regard to health and safety there are certain things that as an assessor I need to be personally aware of and take responsibility for not putting me into vulnerable situations. In level 3, one of my learner is suffering from bi-polar disorder, depression and anxiety attack. I always keep my manager update any issues or new incidents about her; I make sure that her Line Manager is present in the meeting and I regularly get update from her LM regarding her progress and well being in the workplace.
As I do all my assessments on site (learner’s workplace) premises, I need to ensure my safeguarding first. When I go to a remote site (outside London), I ensure that I book my travel ahead of time, look for travel map/google map before travelling to any unknown site and inform my Line Manager by text /call about it. Moreover, I make sure that I do diary entry, identify possible health and safety risk and wear appropriate clothing to protect myself from heat or cold. During winter, I check weather forecast to make sure that I wear appropriate clothing. I also let other colleagues or the line manager either through a diary entry, log book or a contact where they are going and for how long and any possible risk.
In addition to the rules and regulations, I have completed all my mandatory training such as GDPR, Safeguarding and Prevent Duty, attend team meetings and carry out other CPD to keep myself up to date with knowledge and professional development.