Initial and diagnostic assessments are used as part of the onboarding process for new learner’s, the assessments help you to get to know them, their skill level and the best to way to teach them.

The two assessments are closely linked, however, they provide a different result when completed by a learner, which can then be used as the basis for the learners individual learning plan.

What is an initial assessment?

An initial assessment should take place at the time of the learners transition into their new learning programme. The initial assessment can be used to help the organisation find out about the learner as an individual, and to identify any aspects that without the assessment, may have gone unnoticed.

This means should a learners programme require adjustments to match their individual needs, this can be implemented from the beginning.

What is a diagnostic assessment?

A diagnostic assessment helps to identify specific learning strengths and needs. It can evaluate a learner’s skills, knowledge, strengths and areas for development in a particular subject area.

The results will determine the level at which your learner is sat, where improvements need to be made and which areas learners may be have higher-level skills than others.

Diagnostic assessments are performed at the start of a learner programme, similar to initial assessments, however, can also be used throughout the programme to assess progress.

Imagine teaching a unit to an apprentice, and then being able to assess that learner to see how far they had progressed – this is an ideal way to use a diagnostic assessment, whereby showcasing a learners distance travelled.

Ofsted inspections ask to see evidence of distance travelled in learners and how the provider is monitoring progress, Smart VLE assessments make this easy with clear evidence available during inspection.

There are many initial and diagnostic assessments available, with some organisations creating their own, or some utilising resources from online.

Smart VLE is a virtual learning environment from Smart Apprentices that comes pre-loaded with initial and diagnostic assessments plus functional skills English and maths.

VAK (Visual, Audio and Kinaesthetic) Assessments are also pre-built into Smart VLE to further assess the best way to teach your learners. Not only pre-populated assessments, but Smart VLE also offers clients the opportunity to create bespoke assessments, with some of our current clients using Smart VLE to create Induction assessments.

“We realised that a lot of our day to day training resources needed looking at. All of our resources were on word docs and migraine-inducing spreadsheets, VLE allowed us to automate this process. It seemed a no brainer for the multiple-choice test to be put on VLE. Where VLE has helped us massively is with those classroom tests because they are a helpful, constant snapshot of learning and we can automate the marking and sending – the instructors love it” – Ursula Christie, GTG Training

To find out more about how Smart Apprentices can digitally transform your apprenticeship delivery, click here or call 0845 460 4440.

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