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To APP or not to APP in ICT at KS3...

Discussion in 'Computing and ICT' started by djphillips1408, Jun 28, 2011.

  1. djphillips1408

    djphillips1408 New commenter

    Hold on so you are at the end of your NQT year and can I assume that you are in a permenant post?
    If that is the case then bother with finding any form of evidence, just take the route of "not" and forget it.
  2. There is no statutory obligation to make ay use of or reference to APP and there has been much discussion here over the relative merits. Personally, I think the APP stuff is more clear than the level descriptors and we use it as our assessment description of choice at KS3. That said, I think assessment at KS3 is something best handled quickly and with a minimum of fuss. you don't make a pig fatter by weighing it every fortnight...

    If it works for you, and your students, then go for it. If not, use the NC level descriptors.
  3. ICT Don

    ICT Don New commenter

    Not that it's worth losing sleep over but...

    APP was implemented using the new level descriptors.
    We are supposed to go back to using the old ones.

    In my mind APP shouldn't be used because the criteria no longer match what we should be assessing.

  4. Isn't it just great that we don't even know whether we should be using it or not. Academy status will further complicate things.
  5. After numerous APP meetings over the last few years, sharing good practice meetings, LEA advisor visits and handouts, I can confirm that APP is a pile of meaningless sh1 te that is as much use as a condom to the pope. An utter waste of everyone's time and huge waste of public money.
    Ignore APP, keep your assessment meaningful and simple. When you start a block of work, decide on objectives, give each one a level that broadly goes: easy (level 4), harder, bit harder, much harder, showoff hard (level 8). Each level should have 3 statements so you can award sublevels. If you can be arrrsed, have a quick look at the NC levels and make the targets somehow hit each level in some way (very easy to do as they are so general).
    Assessment is best done using a form of self-assesment as a class at the end of block. It should take 20 minutes with the class after the block has been finished. Record the levels so that you make sure the next block's level is slightly higher. Over the years, the graph for each kid needs to slope upwards to show progress. All our kids start at Level 4c/5a at the start of year 7 and finish at level 7c/8a at the end of year 9. Don't fret over the NC or APP. As long as you have a system that everyone understands, you'll be fine. In over 20 years of teaching ICT, no one has ever scruntinised what I do - says it all really.
  6. The above is a load of twaddle. Exactly what APP was meant to help with. There is huge discrepancy in standards between one school's level 5 / level 6 / etc, versus another's school's level 5 / 6 / etc.
    The NC level descriptors are generic and open to inflation from those HoDs who want to show good numbers and progress from their KS3. APP is meant to give rigour and is a worthy - although ridiculous attempt - to encourage assessment to a national standard.
    Overall, APP stinks of Labour government education policy; worthy intention... but huge amounts of money wasted, proscriptive, bulky in detail, ultimately useless and worth ignoring.
  7. robot1

    robot1 New commenter

    ICT Don - you say that we are supposed to be using the old level descriptors, not the new ones. Do you know where this information can be found?

  8. ICT Don

    ICT Don New commenter

    From http://curriculum.qcda.gov.uk/key-stages-3-and-4/subjects/key-stage-3/ict/Level-descriptions/index.aspx
    Following the government's decision not to proceed with the revisions to level descriptions consulted on in 2009, schools should use the level descriptions contained in the secondary curriculum handbook for end of key stage 3 statutory assessment at the end of Year 9 from 2011 until further notice (from 2010 for schools which have a compressed, two-year key stage 3).

    and from: http://www.education.gov.uk/childrenandyoungpeople/strategy/laupdates/a0071141/important-information-on-the-primary-curriculum-and-key-stage-3-level-descriptions
    Ministers have also decided not to proceed with the revised level descriptions which were due to come into force for Key Stage 3 from this September. Secondary schools should therefore continue to use existing level descriptions.

  9. ICT Don

    ICT Don New commenter

    I wonder how many teachers across all subjects are still using the 'new' descriptors?
  10. gavcradd

    gavcradd New commenter

    Now I'm really confused - are the new ones perhaps ones that I haven't even seen? My "new" ones are quite a few year's old, the ones that were introduced when control went out of the window and sequencing instructions came in. Are these the right ones to be using or do I need to go back even further?
    Perhaps someone could link to the definitive current level descriptors to remove any doubt?
  11. ICT Don

    ICT Don New commenter

    The first link is from the NC website. It used to have the levels about sequencing of instructions etc. I assumed they had reverted back. Having read some of them, (before making my end of year 9 assessments of the pupils I teach - ahem,) they seem just the same.
    I didn't mean to be misleading but I read the statements I quoted and assumed they were the old ones.
  12. ICT Don

    ICT Don New commenter

    kevinh781 's response makes sense. Sorry to bring this up again and I promise to ignore all KS3 level related trivia in future.
    Our school is almost certainly going to use GCSE gradings in KS3 next year so I won't give any more thought to the subject and hope it all goes away.
  13. greensofa

    greensofa New commenter

    Actually, its your username that says it all, really.
  14. greensofa

    greensofa New commenter

    sorry, that was to mossonbrick

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