TASC Accredited Courses FAQ

This page was last updated on: 9/4/2020 at 09:49
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TASC is working with all senior secondary authorities across Australia to ensure consistency of approach to the challenges we are facing due to COVID-19. As the situation evolves TASC will advise as decisions are made.

TASC is working very hard behind the scenes with colleagues in all school sectors, the Framework Advisory Council, Years 9-12 Learning and others to find solutions to the challenges we are facing.

General

For courses that require engagement/field-work with outside organisations:

Individual students:

· Placements can proceed, provided safety protocols around hand hygiene, physical distancing and cleaning are being followed. Students should be aware of any policies or guidelines that the workplace or organisation may be using.

Classes:

· Off-site activities that are critical to fulfil course requirements, and which are unable to be completed on school sites or deferred to a later time, can be undertaken. If it is necessary for off-site education activities to occur, then risk management processes need to be strictly followed.

Group sizes

· The group size would need to reflect the minimum number of people required to safely complete the activities and the maximum number of people allowed to comply with the current Tasmanian travel and gathering restrictions which are:

· 9 June – 26 June – Maximum of 20 people

· After 26 June – 50-100 people, with further advice to be provided by Public Health.

It should be noted that these restrictions are subject to change, based on Public Health advice.

How do students who are unable to physically be together complete the practical components of their courses (e.g. Arts, HPE, Sciences etc.)?

  • With students back on campuses, practical elements of courses can proceed at the school’s discretion, provided safety protocols around hygiene, physical distancing (where possible) and cleaning are being followed. For more information, visit the Tasmanian Government Coronavirus website here or consult your sector head for school-specific advice. For DoE schools, specific advice about subjects with practical elements can be found in the Term 2 Operating Guidelines here.

What should I do if students are required to share equipment?

  • Ensure that shared equipment e.g. sports equipment, calculators, scientific implements/tools, musical instruments, food technology equipment is cleaned between uses. Clothing and fabric used in classes do not need to be cleaned any more frequently than usual.

What about the delivery of courses?

  • Schools are required to ensure that the TASC standards for delivery and assessment of TASC accredited courses are met.

  • TASC and Years 9 to 12 Learning have worked together to has consider the impact of the current COVID-19 circumstances on learning for students. TASC has published information online regarding course adjustments and considerations for 2020. This can be found here.

Could TASC suspend /stop/postpone their audit schedule?

  • TASC has a legislated responsibility to ensure students’ access and participation aligns with the course standards, and to ensure the integrity, validity and reliability of qualifications it issues. While all schools must continue to engage with quality assurance requirements, TASC is sensitive to the extraordinary pressures facing them at this time.

How do international students, who can’t get back to Australia, do their practical requirements in science courses?

  • TASC are working with schools on a case by case basis. Any enquiries, please contact TASC enquiries@tasc.tas.gov.au

How do we ensure academic integrity of student produced material during learning at home?

  • Schools’ academic integrity policies would apply regardless of where the students are working.  Schools may need to revisit their own academic integrity policies to ensure they are applicable under changing circumstances.
  • There have been no changes in regards to the criteria and standards elements in courses.  Where teachers are assessing standard elements which relate to academic integrity then those standards need to be applied written.
  • Where schools have access to, and currently use software such as Turnitin, there is no reason for this practice to change.
  • Strong practices for demonstrating academic integrity include keeping copies of drafts or different iterations or work, or photographing practical work in progress.  These practices can be maintained or introduced as appropriate for students to be able to show evidence of a piece of work in progress.
  • Look for irregularities in students’ work and pay attention to draft copies and referencing. Try to see the process of development in students’ work.
  • The TASC website has information to support your students with their academic integrity.
  • Schools may need to find new ways to support students who are working from home.  Students should keep records of their sources and versions of their work.  Tools such as Turnitin can be accessed online and teacher-librarians can assist students with accessing and using academic integrity tools from home.

Can Years 11 and 12 students continue to access reasonable adjustments for TASC external assessment?

The Office of Tasmanian Assessment, Standards and Certification (TASC) has updated information about reasonable adjustments for TASC external assessments on their website, including policy advice and new application forms.

The application process is now open and closes on Friday 29 May.

Given the current circumstances, TASC will ensure that late applications will continue be assessed as the need arises. The process will be continually monitored and advice provided as circumstances change.

If students cannot access medical professionals to complete their reasonable adjustment form schools should:

  • Lodge an intention to apply for reasonable adjustments against the student’s profile in TRACS.
  • Schools should attach whatever evidence is available including, current documentation of advice that is present at the school level, a school-based statement about the use of the adjustments in learning (found on the form).
  • Please see TASC’s Reasonable Adjustments Policy that includes information about late applications.

What will happen with courses where work will not be able to be monitored during its development?

  • It would depend on why the work needed to be monitored in progress:
    • If it was to assess students on particular aspect of work or the progress of this work then a range of evidence could be supplied e.g. student submits a video showing them using a particular tool safely, images of the project across the development, etc.
    • If it was to support the student to produce their best quality work then the teacher could adopt a range of practices such as: online Q&A, asking students to fill out short questionnaires explaining how they did things and why that was the best option (justification of tools, techniques/processes), etc. The teacher would then provide feedback on these types of explanations.
    • If it was to demonstrate it was the work of the student then the academic integrity policy of the school and TASC’s academic integrity requirements would apply.
  • For more information on academic integrity please refer to the question on academic integrity.

The Arts

Should we be cancelling performances?

  • Advice regarding 2020 Course Considerations has been published on the TASC web site here.

Are Theatre/Performance Drama students able to use recorded live shows in place of actual audience participation?

  • TASC official advice to schools - at this stage schools can replace two (2) of the three live shows with a recorded show. This will continue to be reviewed over time. Should live theatre not be available by September, TASC will consider extending the number of recorded shows allowed in 2020 (only) to three (3).

How should schools manage supervision of students remotely (for example by Itinerant music tutors)?

  • Itinerant music tuition can still proceed in schools with the focus needing to be on the theoretical components where shared use of instruments in prohibited by guidelines.
  • Itinerant music tutors (IM)  may be involved in live online classes which are recorded (where  approval is provided by the parent and the parent acts as the supervisor).
  • IMs can also be involved in music classes using software programs such as such as Blackboard Collaborate (where the Breakout Room is a feature), to allow IMs to work with a small number of students.
  • The IM may use any online platform where the teacher or parent  has line of sight into the online space. IMs can be off site when this occurs. The sessions can be recorded in this software. It is recommended that each session for each student is recorded, for review by the teacher. Ensure parental permission has been sought for this to occur.
  • Professional learning for these platforms will be offered to Itinerant music tutors and teachers during the next two weeks.
  • Below are some protocols that should be used for instrumental and vocal tuition.

Where possible:

    • Have an environment free of distractions.
    • Encourage parents to be involved in the learning (eg: discussing the goals, methods).
    • Choose a location that is well lit, but without strong lighting coming from behind the person in sight of the camera.
    • Ensure that nothing is visible to the camera that you would not want others to see (or hear).

Will the Drama Level 3 exam paper refer to the mid-year show? 

  • The external assessment specifications for Drama have been updated here and do not refer to the major mid-year production.

Where ensemble is stipulated in course criteria and standards (Theatre Performance, Contemporary Music etc) are TASC considering how these requirements can be met? 

Is there flexibility in the delivery of TASC course content while schools are delivering to students off site?

  • At this stage schools should make adjustments to their planned scope and sequences in light of a transition to learning at home.
  • TASC and Years 9-12 Learning are working together to analyse the requirements for each course and will provide advice as soon possible, in line with advice with other states and territories.

HASS

Do students still need to do work placement for courses that require it?

  • lacements can proceed, provided safety protocols around hand hygiene, physical distancing and cleaning are being followed. The normal practice for arranging and coordinating placements should be followed. Students should be aware of and follow any COVID-19-specific policies or guidelines that the workplace, organisation or community setting may be using.
  • Schools should consider that many workplaces have been under considerable stress and have been largely focused on survival. With restrictions now being gradually eased, many are focusing on re-opening, meeting new health guidelines and planning for an unknown future. They may not always be in a position to take on additional pressures or responsibilities. Schools should consider whether there may be a more appropriate time to approach workplaces to arrange placements and should respect the workplace’s decision on whether they choose to host a placement.

How should schools proceed with any placements for community service learning?

  • Placements can proceed, provided safety protocols around hand hygiene, physical distancing and cleaning are being followed. The normal practice for arranging and coordinating placements, such as risk management/assessment practices and parental approval, should be followed. Students should be aware of and follow any COVID-19-specific policies or guidelines that the workplace or organisation may be using.

Mixed Field

Should Schools be liaising with work places and mentors to ascertain if their existing arrangements can be continued?

  • Placements and off-site learning activities can proceed, provided safety protocols around hand hygiene, physical distancing and cleaning are being followed. The normal practice for arranging and coordinating placements should be followed. Students should be aware of and follow any COVID-19-specific policies or guidelines that the workplace or organisation may be using.
  •  Schools should consider that many workplaces have been under considerable stress and have been largely focused on survival. With restrictions now being gradually eased, many are focusing on re-opening, meeting new health guidelines and planning for an unknown future. They may not always be in a position to take on additional pressures or responsibilities. Schools should consider whether there may be a more appropriate time to approach workplaces to arrange placements and should respect the workplace’s decision on whether they choose to host a placement.

HPE

What are the guidelines around practical sport, recreation and Outdoor Education?

    • Sporting activities during school time that occur on site and which form part of the education program can be undertaken at any time. Types of activities are at the school’s discretion and consideration should be given to whether protocols around hygiene, physical distancing and cleaning of shared equipment can be safely followed when undertaking the activity.
    • Off-site activities that are critical to fulfil course requirements, and which are unable to be completed on school sites or deferred to a later time can be undertaken. If it is necessary for off-site education activities to occur, then risk management processes need to be strictly followed.
    • The group size would need to reflect the minimum number of people required to safely complete the activities and the maximum number of people allowed to comply with the current Tasmanian travel and gathering restrictions which are:
      • 9 June – 26 June – Maximum of 20 people
    • It should be noted that these restrictions are subject to change, based on Public Health advice.
    • Activities involving overnight trips are not to be undertaken.

Some subjects have mandated camps that they have to attend, how do we go about this as there may not be time to hold these camps when we get back to on-campus learning?

Assessment

How can I manage internal assessment in the current situation?

    • It is expected that schools will continue to provide quality teaching and learning, and in doing so may need to be flexible and agile in course delivery.
    • Evidence against each criterion is collected multiple times from different items/assessment tasks across the year of student learning. If a student has not had an opportunity to address a particular criterion at this stage, there will still be time for them to do so.

     

    • Schools should continue to:
      • manage students according to their assessment policies
      • undertake school-based assessments by teachers
      • keep a record of any student work (for example, photocopy, scan or save online, where possible) and school-based assessment already undertaken in 2020
      • plan ahead for students to undertake assessments later in the year if needed
      • ensure your assessment records are backed-up and the results are entered into your systems, as TASC may require these for validation purposes. See also Standards 1, 2, 3, 4 & 5.
    • Regardless of where and how students are learning, they need to abide by the school’s academic integrity policy and TASC’s Academic Integrity Guide.  The school can use a range of methods and supports regarding this and asking for a student signature would be quite appropriate. See Standard 7.

Are TASC external assessments, including written exams going ahead in 2020?

Are Mid-Year Exams a school based decision or does TASC have recommendations on those particular assessments?

  • Mid-year examinations (their structure, length and timing) are run entirely by schools, should they choose to run them. TASC is not involved in mid-year exams.

How does the current situation impact external assessment?

  • Currently TASC still intends to proceed with planned end of year assessments including folios and written exams in November.

Do teachers need to keep assessment records (and the assessment tasks) for all Level 1-4 TASC accredited courses?

  • Teachers should continue to maintain their assessment records, including their assessment tasks and samples of student work. See Standard 4.

Can exam setters exclude COVID-19 related topics because it will be sensitive for some students?

  • TASC will ensure the external assessment materials do not reference COVID-19 and the pandemic.

Do you still have a question? Email our team who will post the response on this FAQs page years9to12learning@education.tas.gov.au