Competency Assessment: Designing Timely, Practical, and Holistic Assessments at Ontario CollegesJanuary 24th, 2009
CIITE Overview Colleges Integrating Immigrants to Employment (CIITE) Vision: Internationally trained immigrants have access to programs and services in the Ontario college system that build on their qualifications and expedite their securing employment commensurate with their skills and knowledge
Objective: To improve the support structures and services colleges provide to skilled immigrants. Focus: The development and implementation of systemic solutions to address barriers to immigrants rapid entry into the workplace. Result: Improved services for skilled immigrants Supported by the Ministry of Citizenship and Immigration of the Government of Ontario
Developed, led, and implemented by Ontario colleges
A multi-phased strategy for modifying and refining college systems and programsCIITE Overview
CIITE Background Phase 1: December 2003 December 2004: Identify barriers ITIs face in the Ontario college system Phase 2: September 2005 December 2007: Develop and test selected immigrant focused practices and services in the college system Phase 3.1: April 2008 - March 2009: Implement immigrant focused practices and services in the Ontario college system
Phase 3.1 Projects April 2008 - March 2009: Project Implementation Pilot Credential Recognition (REE)Implement ITI Advising ServicesImplement Language BenchmarkingPrepare Competency Assessment Models for RolloutITI Data CollectionDevelop and Implement Self-Assessment and Upgrade Employment ServicesDevelop and deliver Cultural Intelligence Training and Change ManagementFlexible/Modular Delivery Working Group
For more information on CIITE Projects visit www.ciite.ca
Competency Assessment - Addressing the GapCIITE Phase 2 identified the need for a consistent and standardized approach in order to maximize the recognition of education and experience and competency assessment was consequently funded as an additional project in Phase 2 (2007). Applicants not receiving credit for credentials without course outlines/descriptionsApplicants not receiving credit for workplace learning in a timely manner, particularly individuals with significant experience
What does CIITE mean by Competency Assessment?Competency assessment is a process whereby the competencies of an individual are evaluated in relation to a particular occupation, task, or process (i.e., what does a person know and can they apply their knowledge and skills to a particular standard?). Competency assessment may be used for two purposes:Assessment of prior learning to determine which components of a particular college program are lacking for graduation (competency assessment for education)Provision of a credential to accompany formal degrees, diplomas, and certificates which attests to practical abilities (competency assessment for employment). Or, more succinctly PLAR to college program learning outcomes with the granting of a Letter of Achievement if successful
What does CIITE mean by Competency Assessment? (contd) The CIITE Competency Assessment Project design was based on two key assumptions of what is required to conduct viable, sustainable assessments of skills and experience in Ontario colleges.
college competency assessments should be replicable across the Ontario college system so that ITIs can access assessment accordingly, and colleges can affordably offer appropriate assessmentcompetency assessments should be based on program and professional requirements
Distinguishing PLAR and Competency Assessment
PLAR Competency Assessment
Identify, assess, and recognize skills, knowledge, and professional behaviour that cannot be assessed in formal credentials based on the learning outcomes of college courses
Identify, assess, and recognize skills, knowledge, and professional behaviour based on the learning outcomes of college programs and professional requirements
Demonstrate a candidates capability for professional employment in Canada (regulated professions and professional bodies)
Receive a grade for a college course. Grades for PLAR courses are included on college transcripts towards the achievement of a college diploma/degreeReceive credit for a college program or, if all competencies are demonstrated, be given a Letter of Achievement
Identify any skills, knowledge, and/or professional behaviour that require further development
Competency Assessment Project The Competency Assessment Project was funded near the end of CIITE Phase 2 (2007). CIITE is currently in Phase 3, which began in April 2008.Phase 2 Competency Assessment :Project Timeline: February 2007 December 2007
Participants: Algonquin, Boreal, CAPLA, Centennial, Conestoga, CRTO, Fanshawe, George Brown, Humber, La Cit, Niagara, OACETT, Seneca, St Clair, and Sheridan
Key deliverable:Develop outlines of models that will assess the knowledge and skills of ITIs by program rather than on a course-by-course basis (regulated), Mechanical Engineering Technologist (unregulated, but with professional body)
Phase 3.1 Overview The competency assessment activity in Phase 3.1 is developing, validating and piloting the model in two occupations: Respiratory Therapy (RT) and Mechanical Engineering Technology (MET). Teams of experts in each profession have developed the professions List of Competencies to be tested, as well as assessment tools. These have been validated by employers, regulatory bodies, and/or professional associations before being piloted in the colleges in the last three months of Phase 3.1.
Phase 3.1 Participants RT Project
Respiratory Therapy Participating colleges are Algonquin, La Cit, and Fanshawe. The CRTO participates in an advisory capacity.
Update on Respiratory Therapy Competency AssessmentThe project has worked with CRTO to ensure that the competencies assessed meet the most up-to-date regulations and policies.
Currently, the team is developing the assessment tools. The assessment will have three levels of testing: written, simulated, and clinical.
The model outlined on the next page will not be tested in its entirety in Phase 3.1. Rather, the purpose of the pilot in Phase 3.1 is data collection for future bridging projects and validation of the tools. The results for the assessment could be used to determine advanced standing at the college. The ultimate goal, although not part of this phase, is for these tools to be used for more efficient and standardized PLAR to program learning oucomes.
The pilot is set to begin on January 31st 2009.
Overview of RT Competency Assessment ModelPotential candidate meets with Assessor to discuss options and decides to pursue competency assessment at an Ontario CollegeCandidate registers with the CRTOCandidate takes the didactic assessment (no academic recognitions possible at this stage)If successful on didactic assessment candidate continues to taker simulate d assessments. If unsuccessful at any one simulation, candidate returns to Assessor to re-evaluate their path.If successful on all simulated assessments, candidate moves onto the clinical assessments.Successful candidate referred to the CRTO ; receives recognition from the Ontario colleges and results are entered into the REE.
Challenges in Respiratory TherapyChallenge: Success of candidates - As the competency assessment aims to test the qualifications necessary to practice Respiratory Therapy(RT) in Ontario there is concern about the success of candidates. Respiratory Therapy is primarily a North American profession and many of the internationally trained applicants will be individuals who are switching professions (e.g. Anesthesiology Assistants, Intensive Care specialist, etc.). There is concern that there wont be many individuals in the pilot who pass the written test. Action: Searching for pilot participants with relevant experience
Challenge: Cost of assessment for candidate A general concern that should be kept in mind when developing the competency assessment is the direct financial costs of taking the assessment, the cost of travel and having to take time off work, securing child care, etc.
Contact Info:Rebecca Carnevale416-351-7530 ext [email protected]
Website: www.ciite.ca look for the competency assessment final report in March!
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