Developing mentors to support students in practice, Part assessment and Accountability; – Assessment in practice. Summary

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Questions / Discussion

Questions enable mentors and practice teachers to ascertain a student’s level of knowledge and understanding. According to Walsh (2010) if observation is the cornerstone of assessing practice then questioning is the lynchpin of assessing a student’s knowledge base. Using questions and discussion increases content validity. Questioning can provide formative and summative feedback (Hand 2006). Quinn and Hughes (2007) advise that questions should be kept short and stated in a language that can be easily understood. They went onto to stress that questions should be geared at the appropriate level for the student, but at a level that poses problems so that a student can consider a solution, however, they should not be too ambiguous. Conversely, Quinn and Hughes (2007) cautions that questioning can be intimidating and Hand (2006) also warns that this method can seem threatening to a student and may make them feel humiliated. Nevertheless, observation alone is open to bias or errors (Price 2007) and cannot judge a student’s knowledge and reasoning therefore, the need for another method of assessment such as questioning is essential as well as gaining feedback from colleagues. Now complete learning activity 5.

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