Internal moderation

The quality of national assessment relies on quality assurance systems operating in every institution. Schools must have assessment policies and procedures to ensure that results reported are accurate and consistent with the listed standard.

Internal moderation supports the credibility of assessment by ensuring that assessment is valid and judgements are verifiable.

Schools undertake quality assurance each year for each NCEA subject to ensure that:

  • all assessment material is critiqued* and modified as necessary, before use
  • judgements are consistent across classes
  • for each standard a sufficient sample of each teacher's grade judgements is verified*
  • annotated benchmark samples of student work are identified and retained
  • for each standard assessment materials are retained with a random selection of student work for the purpose of external moderation
  • all advice from external moderation is actioned before the materials are used again
  • staff use external professional links to maintain their understanding of the standards.

*The critiquing process: to ensure the assessment activity focuses on the requirements specified in the standard and provides the opportunity for students to present evidence at all grades.

*The verification process: to ensure that the teacher judgements are consistent with the standard, before they report the results to NZQA. It should be undertaken by a subject specialist with standard specific knowledge. The marker should seek verification of samples of work around grade boundaries, as well as for any grades that need review, to satisfy themselves that their decisions are consistent with the standard. Work for verification should be purposefully selected, rather than being selected randomly.

Random selection for external moderation:

  • must be undertaken by someone other than the teacher who marked the work
  • must use a method that does not allow for prediction and must include the work of all students who submitted work for the assessment
  • should be made as soon as possible after assessment and should be conducted for every standard assessed by the school.

Schools can adopt or adapt the Internal Moderation Cover Sheet to aid them in the internal moderation process. 

Teachers establish external links with colleagues in other schools, subject associations and subject advisers. Contact can be maintained through, online social networking, instant messaging, video conferencing or email links, as appropriate.

As external professional interaction helps teachers to maintain a current understanding of the standards, it is recommended that senior management in all schools continues to encourage and, if necessary, facilitate these contacts.

Annotated exemplars of TKI resources that can be used to assess against standards are available on the subject pages. Clarification documents for standards and Best Practice Workshops also provide assistance to increase teacher confidence when making assessment judgements.

Teachers may seek further clarification on how to interpret a standard by asking specific questions of moderators using the Request for clarification of an internally assessed standard (DOCX, 78KB) form.

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