Things to consider when selecting assessment tools

Developing assessment support resources is not only time consuming but can be complex. There are many commercial suppliers in the VET market offering assessment support resources, but how do you know you are selecting the right supplier?

Again, we refer to the NSSC, which stated 'All developers of Assessment tools must consider the full requirements of the unit of competency in their tools'.

What does this mean when you are looking for a resource supplier?

According to the NSSC, you should select assessment support resources that offer:

  • assessment information that addresses the requirements of the elements, performance criteria and range statement
  • specific advice on the language, literacy and numeracy requirements of the unit
  • tools that address the dimensions of competency:
    • task skills
    • task management skills
    • contingency skills
    • job/role environment skills

It is necessary to select tools that:

  • directly address the skill and knowledge requirements for each study unit
  • enable collection of evidence to support the critical aspects of assessment
  • provide for the collection of assessment evidence to support the rules of evidence and principles for assessment
  • are aimed at the appropriate level for the qualification

When purchasing commercial resources you will also want to select tools that you can contextualise fit your assessments with specific industry contexts.

Clear instructions on how to use the assessment tools and how to integrate them into your RTO's Training and Assessment Strategy, are needed. This type of instruction is, for example, provided in the smallprint User Guide.

You'll need to validate the tools and use the validation results to support the RTO's continuous improvement initiatives.

Well mapped assessment tools and evidence collection processes - against the elements, PCs, critical aspects and required skills and knowledge - will help with validations.

There is no set format or process for the design, production or development of assessment tools.

Assessors can use a range of resources in any format or delivery mode. For example, an assessor can use a combination of commercial assessment tools and tools that the RTO has had developed and that are used by their assessors.

You can edit and contextualise smallprint assessment resources to meet your needs by using our editable assessment (on-line) tool.

Alternately you can provide us with your additional assessment materials for inclusion in your printed workbooks (find out more here).

To find out more about how smallprint can support your assessment processes, please call us on 08 8275 9300, or email us at

smallprint vocational training resources are also available for online training at Catapult eLearning, call 08 8275 9380 or email for further information.