Evidence & Status Management

Terminology guide

Assessor

Found in Profiler
An individual responsible for supporting a student in completing their apprenticeship. A key part of this role is to ensure evidence is provided (normally by the learner) to demonstrate that a learner has met all their learning requirements.


Primary Assessor

Found in Learning Assistant
The assessor who will lead on the support of a learner for a specific Learning Aim (course). The assessor is the primary point of contact and check that evidence meets the requirements.


Learning aim

Found in Profiler
The individual components that make up the learning programme of an apprentice. These are likely to include Functional Skills, an NVQ, a Certificate (under the Qualifications and Credit Framework), Reviews and Introduction.

In Learning Assistant the individual components are called “Courses” and in Profiler they can also be referred to as “Qualifications”.


Course

Found in Learning Assistant
See "Learning Aim".


Learning programme

Found in Profiler
A term given to the collection of Learning Aims (see above) that a learner must complete to achieve success in their Apprenticeship. The Learning Programme is what learners are enrolled onto. In Profiler this is also referred to as a “Programme Template”.

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Overview

Evidence and status management in PIVOT relies heavily on integration points. This is simply because the learner uses Totara (learner portal) and the assessor uses Learning Assistant (E-portfolio).

Both systems handle their own independent functions in relation to the learner’s actions, and the assessor’s actions. They integrate via web services at the points needed in the workflow to ensure data flow is kept as accurate as possible in relation to real life button presses.

The amount of back and forth action and files uploaded can vary greatly between clients, qualifications and even individual learners and PIVOT’s robust solution caters for this.

Quick guide

The following diagram shows the interactions between the learner and assessor, and how the evidence and statuses are updated and managed throughout.

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How is evidence and status management handled in the key learner and assessor scenarios?

The following workflows are common in PIVOT and detail how the evidence and statuses are handled in each case.

Scenario 1a – Initial submission of a task

  1. Learner – Submit task with associated attachments
  2. Totara (automated)
    1. Send the files to Learning Assistant. This will include:
      1. A .html file containing open input answers and references to attachments. The file name will have the format taskid-summary.html
      2. A separate file for each attachment with the name format taskid-activityid-filename
    2. Save the status as Submitted
  3. Learning Assistant (automated) – Store evidence against the correct learner’s task, correctly cross referenced, and update task status to Submitted.
  4. Assessor – View available submission in Awaiting Review area. Carry out 1 of 2 actions:
    1. Return the task if criteria is not satisfied. Use the contact diary entry to do this and leave a helpful message
    2. Complete the task if criteria is satisfied. . Use the contact diary entry to do this and leave a helpful message
    3. If files need to be sent this can’t be done via the contact diary but can be done via the Message centre (launched by clicking on the message icon when in the course folder for the learner)
  5. Learning Assistant (automated) – Update status and store contact diary entry. Note: Message centre entries are not automatically stored in the contact diary so need to be manually entered by the assessor if needed.
  6. Totara (automated) – Update the status to Returned or Completed as necessary and store the message (sent via the contact diary or message centre) in the learner’s message centre.

Scenario 1b – Subsequent re-submission of a task following changes by a learner

Note: Our recommended approach is for the learner to keep any old files intact and upload new ones. If the file name is the same Totara will add a postfix to it meaning that Learning Assistant will treat it as a new file which will make it obvious to the assessor which the new one is.

The alternative approach is for the learner to delete the old attachment and reattach the updated file keeping the same name. This will upload the existing file in Learning Assistant but it may not be obvious to the assessor that the file has been replaced.

  1. Learner – Amend entries and attachments as appropriate and submit task
  2. Totara (automated) – Send files and Submitted status to Learning Assistant
  3. Learning Assistant (automated) – Add any new evidence (new file name), remove any deleted evidence, and update any changed evidence (same file name); and update task status
  4. Assessor – Review submission and action as appropriate
  5. Learning Assistant (automated) – Update status and store contact diary entry as appropriate
  6. Totara (automated) – Update the status to Returned or Completed as necessary and store the message in the learner’s message centre.

What happens when an Assessor uploads supplementary evidence in Learning Assistant?

Evidence synchronisation only occurs one way, from Totara to Learning Assistant.

The situation can arise where Assessors need to add supplementary evidence such as observations and discussions to the evidence folder for the learner. They can do this within Learning Assistant using the evidence wizard and using this tool can also cross reference the evidence directly into the certification units.

As Learning Assistant is the master for evidence and qualifications, only having the extra evidence stored in here is sufficient. If the Assessor does however want it to be in Totara also for the learner then they simply need to use the Message Centre to send the files, in the same way that they would have done when sending supplementary files during the process of reviewing submitted evidence.

Frequently asked questions

There is a 1mb per second connection between the services so the actual synchronisation time is quick. The queue is processed every half an hour and there may be instances when a task needs to be re-queued. Current monitoring has shown that it can therefore take up to 2 hours to process evidence. We will continue monitoring to see the impact of heavy usage. The SLA for evidence to be uploaded remains at 24 hours.

You can use the ‘Synchronise User Task Evidence’ MQS Integration tool in Totara to search for a particular learner, qualification and task. It will show the status of the task and evidence in that task. Each piece of evidence will have a cell for the date uploaded and uuid; if these are empty it means that the task is not yet synched. For diagnosing the issue it is best to take a screenshot of this screen, and give it to a developer to look at along with the transaction code of the failed job which can be found in the Queues section of the Support Tool. The developer will then check Kibana to find out further details and diagnose the issue.

There are 2 report sources which you can use to see the view that we hold of Learning Assistant. The ‘LA user evidence’ report shows jobs that have been processed successfully and the ‘LA user files’ report shows all of the files that have been uploaded to LA. Changes to the view are triggered by SOAP evidence calls so will give you a close to current picture of what is going on. In the future the view of evidence will be replaced with a real time web service.