What are strands?
You can set weighted strands when setting up your summative assessment, meaning certain aspects or ‘strands’ of your assessment will carry greater weight in the final outcome. Marks in each strand will contribute towards the overall assessment grade depending on the weighting of the strand. This allows for more nuanced analysis.
When you create strands, the summative assessment becomes a parent assessment, with each strand marked independently but feeding into the overall parent assessment’s grade. You are able to create as many strands as you need for your assessment.
Here’s an example of how strands can be used to assess a student using strands:
|‘Parent’ Assessment:||Yr 7 Science||100% weighting|
|Strand 1 :||Reactions||11.11%|
|Strand 2 :||Acids & alkalis||11.11%|
|Strand 3 :||Adaption & inheritance||11.11%|
|Strand 4 :||Ecosystems||11.11%|
|Strand 5 :||Healthy lifestyles||11.11%|
|Strand 6 :||Electricity & Magnetism||11.11%|
|Strand 7 :||Motion & pressure||11.11%|
|Strand 8 :||Practical||11.11%|
|Strand 9 :||Exams||11.11%|
- You must name each of your strands, but creating a short name for your strands is optional.
- The combined total weighting of your strands must total 100%.
- The minimum weight of a stand is 5%.
- You cannot manually enter an equal weight for an odd number of strands that results in a split that relies on recurring decimal places, e.g 33.33% for each strand. You must use the equal weight feature for these scenarios.
Assigning strands to specific Assessment Periods
When you create strands as part of your summative assessment, your strands will automatically be applied to all of the assessment periods that have been assigned to the parent assessment.
For instance, if you have created a summative assessment and have chosen a half-termly assessment period and your school has the typical 3 terms per year, then all of your strands will appear in each assessment period, with a total of 6 instances of strands that you can enter marks for.
In some cases, a strand may only be taught and assessed in some of the assessment periods. For instance:
- 'Numbers' might be a strand of your 'Maths' parent assessment, but it is only taught in the first term of the year.
- One of your strands is the final exam of the module. Therefore, you would only need to assess this strand in the final assessment period for that assessment in an academic year.
To specify which assessment period a strand can be assessed in, go to the Students > Assessments > Annual Policy > Manage Assessments. Select your summative assessment with strands.
From the Assessment Overview, click the field containing Strand Assessment Periods.
Each assessment period will have a check-box for each strand. To remove a strand from an assessment period, simply un-tick the relevant strand box and then click 'Update Assessment Periods' at the bottom of the slide over.
Please note: You can only remove strands that do not already have any marks entered for an assessment period. Please ensure the strand is blank before attempting to exclude the assessment period.
What other aspects of strands can I edit?
To edit your strands for an assessment, go to the Students > Assessments > Annual Policy > Manage Assessments. Click the + next to the assessment name then click the strand.
If you wish to add or delete strands, please contact our customer support team. This is because once a summative assessment with strands setup has been completed, you cannot add a new strand or delete any of the current strands. You will need to back up any assessment data, delete the assessment, create a new one and re-upload the backed up data.
What do strands look like in a marksheet?
As with all marksheets, to enter a mark for one of your strands, you must ensure you have selected a date in the filter that falls within the relevant assessment period you are trying to enter marks for.
In the example below, the parent assessment has been created with half-termly assessment periods. The filter date has been set to Oct 6th. Therefore, the assessment period visible is ‘Autumn 1’, The first half term of the year.
How do strands and assessment periods change throughout the year?
In order to enter a mark for one of your strands, you must ensure you have selected a date in the filters that fall within the relevant assessment period that you are entering marks for.
In the example below, the parent assessment has been created with half-termly assessment periods. The filter date has been set to Jan 30th. Therefore, the assessment period visible is ‘Spring 1’. The third half term of the year.
You’ll notice an additional `Completed Assessment Periods' section of the marksheet. This displays the average marks column for the previous assessment periods.
You will notice that there are two average mark columns in the marksheet. The first average is in the 'academic year' section and the second is in the assessment period section.
The average marks do not take into account any ‘blank marks’. Therefore, the average mark only represents the average mark of strands that have been assessed.
- Academic year average - This is the total average mark for the parent assessment, taking into account all of the strands in all assessment periods in the academic year.
- Assessment period average - This is the total average mark for the specific assessment period. This is the mark that is used to populate the ‘Completed Assessment Period’ column when viewing an assessment period that is during the academic year.
Can we set different targets for each strand?
Yes, you can set a target for each strand by accessing the strand marksheet in the assessments dashboard.