Safe Hands First Aid Training Ltd

Policy on Teaching, Learning & Assessment

Introduction

The aim of this policy is to establish and continually improve the standards that Safe Hands First Aid Training Ltd delivers in respect to the quality of learning, teaching, and assessment across all of its provision.

Safe Hands First Aid Training Ltd has a commitment to improve the quality of learning, teaching and assessment and to facilitate continuous improvement. This policy underpins the delivery of our courses and all trainers are expected to adhere to this. An essential element of this commitment is the need for the highest standards of teaching and the promotion of learning. This will ensure that Safe Hands First Aid Training Ltd is successful in developing courses that promote high expectations and that stretch and challenge candidates to achieve their outcomes and enable skill development.

Objectives

In addition to the vocational skills and knowledge that candidates will gain through their studies, our learning, teaching and assessment will prepare learners for any first aid role that they may take on within the workplace.

Trainers and assessors are committed to maintaining and developing their expertise in both aspects of their role to ensure the best outcomes for their learners.

Developing qualities and aspiration in learners

Trainers must set high expectations which inspire, motivate and challenge learners by:

  • establishing a safe and stimulating environment for learning, rooted in mutual respect
  • setting goals that stretch and challenge learners of all backgrounds, abilities and dispositions
  • demonstrating the positive attitudes, values and behaviour which are expected of learners
  • ensuring learning strategies are challenging, innovative and motivating
  • use pre-course assessment effectively to enable learners to progress and achieve
  • prioritise safeguarding and ensure all learning outcomes are safe
  • make the learning experience central to syllabus delivery
  • throughout the learning experience, exemplify good practice

Trainers must promote good progress and outcomes by:

  • being aware of learners’ capabilities and their prior knowledge, and build on this
  • guiding learners to reflect on the progress they have made and their emerging needs
  • demonstrating knowledge and understanding of how learners learn and how this impacts on teaching
  • encouraging learners to take a responsible and conscientious attitude to their own study
  • promoting opportunities for active and reflective learning to enable learners to develop knowledge and skills
  • enabling learners to achieve their desired outcomes in a timely manner
  • develop learner’s analytical and critical thinking skills
  • encouraging and developing independent study skills
  • providing candidates with access to online resources / further reading to support learning
  • providing good information, advice and guidance before, during and after a course

 Responsibilities

Demonstrate good subject knowledge

Trainers should:

  • have a secure knowledge of the relevant subject area
  • foster and maintain learners’ interest in the subject, and address misunderstandings
  • demonstrate a critical understanding of developments in the subject area
  • demonstrate an understanding of and take responsibility for promoting high standards of practice
  • ensure teaching and assessment is up to date and conforms to current standards and guidelines
  • facilitate learners to improve their confidence, skill and understanding of first aid

Plan and teach well-structured lessons

Trainers should:

  • impart knowledge and develop understanding through effective use of the course outline
  • set further reading and plan other activities to consolidate and extend the knowledge and understanding learners have acquired
  • reflect systematically on the effectiveness of learning and approaches to teaching
  • contribute to the design and provision of an engaging syllabus within the field of first aid
  • make learning objectives explicit and share them with learners
  • ensure courses are well planned and conform to agreed standards
  • ensure different learning styles are accommodated in planning and delivery
  • ensure learning environments are purposeful and well managed

Adapt teaching to respond to the strengths and needs of all learners

Trainers should:

  • know when and how to differentiate appropriately, using approaches which enable learners to be taught effectively
  • have a secure understanding of how a range of factors can inhibit learners’ ability to learn, and how best to overcome these
  • demonstrate an awareness of the physical, social and intellectual development of learners, and know how to adapt teaching to support this
  • have a clear understanding of the needs of all learners, including those with special educational needs; those of high ability; those with English as an additional language; those with disabilities; and be able to use and evaluate distinctive teaching approaches to engage and support them

Make accurate and productive use of assessment

Trainers should:

  • know and understand how to assess the relevant subject area
  • make use of formative and summative assessment to evaluate learners’ progress
  • give learners ongoing feedback, both orally and through accurate marking, and encourage learners to respond to the feedback
  • ensure learners are matched to the most appropriate course for their needs
  • encourage and enable students to evaluate their own and others’ skills through practical activity
  • engage learners in their learning and give them verbal and developmental feedback

Manage conduct effectively to ensure a good and safe learning environment

Trainers should:

  • have clear rules and routines for conduct in the learning environment, promoting a consistent expectation of behaviour throughout the course
  • take responsibility for promoting respectful and considerate behaviour
  • have high expectations of conduct
  • manage teaching and learning sessions effectively, using approaches which are appropriate to learners’ needs in order to involve and motivate them
  • maintain good relationships with learners, exercise appropriate authority, and act decisively when necessary
  • maintain high rates of learner punctuality and good attendance
  • keep a good pace and start and finish sessions on time
  • listen and respond to the concerns of learners
  • encourage discussion and collaboration

Fulfil wider professional responsibilities

Trainers should:

  • engage in continuing professional development and continually evaluate own professional practice
  • promote best practice in first aid training and share this across the industry
  • work closely with external agencies and industry bodies to develop learner opportunities
  • engage with training technology to enhance the learning experience and adapt to changes in industry regulations

Good Practice

Delivery & Structure

Our qualifications are based on the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) training standard for delivery of First Aid at Work (FAW) courses for the purposes of the Health and Safety (First Aid) Regulations 1981.

All regulated qualifications contain mandatory units of learning, these must be achieved over a maximum period (as stated in the course outline).  Full details of the assessed units for each course are available on our website.  Learning time consists of a combination of guided learning hours and self directed study.  Guided learning hours are the contact time a typical learner will require in direct trainer guidance to complete their programme of learning successfully.  This will differ for each course.  Learners will also be encouraged to do self directed study away from the course, such as reading course material/handouts and researching information on the Internet.

Recognition of Prior Learning

RPL is a process for recognising learning from previous training, qualifications or experience to avoid duplication of learning. It considers whether a Learner can demonstrate and prove that they meet the assessment requirements for a unit through knowledge, understanding or skills they already possess and do not need to develop through a course of learning.

RPL must be: valid, reliable, authentic, current, sufficient.

It is our responsibility to make sure we do not disadvantage a Learner or compromise the integrity of the qualification when using the RPL process. If sufficient understanding of a subject is in doubt training must take place. Evidence of prior training submitted for RPL consideration must be authenticated; a certificate is not valid without referenced learning outcomes or evidence from the original training provider.

Entry Requirements

Learners must be at least 14 years old on the first day of the training (16 years for AED courses). There are no other formal entry requirements but to benefit from the learning we advise that Learners have a basic level of understanding in literacy and numeracy.

 Assessment

As a Qualsafe centre, we must make sure all learners have proper access to assessment and are given equal opportunities to demonstrate their competence.  If a reasonable adjustment or special consideration has been made, e.g. written/theory assessments have been completed verbally if required, we are obliged to mitigate risk in line with QA policies and complete a Reasonable Adjustment Form/Special Consideration Request Form, provided by Qualsafe.  Trainers will then upload the completed Reasonable Adjustment Form/Special Consideration Request Form when requesting certification.

A range of informal assessment procedures are used by Trainers/Assessors during the learning process to measure each Learner’s knowledge, skills and understanding related to the assessment criteria.  Theoretical assessments carry minimum pass marks, however, when a Learner achieves this minimum, Trainers will be expected to make a professional judgement as to whether that Learner has achieved all the assessment criteria. Trainers should use all assessment evidence available, including formative and practical assessments, to reach this judgement.

Requalification requirements

Qualifications are valid for a period of 3 years (with the exception of Allergy Awareness, which is 1 year). The Learner needs to retake the qualification before the certificate expiry date to remain qualified. In order to attend a requalifying course, Learners must produce their current or previous recently expired certificate. The certificate should be in a format as accepted by HSE. Requalification training is subject to a set number of contact hours excluding breaks.

If the Learner’s previous FAW certificate will have expired by more than one month at the start of FAW requalification course, the Centre must, in advance, provide the Learner/their Employer with the following information:

  • The syllabus of requalification courses is covered at a significantly faster pace in the understanding that learners are familiar with the topics.
  • Health and Safety Executive (HSE) guidance is clear that if an employee’s FAW certificate expires, they are “no longer considered competent to act as a first-aider in the workplace”. For this reason, you should make every effort to requalify a first aider before the certificate expires.
  • Employers and Learners should be aware that there is an increased risk of failing to achieve the required standard if previous certification has expired by a considerable period (HSE defines this as in excess of 1 month). If this is the case, HSE recommends “it may be prudent to complete a 3 day course”.

Qualification approval requirements

As a centre, we are required to:

  • have appropriate policies, systems and procedures in place
  • appoint suitable individuals to train, assess and quality assure our QA qualifications
  • have suitable and adequate venues, equipment and learning resources
  • Trainers and assessors must have occupational knowledge and competency in first aid as well as knowledge and competency to train/assess.
  • Internal quality assurers must have knowledge and competency in first aid as well as knowledge and competency in quality assurance
  • register learners with the Awarding Organisation prior to the course start date
  • maintain adequate learner to trainer ratios (12:1 max)
  • follow an agreed delivery plan for all regulated courses
  • provide learners with a suitably approved reference book
  • assess Learner knowledge and competence in relation to the learning outcomes and detailed assessment criteria for each unit of the qualification and record results accordingly
  • give Learners feedback on progress and how they might be able to improve
  • invigilate all theory assessments under examination conditions
  • negotiate with the Awarding Organisation if a reasonable adjustment or special consideration has to be made
  • maintain all Learner documents for a period of 3 years
  • be subject to external monitoring for each approved course we deliver

How we monitor the impact of this policy on the quality of learning, teaching and assessment

The impact of this policy on the quality of learning, teaching and assessment will be monitored through our quality assurance activities, which aim to establish consistently good teaching, learning and assessment.

These activities include:

  • Observations of learning, teaching and assessment
  • Performance management processes, including regular monitoring of trainer and assessor performance
  • Learner feedback
  • Audits
  • Moderation and standardisation processes

Expectations for behaviour in the learning environment

Learners are expected to treat each other and the trainer/assessor with common courtesy, decency and respect. They should refrain from behaviours that interfere with the teaching or learning process. All behaviours that, in the judgment of the trainer, interfere with the teaching or learning process may be considered disruptive.

Learners should recognise that the course trainer is the leader of the class and is in charge of instruction. Students must respect the trainer’s authority to lead and to direct the classroom activities. Attempts to dispute the trainer’s authority may be considered disruptive.

During course registration, trainers should outline any procedures and regulations for the duration of the course, including compulsory attendance hours, housekeeping arrangements such as planned break times and smoking policies etc.

Procedures for dealing with instances of disruption or abuse

Fortunately serious problems with difficult or disruptive clients are quite rare.  However, the welfare of trainers and other candidates is of paramount importance to Safe Hands First Aid Training Ltd. This protocol has been drawn up to advise staff of appropriate action to take when dealing with violent or abusive clients.  

If a trainer or candidate feels threatened with violence or abuse they should, if they feel it is safe to do so, try and diffuse the situation by talking through the issue with the individual. If someone is angry, upset or difficult, the trainer should try and calm the situation, but not feel the need to come up with an instant answer. If this does not diffuse the situation and they continue to feel threatened, or they feel there could be a risk to others, they should remove themselves from the immediate threat and notify the Police.

When faced with disruptive behaviour in the learning environment, the trainer should keep her/his own emotional reactions under control and to refrain from using abusive language.  It is very important that the trainer not engage in a physical confrontation with a candidate except for self-defence or for preventing injury to other leaners. The ability of the trainer to keep calm may help to prevent escalation of the behaviour.

Learners may respond better to an initial private discussion of the issue than they will to being put in an embarrassing situation before others.

  • In the first instance, trainers should use a range of distraction and positive reinforcement techniques to diffuse the situation and get the group back on course
  • If appropriate to do so, the trainer should approach the candidate to try and elicit what the problem is and find a solution
  • Ultimately, disruptive learners will be advised by the trainer that they may not be allowed to complete the course and that their employer will be informed of this if relevant

The trainer may ask the offending candidate to leave if her/his continued disruptive behaviours are compromising the teaching and learning process. The trainer should state clearly to the learner what behaviours are disruptive and give them the option of returning after s/he regains control. The trainer should also inform the student of the consequences if the disruptive behaviour continues e.g they may not be able to complete / pass the course and their employer may be informed.

If the candidate refuses to leave when asked, the trainer may leave the classroom and call the Police to remove the candidate. The trainer will not try to physically remove the candidate. If the trainer believes that the other candidates are in any danger due to the situation, s/he may cancel the session and send them away.

Effective Ways of Dealing with Disruptive Students:

  • Never attribute to malice what can be attributed to ignorance—most of the time students are not trying to be malicious and often are not aware that they are being disruptive. A simple request for them to return to the task at hand is all that is needed;
  • Younger students may exhibit behaviors that were acceptable in high school or at least went uncorrected. They are often surprised that trainers are bothered by these behaviors.  Help explain that the adult learning environment expects more adult like behaviour;
  • See all conflicts as an opportunity to educate the student(s) involved;
  • If at all possible, trainers should deal with any significant issues of disruption or disagreement in private. Dealing with an issue in front of others can unwittingly, bring others into the discussion. You don’t need others taking sides;
  • A range of techniques can be used to re-focus the group on the learning including positive reinforcement such as “I would appreciate it if you would not talk when I am talking…”;
  • Be professional and stay calm; delay speaking with the student until you are calm;
  • Put yourself in the student’s shoes—try to see what their motivation is, what would cause them to be disruptive, or have this problem or issue;
  • Listen carefully—ask clarifying questions that help to define the issue. “I want to make certain that I understand what you are saying, is this what you mean?”;
  • Think win-win. Ask the students how they would resolve the issue—this will give them some ownership. Also ask how they would handle the situation if they were the instructor;
  • Make certain that your position is clearly defensible. Just because “you say so” is not always a good reason;
  • Avoid the introduction of side issues. Keep bringing the learner back to the issue at hand. Other issues can be dealt with at another time;
  • Be as consistent as you can in how you handle each individual matter. This includes how you handle even small disruptions in class;
  • Offer the student the option of taking their issue to the next level. Tell him/her who to talk to and how they can contact them. If the policy in question is an Awarding Organisation regulation, say so—indicate you are not in a position to alter these;
  • Keep notes on the conversation(s) that you have with the learner. This will help to protect you and make it clear to the students that you want an accurate record of the interaction(s) you have with them.

Dealing with an Incident involving an Injury

If a client injures themselves, either unintentionally or through self harm, the trainer present should assess the situation and call for support from a colleague or the emergency services if necessary.  

After an incident, the Director will ensure that appropriate support is offered to trainer(s) affected. The Director will review the incident and consider whether there are any lessons to be learned for the future. All incidents/near misses must be reported on an Accident Form.

Risk Assessment

Safe Hands First Aid Training Ltd will carry out regular risk assessment of the likelihood that trainers and candidates may be subject to violent or abusive behaviour from other learners or other clients. Reference will be made to HSE guidance on Lone Working. This assessment will be reviewed regularly in light of local circumstances and events.

The risk assessment should identify the controls required to ensure that the risk is reduced. These controls may include, but are not limited to, specific training, modification of the environment, changes to working practices and issuing of personal alarms and mobile phones.

Monitoring & Review

The procedures set out in this policy will be widely promoted and are mandatory for everyone involved in Safe Hands First Aid Training Ltd. Failure to comply with the policy and procedures will be addressed without delay and may ultimately result in dismissal/exclusion from the company.

We will monitor all of the feedback that we receive in relation to the issues affected by this policy and will amend this policy as necessary.

This policy will be reviewed annually as well as following:

  • changes in legislation and/or government guidance
  • as a result of any other significant change or event.

 Dated: 12.06.2015

Next review:  June 2016