Translating research into good practices

International experts in the field of hidden impairments, for over 20 years, with wide-scale academic and clinical experience have designed Do-IT Profiler’s modular system.

The experts in learning and disability, led by Professor Amanda Kirby and Dr Ian Smythe have delivered large-scale research programmes, published peer reviewed papers and books and delivered training at masters level to over 50,000 professionals and are respected in their field of work.

Working with top computer scientists using the latest technological advances, they have moved on from traditional assessment approaches which only look at aspects in a linear fashion to develop individualised and contextualised assessment approaches, integrating information from multiple sources to provide truly personalised plans and guidance.

Challenges with current approaches

Linear assessments often assess in isolation one aspect of learning and not take into context the environment the individual is learning or living in. e.g. someone with no transport may have the skills for a job, but not the means of getting to it. Another example is a student living in poor housing may have nowhere to study, and this is the reason they are failing despite adequate skills. The ability to integrate information from multiple sources means that a true picture of functioning and skills can be achieved.

Some assessments currently take a global view of a skill, e.g. look at numeracy as a whole, without analysing where the skills are lacking and to ensure the assessment is truly testing what it is supposed to. E.g. if a maths assessment requires reading to complete it, then if someone has reading difficulties, this could lead to poor scores because lack of comprehension. The Profiler enables the assessment to focus on the actual task in hand.

Development of an assessment

This starts from the evidence base in the field nationally and internationally, working with other experts to ensure robust development.

A phased development includes piloting, amending, trialling, checking for accessibility and usability, field testing, internal validation and external validation; before release.