Can a Moderator Assess or Train the same learners

Can a Moderator Train and Assess the Same Learners?


SAQA policy has often been interpreted as saying that a Moderator cannot facilitate and evaluate his own students’ assessments (be the “same person”). Others, however, would argue that the trainer is doing formative assessments in the classroom with the learner and is therefore doubling as an evaluator.


To resolve this puzzle, we looked at the definition of Formative and Summative assessments. OBET (Outcomes Based Education and Training) makes use of formative and summative assessments.

  • Formative assessment refers to assessment that takes place during the process of learning and teaching.
  • Summative assessment is assessment for making a judgment about achievement. This is carried out when a learner is ready to be

assessed at the end of a program of learning.


We then compared the two types of assessment process as below:


A formative assessment
• Is designed to support the teaching and learning process.
• Assists in planning further learning.
• Diagnoses the learner’s strength and weaknesses.
• Provides feedback to the learner on his/her progress.
• Helps measure a learner’s readiness to do a summative (or final) assessment.

  • Is developmental in nature.
    • Is not for the purpose of awarding credits/certificates.


A summative assessment

  • Usually occurs at the end of a learning program and would result in a qualification, unit standard, or part-qualification.
    • Is used to determine whether the learner is competent or not yet competent.
    • Usually occurs after a specified period of study, e.g. one year in knowledge- and inputs-based systems.
  • Is carried out when the assessor and the learner agree that the learner is ready for assessment

    In OBET, learner-readiness determines when assessments will take place. All formative activities/assessments completed in the class are presented to the Qualified Assessor who will assess these activities as part of his role and as part of the Assessment Process.


From the statements above the following is clear:
• Formative assessment is part of a preparation process, not an actual assessment process.
• You cannot award credits/competency certificates on formative assessments. It’s completed by a facilitator, not an assessor as required by the SAQA policy.
• Formative assessments are part of a process of preparation of the learner for assessment. The evaluator cannot use the facilitator’s comments as part of his assessment decision. They are a recommendation on the readiness of the learner before the assessment process start. The assessor will have to re-assess the formative activities and reach his or her own findings.
• Summative assessment is then the process where the qualified assessor looks at all the evidence (even the formative evidence provided by the trainer) and reaches his own decision.
• As per the SAQA POLICY, a SETA can add to any policy in order to meet additional ETQA requirements. So the only way this rule that a Trainer cannot be the Moderator can be applied is if a SETA mentions in its Moderation Policy that a Trainer cannot be the same person as the Moderator. No SETA can implement this rule if they do not officially include it in their policy.


Therefore, according to us, a Moderator and the Trainer can be the same person. It’s fair, valid, reliable and practicable because an independent person assesses the learner. The Moderator only confirms the assessment process was followed and the outcome was correct.