ASTI policy on assessment was first formulated in 1988. Convention motion 156 stated that:

The ASTI rejects any extension of the use of school-based assessment for certification purposes in the national examination system.”

The ASTI policy on assessment is based on the principle that the State certificate examination system should be valid, objective and equitable. There should be a variety of techniques of assessment to evaluate the student’s level of skills and test the student’s knowledge of the various subjects. Teachers should not, however, assess their own pupils for the purpose of awarding them a mark in the State certificate examinations.

The ASTI supports the use of orals, aurals and assessment of practical and project work in public certificate examinations provided that these techniques involve external setting of questions, external administration, and external marking. The ASTI insists on these conditions for the following reasons:

  1. The setting, administration and marking of the examinations must be perceived by pupils, parents, employers, training agencies and third level colleges to be totally objective and impartial.
  2. It is the view of the ASTI that the use of school-based assessment by the pupil’s own teacher for certification purposes has negative consequences for teaching time, the role of the teacher and the pupil-teacher-parent relationship.
  3. The introduction of school-based assessment by the pupil’s own teacher for certification purposes undermines the perception of the teacher by the pupil as an advocate rather than as a judge in terms of nationally certified examinations.
  4. The external assessment procedures currently in use in the Junior and Leaving Certificate examinations have stood the test of time. Exam results thus arrived at are, and will remain, well established reference points for employment, training and third level placement and have international acceptability.
  5. External assessment for certification in Ireland has proved its worth in an educational system characterised by excellent standards and sound educational and human values. The superimposing of school-based assessment by the pupils’ own teacher for certification into Irish educational culture and tradition, just because it is practiced in other countries, is an unsound argument.



ASTI Policy on Classroom-Based Assessments in the Framework for Junior Cycle

Convention 2016 passed the following motion:

That ASTI members refuse to assess their own students for school certification (the Junior Cycle Profile of Achievement)”


ASTI Policy on Oral Examinations

Standing Committee issued a revised directive on oral examinations in the Junior Certificate in June 2016.

Click here for 2016 directive: