System of Assessment

The methodological commission of the Institute of Languages regularly works on the issues of upgrading the study programme content, forms and methods of teaching as well as the assessment criteria of students’ knowledge.
The system of assessment is based on the demands of the second level higher education standards. (Regulation No 481 of the Cabinet of Ministers as of November 20, 2001, paragraphs 29-32).
 The results of the assessment of the students’ knowledge are discussed at the meetings of the Council of the Institute of Languages and taken into consideration for further enhancement of the study process.

The fundamental principles of assessment are:
•    The principle of summarising the positive achievements,
•    The principle of mandatory testing,
•    The principle of publicity and clarity of assessment criteria,
•    The principle of diversity of assessment forms,
•    The principle of assessment accessibility.

The assessment system of accomplishing the tasks and objectives of the study programme is shown in the table given below.

1The graduate of Professional Master Studies should have knowledge of translation theory, lexicology and stylistics, machine translation, functional communication, research methodology, a second foreign language to be used in everyday work.   Student polls; test and examination results
2The graduates should develop the following practical skills:
-    the ability to understand and translate different regulations and instructions issued by the Cabinet of Ministers of the Republic of Latvia, as well as EU documentation and regulations;
-    the ability to use the knowledge acquired during the studies and fieldwork when writing their course projects and the Master Paper;
-    the ability to use relevant computer software in the implementation of translation projects. 
Study tasks, reports on students’ fieldwork and evaluation of the Master Paper.
3The graduates should be able:
-    to understand the essence of a problem, and by undertaking the necessary activities participate in solution of the problem or implementation of the project;
-    apply the knowledge acquired during the study process in their further professional work;
-    continuously upgrade their further professional competence. 
The graduates and employers’ polls; references received from the employers.

The principal forms of evaluating the knowledge obtained while mastering the programme subjects are examinations and/or credit tests which are taken at the end of each course. The forms of assessment are determined by the study programme.
Examinations are arranged by the academic staff members who have delivered the respective courses or by other lecturers appointed by the head of the respective structural unit. At the examinations students’ knowledge and skills are assessed according to a ten-grade scale applying approved criteria.
At a credit test the acquired knowledge is assessed according to a binary evaluation scale – “tested” or “not tested”. The test is conducted by the teacher who has delivered the course to the students. In addition to the final test, regular tests are also held during the study course, namely presentations at seminars, students’ portfolios, etc. Regular tests are included in the curricula of the study courses.
Fieldwork is assessed on the basis of students’ presentation of the fieldwork reports and considering the employers’ references.
Credit points are given for each covered study course and the fieldwork if the received evaluation is not lower than “a four” (almost average) or “tested”.
Detailed information about the structure of the study programme, the assessment criteria, organisation of the fieldwork, and the demands for the defence of the Master Paper is presented at the first lecture of the study course. Additional information on conditions, demands and issues of study course finals can be obtained from programme administration and members of the academic staff. The study programme is concluded with the defence of the Master Paper.

The criteria for the evaluation of the Master Paper are the following:
•    systematisation, consolidation and enhancement of the theoretical knowledge and experience;
•    analysis of topical translation problems;
•    elaboration of practical solutions;
•    ability to define the theoretical approach for the solution of the investigated problem, to select and present strategies of research, to draw relevant conclusions, to prove the  novelty of the research;
•    the independent studies of literature and other sources of information.

A diploma of professional Master Degree is awarded to a student who has fully completed the study courses envisaged by the programme and who has passed the Final Examination with a mark not less than “a four” (almost average).
The above mentioned assessment system has been used at RTU since the academic year 2001/2002 and has justified itself by ensuring a greater clarity and evaluation compliance with the students’ skills and knowledge.
The students’ progress and the achieved results are regularly analysed and discussed at the meetings of the Council of the Institute of Languages. Special attention is paid to the results of the defence of the Master Paper.