The following discussion focuses on the middle three ratings, which are applied most often during the day-to-day work of state assessors conducting NQS assessments.
The NQS assessments measure quality through a complex, multi-level process, combining fixed procedural rules with professional judgements on the part of the assessor.
If any element Is assessed as 'Not met', a rating of Working Towards NQS Is automatically assigned to the relevant standard, quality area and to the service overall.
In summary, the assessment and rating process Involves two points at which the assessors must exercise professional judgement; In determining whether an element Is 'Met' or 'Not met', and then In determining whether a standard Is Meeting NQS or Exceeding NQS (if all the constituent elements are 'Met').
To engage with the difficult task of producing valid, reliable judgements of quality, the NQS assessment and rating process has drawn on established practices from educational research using standardised observational scales (Rothman et al.
These strategies have been applied in the NQS assessment process, with all authorised officers required to undergo training, a 'reliability test' and 'drift testing' (ACECQA, n.
This minor study used detailed content analysis, to examine how the Instrument describes differences in quality levels for the NQS.
The element occurs 'sometimes' at Working Towards NQS, and 'consistently' at Exceeding NQS.
The element Is present for 'children' at Working Towards NQS; and for 'each child' at Meeting and Exceeding NQS.