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Our Level 1 Exam format

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 
Bob was asking why it takes so long to get our results.

I'm not sure this was a typical exam format. We had a single examiner come to our mountain and the canidates were all from our SS. We had taken our exam prep clinic here at our mountain as well.

Most of the 7 examinee's were a bundle of nerves when we arrived at 8:30 for the one day exam.

We got to see the score card at the beginning of the morning, and then we never saw a card again.

After the written portion, we were all expecting a "Exam" as in "now we are going to do the gliding wedge demos" and have someone stand there and score each person as they came down. then the next demo, etc..

Instead we just skied as a group. mixing up free skiing, with let's do a rotating line of "wedge cristies" then some free skiing to another location "linked wedge turns". more free skiing to an appropriate location and "gliding wedge-braking wedge" It was almost like we were just practicing for the final. Either he was taking small notes or scoring us mentally. We were able to talk talk, encourage and assist each other through the whole process.

We did small, medium, large turns in the context of free skiing or follow the leader exercises. He got to see us all just free ski some.

Then the teaching portion we were given tasks to work with and teach. The "class size" was real small which helped a lot. Then we did our MA on a small hill with lots of kids skiing around. Talked about what we saw and what we would do to fix. and that was it.

So I guess since the scoring is a "formal paper process" and our examiner did not carry all the paper out on the hill, and formally score us as we went along, he needs to put it on the paper score card, add up the results and record them before he can "give us the news"

Does this differ a great deal from the other area exams? I actually enjoyed the day much more than I expected I would. It was a relaxed format and I learned a lot as well as got a lot of skiing in. [img]smile.gif[/img]
post #2 of 13
Interesting, DChan--here in the Rocky Mountain division, we have little miniature score cards for each candidate, on which we make notes throughout the day. At the end of the day, we transcribe those notes to the official score sheets, along with our scores for each maneuver and each section. It's time-consuming, but we consider it important to get the results out to the candidates at the end of the exam, as soon as possible, while the experience is still fresh in their minds, and in order to give them an opportunity to discuss the results with us that same day.

Each examiner does it a little differently. Some are better than others at keeping notes "in their heads." But we have made it mandatory that all examiners make written notes throughout the exam, because of some perceived problems in years past. The perception, whether true or not, was that examiners made some real mistakes due to memory lapses, or worse, that they threw scores on one person based on memories of what ANOTHER person did.

So now we all keep notes!

Different examiners conduct the day differently too. Some will go through the skiing tasks, in sequence, one-at-a-time, waving each candidate down when ready and taking notes. Others will be looser, as you described.

Surprisingly, from my experience following other examiners around and having others follow me, there is a lot more consistency in the results and actual scoring than you might expect, despite differences in methodology. When I was an Apprentice Examiner (first year after examiner selection), I audited a number of examiners in various levels of exams. Despite 7-10 skiing tasks for each exam candidate--hundreds of individual scores--we were NEVER more than 2 points apart, ALMOST never more than 1 point apart, and probably 95% of the time we threw the exact same score. And we never even once disagreed on our final judgement of Pass or Fail. I was actually surprised! Some of the examiners I followed I expected to see eye-to-eye with me. Others I suspected might disagree. But we didn't!

It was a good validation of the process.

Best regards,
Bob Barnes
post #3 of 13
Thread Starter 
Our examiner was taking written notes and several times he rode up the chair by himself. (I suspect to take notes) After lunch he excused himself early (I'm sure to write down more notes) and during several of our "rotating lines" he positioned himself way off and I'm sure was taking notes then too. It just wasn't real obvious so it really put the group at ease and made the day much more fun.
post #4 of 13
Despite other criticisms I may have about what and how, and sometimes even why, PSIA certifies, it has always been a source of comfort that in 10+ years of examining, I rarely witnessed disparity in marks. When we differed, it was over political correctness, if you get my meaning.

I would speak in defense of West's practice of giving out results after the tests. It gives the examiner time to collect his/her thoughts and provide useful feedback to each candidate. There is a school of thought that believes that the candidate is paying for an evaluation, not auditioning for the pin.

Also, when I took the tests in school--you know PSAT, SAT, MAT, LSAT, etc.--as I recall I waited 6 weeks or more for the results.

In fact, I attended college at a place that didn't give us our grades until after we'd graduated!

Somehow, I think it puts emphasis on the real value of taking the test.
post #5 of 13
Thread Starter 
Good points. We did get lots of feedback during the exam process. That part was very helpful. Since there were 7 of us and only one examiner however we ran out of time to get "hint's and tips" about our free skiing and where we can improve. Hopefully we will get some of that at a later date.
post #6 of 13
Congrats dchan, on to level 2!
post #7 of 13
dchan- I would echo much of Bob B comments. Here in the East as it sounds like alot of the other regions we really try to take the pressure off the canidates and make it as much fun as a validation can be! I personally feel doing the 1 by 1 call down make people uneasy and nervouse so like your eximaner I try to avoid that approach. I want to test your best performance not your worst. It also moves much faster if your not standing around waiting for call downs thus allowing more time to ski and coach. I do take notes and try to do that on lift rides. Or just quick comments I can write down as I'm going.

We have to give the results at the end of the day. Some interesting thoughts on delaying it that people mentioned, maybe we should kick that around.


<FONT COLOR="#800080" SIZE="1">[ February 25, 2002 12:01 PM: Message edited 1 time, by Todo ]</font>
post #8 of 13
In Central Division examiners use the pocket-sized score sheets Bob described and post results after all exams have ended, usually in a resort bar, along with handing out generic pins. A more polished printed report of the candidate's results gets mailed to each participant later, I believe.

Level I tests are two-day events. The clinic dchan mentioned participating in previously probably was what constitutes the first day of the Level I in Central.
post #9 of 13
Bob is the score card the same or changed? I remember RM had score describers borne out of a Trainers/Directors clinic in Breck. I think you were probably there. We watched video and score actual candidates from past exams. We created a scale from Satan to Santa and although the usual suspects exposed their proclivity toward one end of the spectrum to the other....in the end the scores were overwhelmingly consistant. I thought the describers really standardized the process.
Most examiners set the group up for success presuming pass until proven otherwise...the ski past w/scorecards seem to be a thing of the past, and really it isn't as subjective as some would lead you to believe. It is either there or it ain't. There is either sufficient demonstratable skill or there isn't.
D-chan...did Iman give you the option of the potfolio process? How was the feedback from the Prep clinic?
I hate the "we'll mail it to you approach". The Snowboarders started that crap in RM, citing the prolonged wait and too much nervous drinking with potential driving implications. BS! Sure there have been slashed tires, confrontation and abuse, but examining staff needs to be approachable, available and accountable to debrief and encourage in "real-time".

<FONT COLOR="#800080" SIZE="1">[ February 25, 2002 01:45 PM: Message edited 1 time, by Robin ]</font>
post #10 of 13
Thread Starter 
I read about the portfolio process but it was never brought up in our discussions. I suspect that because they were planning to bring the clinic and exam to us instead of us having to go somewhere else or schedule something on our own as well as having Mike to do some of the clinic prep stuff with us it was not really brought up as an option.

A lot of the people didn't understand that process either and some of them didn't understand that they needed to sign up for stuff. I think they just had to say I want my level 1 and everything would be "setup for them"

I liken it to the "give-me" attitude and not the "How can I get better? " attitude.
post #11 of 13
Thread Starter 
<BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Robin:
D-chan...did Iman give you the option of the potfolio process? How was the feedback from the Prep clinic?
I hate the "we'll mail it to you approach". The Snowboarders started that crap in RM, citing the prolonged wait and too much nervous drinking with potential driving implications. BS! Sure there have been slashed tires, confrontation and abuse, but examining staff needs to be approachable, available and accountable to debrief and encourage in "real-time".

We had good feedback during the exam and at the end of the exam and he did pretty much tell us we have nothing to worry about and we could go celebrate.

It was the "formal numbers" that we did not get yet.
post #12 of 13
Thread Starter 

Got my new "Bronze" shield. Wheeee..

Scores I guess were pretty good. The written is pass/no-pass. (no specific score) skiing- 26, teaching 22. Better than a squeek, but got some good feedback and some things to work on. (might be also a bit of lazy demos, better work on that) and of course more experience will help on the teaching side. It's kind of hard to get lots of experience working 2 days a week and only teaching 2-3 classes on average each weekend. Too bad so few people are taking lessons. I sure hope after a lesson with us the passion is ignited and they come back for more.

I'll be looking for more hints as always for teaching progressions. Stand by [img]tongue.gif[/img]
post #13 of 13
With your talent ...... how could ya miss? :

BTW .... had my last class on Saturday and it was also my worst (nightmare) of the year. A family from Pakistan and most of them did not speak English. The kids were wild and were all over the place. At the 15 minute mark, two of the teen girls bolted for the chairlift .... actually "crashed their way gradually" to the chair was more like it. At the half hour mark I was left with one of the initial seven. He was an 11 year old and at least the two of us had fun for the remaining hour.

Any suggestions D .... other than run?
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