The ASDAN Certificate of Personal Effectiveness (CoPE) is a nationally recognised qualification. The qualification offers imaginative ways of accrediting young people's activities. It promotes and allow examination centres to record a wide range of personal qualities, abilities and achievements of young people, as well as introducing them to new activities and challenges.
CoPE is an optional course for students at Key Stage 4 and students follow the course at level 1 or 2. Level 2 equates to a GCSE standard award at grade 5.
CoPE comprises 12 modules, each of which is divided into three sections. Each section should take 10 hours, which is worth one credit. Students need 12 credits to gain the Certificate of Personal Effectiveness. For CoPE Level 1, challenges can come from Section A, B or C; for CoPE Level 2, at least six of the credits must be chosen from the longer challenges of Sections B and C.
The module titles are:
What skills will students develop and demonstrate?
By building a Portfolio of Evidence as they complete various challenges, students must demonstrate competence at Level 1 or 2 in the following skills: Introduction to Working with Others, Introduction to Improving own Learning and Performance, Introduction to Problem Solving, Planning and Carrying out a Piece of Research, Communication through Discussion and Planning and Giving an Oral Presentation.
CoPE aims to assess and develop a student’s personal skills. Through a series of projects, students will find themselves challenged in a variety of ways e.g. personal confidence, team working skills, learning how they learn, presenting skills, debating and researching. Students learn how to interact and are encouraged to take a high level of responsibility for their learning. Through this learner-driven curriculum, students experience projects that are beyond the normal experiences of a classroom, in doing so, enriching their CV and increasing their employability.
Students on the CoPE course are provided with structure and taught how to access the skill-based assessment criteria. Lesson content is focused on the process and the assessment criteria rather than set topics. At all times, students are encouraged to choose their own topics whilst progressing through the skills based assessments.
Students are assessed according to how they develop their personal skills rather than how much knowledge they have gained and how well they understand the topic.
Six personal skills are assessed through different challenges of varying length (5, 10 or 20 hours): Oral Presentation, Discussion, Research, Working with Others, Improving Own Learning and Performance and Problem Solving.
Topics for challenges need to adhere to guidelines but can be chosen by the students. Students need to complete 120 hours of course work (12 credits) in total.
There is no wriiten examination for this course. Students complete a detailed portfolio of their progress. Portfolio evidence needs to indicate a level of personal responsibility and learning that is worthy of a Grade 5 at GCSE.