The information below only refers to legacy Functional Skills. For administration information about our new reformed Functional Skills please visit our admin overview page.
OCR offers on-screen, on-demand assessment for Functional Skills at Levels 1 and 2 for English, maths and ICT.
Please refer to the Functional Skills qualification pages for more information on the structure and contents of qualifications.
To offer OCR on-screen tests, you need to become approved and then set up to use the on-screen test system, Surpass:
Once your centre is approved and set up in Surpass you can create your candidates within the on-screen test system. You do not need to make any other entries. For information on how to do this, read this article and view this video. Make sure you associate your candidates with all of the subjects they will be taking when they are created.
For Cambridge Technicals you make qualification and unit test entries via Interchange or A2C and we set the candidates up within Surpass for you.
The software required to deliver the on-screen tests is known as SecureClient. This must be installed on all test computers.
To confirm you can use SecureClient, check your computers meet the minimum specifications required as listed on the Secure Delivery screen. You can download SecureClient and view troubleshooting advice too.
To sit a test, each candidate has to be scheduled in Surpass. You can schedule tests in two ways: either using the schedule test wizard or in bulk from a csv file.
For every schedule created, one or more records are added to the Schedule tab. These can be viewed by session or by candidate and will be locked 24 hours before the start date. Once locked, a keycode is created for each scheduled candidate; you can view keycodes on the Invigilate tab (not all options on the Invigilate screen shown in the video are available). The candidates need to enter their keycodes to start their test and a PIN may optionally be used as well.
For Cambridge Technicals we will schedule the tests for the candidates you have made unit test entries for.
Before any test sitting the room should be set up and the equipment prepared taking the relevant instructions for conducting exams (OCR ICE or JCQ ICE) into account.
The Surpass knowledgebase includes a checklist for invigilators and useful information for invigilators preparing for a test sitting.
You can download tests in advance if the Internet connection is slow, unreliable or you want the tests to be sat offline.
The JCQ notice to candidates can be read out or be shared with the candidates.
During the test sitting, the invigilator can monitor the candidate’s progress from the Invigilate tab in Surpass from where it is possible to:
If any problems occur during the test sitting, refer to the troubleshooting information available and consider first trying a dry run using practice tests to become familiar with the process.
Practice tests allow you to familiarise yourselves with the assessments and give students an idea of the type of questions they may face in a live test. The practice tests run anonymously in a browser window and needs to have Flash player installed in the browser to run. The practice tests provide different degrees of feedback.
These practice tests are also available to be scheduled for learners in Surpass.
See the following page for more details of running practice tests
For all tests except Level 2 Cambridge Technicals in Digital Media unit 2C and Level 3 Cambridge Technicals in Performing Art unit 2C (see below), candidates use SecureClient to sit the test. In most cases, this restricts access to other applications on the computer.
The candidate navigates through the test entering their responses, accessing any linked source material and uploading worked files as required by the test. The time remaining is displayed at the top of the screen and warnings pop up at five and 15 minutes remaining.
The candidate can finish the test before the time expires and the completed test is uploaded if an Internet connection is present.
The tests show with a finished status in the Invigilate tab. Depending on the test, the result will either be available immediately in the Results tab or be available to an examiner for marking.
The results of all live and some practice tests are available to view in the Results tab in Surpass. Results will not be available for practice tests that require ‘human’ marking.
A number of reports including unofficial result slips for all tests and detailed learner feedback for certain qualifications can be generated.
All achievements and candidate marks (which are not available within Surpass) can be viewed in Interchange.
There are three easy steps to getting ICT Functional Skills on-screen tests right for your learners – it’s as easy as A, B, C:
Films can be viewed here to support learners in familiarising themselves with the features within OCR’s on screen assessments, including ‘In-app’ testing: