7.0 Baseline Computing Assessment

UPDATED [9th September 2016]

This is a range of assessment activities to assess learners against the Computing Progression Pathways by Computing at School. To use the activities a basic knowledge of Google Forms and Sheets is assumed and guides on these tools are freely available online.

Once purchased you have unlimited use of these resources within your school, they are not limited by number of students and there is no yearly subscription. Once the assessment activities have been purchased they are for sole use by the named school only and may not be shared outside of that organisation. A separate Google Form is set up for each school and any unauthorised sharing may be tracked to the individual concerned.

The Baseline Computing Assessment consists of three student activities and a Teacher’s Tracker spreadsheet. The three student activities consist of the following:

  • Baseline Test – This is a self-marking Google Form, it gives students instant feedback with the exception of free text answers as this feature does not exist within the Google Forms framework.
  • Scratch Programming Activities – Two teacher-assessed programming activities in Scratch.
  • Desktop Publishing Activity – This is a teacher-assessed IT based activity in which students are required to improve and evaluate a given poster.

It is estimated that all assessment activities should be completed in three to four lessons, depending on ability.

The Teacher’s Tracker is an Excel Spreadsheet designed to track learners’ progress. When statements are awarded levels are automatically generated for each strand of the Computing curriculum along with an overall level on the Overview sheet. Strands assessed are as follows:

  • Algorithms
  • Programming & Development
  • Data & Data Representation
  • Hardware & Processing
  • Communication & Networks
  • Information Technology

Once the responses from the Baseline Test are copied and pasted into the Teacher’s Tracker, each of the relevant statements is automatically populated and a Computing Level is awarded automatically.

These resources, along with guidance on usage can be purchased using the link below or from the store page. Once you have purchased the resources you will be prompted to provide a valid Google email address and your school name so a Baseline Test can be set up. Please allow 48 hours after purchase for this to be received. All other resources can be downloaded immediately.

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33 thoughts on “7.0 Baseline Computing Assessment

  1. Adam C

    I am trying to open the One Note package in OneNote 2010 and it does not open as it says the file was created in a previous version of OneNote

  2. Nicki Post author

    Hi Adam, thanks for letting me know. I actually created it in OneNote 2013. I’ve now added a link to an unpackaged version to the page which should work in older versions of OneNote.

  3. Adam C

    How would this work in terms of assigning the task to students and then saving and marking the tests?

  4. Alison Miller

    Hi Nikki,

    I have downloaded the Assessment but for some reasons the Scratch files won’t open – is there something that I am doing wrong? Fantastic resources – thanks.

  5. Nicki Post author

    @Adam The file is saved on a shared area with an identical tab for each child. They can all simultaneously edit their own pages to complete the assessment and they just close when finished. OneNote saves and synchronises automatically throughout. I actually use this for the submission of all my students’ work.

  6. Miss Hasan

    Hi, My One Note will not open this link up at all! I know it’s a pain but is there any way you have this in a different format? It would be really helpful! Thank you

  7. Sharon Williams

    This looks superb! Please can you advise – is it suitable for all ability levels or would it need some tweaking for differentiation for lower ability? How long would you allocate for this? Our lessons are one hour long


  8. james

    Hi Nicki,

    Great idea with the assessment and i really like the idea of using one note to gather responses easily, however is it possible for pupils to access someone elses tab or is the a way this can be set up or is it just a trust thing.

    Thank you,


  9. Nicki Post author

    Thanks, I’m going to to use it for all ability year 7 to year 9. Really it’s aimed at year 7 but I’m going to use it on the other groups this year just so I can gauge where they’re at. My guess is that it would take two or maybe three lessons. With low ability groups I’d say definitely three lessons.

  10. Nicki Post author

    Hi James. Unfortunately it is impossible to restrict students accessing each other’s tabs so it’s a case of being vigilant and trusting them! If they make any changes on a page you can track it which is helpful.

  11. sue

    Hi Nikki
    Thanks for sharing your baseline assessment resource, it’s really helped our department of non specialists get a handle on using the CAS progression pathways. We are reporting levels, 3 times in the year. We are aiming to report the baseline assessment level, but as this will be considerably lower than the ICT level given last year, are also aiming to report a digital literacy/ICT level with it to years 8 & 9. As the test is only up to a 4b I was wondering how your levels were looking on average in year 8 & 9 and how you will be going about reporting levels to both parents and students? Also thanks for getting me looking at one note, it’s a great way to collect students work:)

  12. Linda Owens

    Hi, Thanks so much for sharing your fab resources Nicki. I am an ICT NQT and after 4 years of not teaching ICT I have finally got a job teaching ICT in a small school, yay! However, I am the only ICT teacher and am trying to get my head around all this programming. Your site has been invaluable, thanks again.

    Linda 🙂

  13. Nicki Post author

    Hi Sue, I’ve been marking some of these over half term and my year 9 class range from 3A to 3C, a considerable drop from their ICT levels but I have pre-warned management that this would be the case! I have recorded there starting levels and as long as I can show a significant amount of progress against this I’m hoping I won’t have any problems. I’m thinking about writing a letter to parents to explain the levels with a break-down of the strands.

  14. Sue

    Hi Nikki – I’m getting the same level outcomes in year 9 so good to know. The amount of marking is huge so I’m going to adapt it next year to be a multiple choice self marking quiz using our VLE – don’t get me wrong though, the test has been a life saver – so thanks again.

  15. Emmanuelle

    Hi Nicki, Have you used Onenote in other ways? with other teachers? with students? collaboratively? etc I am trying to implement Office365 but I cannot find many examples.

  16. Nicki Post author

    I was using it as a way of collecting-in students work but we now have Google Classroom as a VLE in school so I’m using that now instead. I do use OneNote for all my lesson planning, it’s brilliant for that.

  17. Shakira

    Hi Nikki, your resources are absolutely amazing. Thank you for sharing this with everyone.

    I wanted to know, on what basis do you give the students a level. Do you get a specific mark and then have grade boundaries based on the mark they attain or is it based on your judgement?

    Thank you again

  18. Nicki Post author

    With the assessment it’s just down to matching up what they have done with the CAS Progression Pathways. It was a bit tedious last year so I have actually made a new assessment that is much easier to mark, I’ll be uploading it here shortly.

  19. Abi

    Hi Nikki,

    Thank you for sharing your KS3 assessment tool and marking grid. Do you gather a separate level for Information Technology or combine that level with the other levels given in the computing strands? I know the spreadsheet generates a ‘Current Level’. Is there a way to separate the computing from the ICT?
    Also, do the points you have broken each level down into equate to the new points system for 1-9?

  20. Nicki Post author

    Hi Abi

    I use the CAS Progression Pathways for assessment of Computing and that includes an ICT strand within it. My spreadsheet doesn’t separate ICT from Computing as they are officially combined together now but feel free to edit the spreadsheet if you need this functionality. The current level it provides is on the new 1 to 9 grading system.



  21. Lou

    Hi Nicki

    How do you know your students have moved up a level – do they complete the baseline assessment again after you teach content or do you set an end of unit assessment that is mapped to the levels?


  22. Nicki Post author

    Hi Lou

    You just mark of their levels on their tracking sheets as they complete each topic, these are referenced within the schemes of work so you know what skills and knowledge to look for.


  23. Dale

    Fantastic idea for the initial assessment, would like to use it as a final assessment in my primary. Looked at the example one (non editable) but quite a few of the images are not displaying (some are like the first algorithm one). Are the images missing or is there an issue. Any chance of a copy of either the form and images or just a pdf I could work from?

  24. Louise T

    Hi Nikki

    Great resource. I am trying to copy the quiz to my Google Form but it won’t copy/paste. Any ideas?

  25. Nicki Post author

    I’m working on some adjustments to this at the moment so will post here at a later date and it should work nicely.

  26. Nadia

    Hi Niki

    Please when you get the chance, can you email me back, I have a few questions about your wonderful resource.



  27. sharon pendreigh

    Hi Nicky
    I tried this today and it showed 0/0 for the student’s scores? do I need to do something for the scores to add up and do I need to set up the students in the class?


  28. Nicki Post author

    The version currently shared on here is not self-marking and is intended just to be an example not to actually be used in class. If you have been using the link with your students the results will have gone to my Google Drive rather than yours. I am in the process of creating a self-marking version of this which will be available within the next few days. Hope that helps! Nicki

  29. Richard

    Hi Nicki,

    I have had a look at the information about your test and am interested. However the things that is causing me to really hesitate is the references to OneNote. We do not have access to that in school and thus would need a system that did not rely or use OneNote.

    Later comments seem to indicate the Google Drive or Classroom are now used but I wanted to be absolutely clear about what the requirements were before committing.

    Thank you.


  30. Nicki Post author

    Hi Richard

    Sorry for the delayed reply. OneNote is no longer used within the initial assessment, it is now done through Google Drive.

    Best wishes


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