Kragujevac: In less than a year, BIPS (Business Innovation Programs) in Kragujevac organised, within the “Education to Employment” project, the “Basic Check“ testing for competency assessment of about 100 secondary school students.
This test for skills and knowledge assessment took place in the Secondary Vocational School and in Economics School in Kragujevac, and, in Vrnjačka Banja, 20 students of the Catering/Tourist School underwent the testing.
In the end of June, a group of third-grade students of the First Technical School in Kragujevac, department for the profession of a construction technician, also underwent the “Basic Check“.
This test is not easy, but it is useful
“It was hard for me to do the test because I am not good at mathematic,“ Aleksandra Jakovljević, a third-grader of the First Technical School in Kragujevac, said after being tested in the BIPS.
But she added that, on the other hand, it was much easier for her to resolve the tasks such as “linguistic comprehension” or “three-dimensional objects“.
She believes that the results of the Basic Check testing her competency level will help her plan her future career, learn what further knowledge she needs to continue her school to become a surveyor.
“This testing helps me to discover whether my wishes match my competency level,” Aleksandra, who never before received career counselling, said.
She said that she will follow the counsel she received from the career guidance experts, but that she will nevertheless keep to the road she has chosen for herself.
“The test was somewhat confusing. The questions in mathematic were the ones that were most difficult. I do not do well with mathematic,“ construction technician-to-be Filip Arsić said.
“BIPS career counsellor Lazar interpreted the test results for me and I will accept his advice for my further professional orientation,” Filip, who wishes to continue his education at the Higher School of Construction, said. He believes that, with this educational background, he will find a job more easily.
Students are interested in career counseling
The pedagogue and a member of the career guidance and counselling team in the First Technical School Aleksandra Radović said that the students of this school are interested in career counselling implemented in cooperation with BIPS.
“We have recently had workshops for group and individual counselling for more than 50 1st and 2nd grade students. In November, these workshops were attended by the 3rd and 4th grade students. Last year we implemented a career aptitude quiz according to the “Education to Employment” programme, and this year our students underwent the Basic Check competency test for the first time,” Aleksandra said.
She said that the First Technical School has more than 1300 students and that it is impossible to complete all professional orientation activities in school, which is why the support of BIPS and their career counselors is so important.
She announced that the Basic Check for the students of the First Technical School will continue in the beginning of the new school-year, along with other career guidance and counseling activities, and that they will keep a close watch on how much the counseling ‘tools’ have helped the students choose their future professions.
Basic check – For youth to identify their advantages
BIPS career counsellor Lazar Đoković said that the Basic Check test can be completed in 60 minutes under the supervision of a counsellor.
“The test contains the tasks in four areas. These are cognitive tasks with linguistic content, cognitive tasks with multidimensional content, numerical cognitive tasks, and tasks for assessment of the English language knowledge,” Lazar explained.
According to what he said, this test helps young people to distinguish their competences and understand their chance for development.
“It is not only the knowledge areas needing further work that they identify; they also detect their key advantages so that they could use them in the best way in their career. Moreover, it helps them in professional orientation and makes it easier for them to make a career choice,” Lazar said.
After they complete the test, the candidates are awarded certificates by the career counsellor who will interpret the test results and explain to them the competency assessment based on the results of the testing.
“These data are also useful for us, the counsellors, since we get a broader picture and get to know better the person concerned, how we can go on providing support to them and implement other activities and tools within the individual counselling process,” Lazar told us.
He added that, with the knowledge about competences under the Basic Check, young people can be counselled and guided with regard their future education or, if they do not intend to continue their education, on-the-job training which BIPS implements under the “Education to Employment” project.
Text and photo: Gordana Mirović / Edited by: Sandra Vlatković