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£200K assessment innovation fund opens for next round of applications

£200K assessment innovation fund opens for next round of applications

A charitable fund offering up to £200K to help develop new and innovative approaches to assessment has opened for new applications.

The Assessment Innovation Fund, created by the educational charity and leader in vocational and technical education NCFE, is for any organisation with an idea and interest in transforming the current education system.

Eligibility includes, but isn’t limited to, training providers, qualification developers, awarding bodies, quality assurers, EdTech companies, and colleges, and successful projects must be completed by the end of May 2024.

Previous successful projects have included research into digital badges, the use of virtual reality in assessments, and how immersive and interactive storytelling can engage hard-to-reach students who don’t respond to mainstream education.

Jessica Blakey, Head of Innovation and Investments at NCFE, said: “Through the Assessment Innovation Fund, our vision is to break the boundaries of assessment and support and investigate potential solutions that will deliver the best possible experience for our learners.

“Projects from previous successful applications are now in progress, with exciting findings that are helping to shape smarter learning. We’re continuing to invest in piloting new and innovative approaches to assessment – including testing out new ideas and exploring the use of technology.

“But the work doesn’t stop there. If you have an innovative idea that is ready to test at scale, we’d love to hear about your project.”

NCFE is dedicated to promoting and advancing learning, believing that great innovation needs great collaborators. That’s why it launched the Assessment Innovation Fund in 2021 – investing £1 million across a range of pilots, both in the UK and overseas.

To support new applicants to the Assessment Innovation Fund, NCFE is hosting two online workshops in April and May that will help explain the process further and offer the chance to ask questions, including around suitable ideas, scoring, and how the final decision will be made.

The current funding window is open to expressions of interest until 23 May. To find out more about the Assessment Innovation Fund, submit your interest, or register for an online workshop, visit

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