Today marked a historical moment when Assessment Standards South Africa (ASSA) officially unveiled the test review system to assess the quality of psychological and non-psychological assessments. ASSA was founded in 2015 with the aim of promoting ethical and responsible use of assessments in South Africa. Representatives from PsySSA, SIOPSA and ATP collaborated to form a robust, streamlined online test review system benchmarked against international standards but with a strong focus on adapting these for South Africa.
In line with other similar organisations internationally, ASSA is not a statutory body. Rather the organisation is “an independent non-regulatory external assessments evaluation organisation working collaboratively with the support of local organisations to assist in implementing a robust, best practice and technology enabled process that can be used to review people assessment instruments and tests”. ASSA focusses on assessing the quality of psychological and non-psychological assessments to promote best practice in the country.
Speaking at the launch event, PsySSA President, Prof Shahnaaz Suffla, congratulated ASSA on this milestone achievement. She recognised PsySSA representatives on ASSA, Professors Sumaya Laher and David Maree, for their committed and excellent contributions to ASSA. Prof Suffla highlighted the importance of the work being undertaken at ASSA, especially in light of the abuses of psychological assessment in South Africa during apartheid. Further, she congratulated ASSA for the collaborative efforts across sub-disciplines and organisations, indicating that more such partnerships are required to build psychological innovations going forward. Prof Suffla concluded by emphasising the need for transformative and epistemic justice in psychological praxis and the role that ASSA could play in contributing to this within the assessment field. Other guest speakers at the event included Prof Hennie Kriek, President of the Association of Test Publishers-South Africa, who extended his congratulations to ASSA on behalf of the ATP members. Prof Cystal Hoole emphasised the importance of the work done by ASSA, especially as it pertains to the field of Organisational Psychology. Prof Dragos Iliescu extended congratulations from the International Test commission and reflected on the relevance of ASSA work in relation to the global context.
PsySSA extends it congratulations to Assessment Standards South Africa!