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SCS Diploma Markers’ Day 2018

The SCS Diploma in Cosmetic Science has for many years been developed and delivered by the SCS and its members. The current course is delivered by distance learning with assessment in the form of coursework and written examinations. Each September, around 70 students from around the world sit a total of four examinations covering everything from raw material chemistry through to claim substantiation, legislation and marketing.

During 2017, the Education Committee began a thorough review and refresh of the course materials and accompanying documentation. The refresh is due to be finalised ready for the September 2019 intake of students but in the meantime the Secretariat and industry experts are working hard to ensure our jewel in the SCS crown continues to sparkle for many years to come!

As mentioned above, the review isn’t just about the course content but will also address the ‘behind the scenes’ workings of the course. On 1 May we welcomed 22 exam setters and markers to our third annual markers’ day, led by Alison James (Professor of Learning and Teaching and Director of Academic Quality and Development, University of Winchester). During the day, Alison led us through some thought-provoking activities. This has allowed us to come away with a clearer view of how best to assist and guide markers and setters for the years to come whilst ensuring quality and fairness to our students.

One activity that Alison led the attendees through was a game of cards!

After lunch the markers were asked “what are you looking for in assessment?” Each marker had five cards on which they could place one single word. Next…

…a game of ‘snap’.

Despite the chaos of 22 markers attempting to participate in a single card game it soon became clear that they were very much aligned in their answers to the question:


Working in groups, the afternoon session also allowed markers to share their ideas and concerns on question formats and marking schemes. Many took away new ideas and learnings from the discussions but also, importantly, general consensus was reached on many issues and these will also help shape any future guidance provided to markers and students.

We hope that all who attended found the day productive and useful and we look forward to welcoming even more of our question setters and markers at the 2019 event.
SAVE THE DATE: 10 January 2019!

The Diploma review is just one part of the education strategy devised by the Education Committee, and adopted by Council in March, following the recommendations in the final report of the year-long SCS Education Project. Look out for further news of the 5-year plan in future SCS Newsletters & Updates or contact Amanda Isom (Chair, SCS Education Committee) to learn more.

Amanda Isom (CTPA & SCS Education Committee Chair)