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  • Question

    What is meant by "basic concepts" in the Achievement standard 91059: "Demonstrate understanding of basic concepts used to make products from resistant materials"


    It is clear from the explanatory notes that the focus of the standard is on understanding materials and working techniques, and on how and why different materials and techniques are used in different situations.

    As far as materials go, the “basic concept” is that different materials have different characteristics that make them suitable in some situations but not others. The standard (EN 5) says these characteristics may include but are not limited to profile, hardness, malleability, ductility, elasticity, and grain.

    With respect to techniques, the “basic concept” is that different techniques are used for different purposes and when working with different resistant materials. The standard (EN 3) says that purposes include measuring or marking out; sizing, shaping or forming; joining or assembly; and finishing, detailing, or tuning.

    The standard (EN 2) makes it clear that “basic concepts” extends to safe practice. This means that students need to be aware of the hazards associated with particular materials and techniques, and how these can be mitigated.

    For assessment against this AS, students should draw on understandings gained from their own practice, but the expectation is that they will also draw on understandings gained from exploring a wide variety of products. Teachers need to give students opportunities to do this and to model the sorts of reflective and inquiry questions students should be asking.

    This AS is derived from the Technological Knowledge strand of the curriculum and is designed to encourage students to extend and deepen their understanding of materials and safe working techniques, and to apply these understandings to their technological decision making.

  • Question

    Would a jacket constructed of Chambray fabric and lined with satin be sufficient for AS 91621 (3.21)? The assessment asks for a formal garment to be constructed. Would the use of interfacing in a collar, lining of the jacket, the use of pockets and the application of applique or machine embroidery be sufficient complex procedures? What do you consider as complex procedures in a jacket for this assessment? Could a jacket with a rounded neck and not a collar also be considered for this standard?


    The jacket you describe would meet the requirements of complex procedures as outlined in explanatory note 3. See below:

    Explanatory note 3

    Complex procedures are those that require carrying out two or more of the following:

    • joining materials with different properties, for example, jacket shell and lining, sailcloth on to tape (joining the chambray fabric to the lining)
    • changing the characteristics of the materials, for example, interfacing, interlining, boning (changing the characteristics of the collar fabric by using interfacing)
    • managing special fabrics, for example, fine knits, sheers, satins, ripstop nylon, canvas
    • managing the inclusion of structural or style features, for example, tucks, pockets, openings, closures, weather proof storage (the inclusion of pockets)
    • cutting on the bias.

    A jacket with a rounded neck could still provide two complex procedures if the pocket and lining are still included as described in the initial jacket.

    These students could also be using interfacing in hems and front facings. The outcome does not necessarily need to be a formal garment. Some students have had success with making tents, raincoats, and other textile items.

    Technology clarifications for AS91621 provides further guidance on this standard.

    The application of applique or machine embroidery is generally assessed using a different standard – AS 91623 Implement complex procedures to create an applied design for a specified product.

  • Question

    I am a Digital Technology teacher. I have Year 7 and Year 8 students. Their abilities range from Level 1-4, 5? With my Year 7 students we make Monopoly Play pieces with a 3D printer. Year 8s produce a computer game writing their own coding etc. Do I have to get them to make three Functional Models? What in your opinion is a suitable Functional Model for them to make? Can you give me an example of a Functional Model Students of this age could be expected to create? Thanks


    Functional models are representations of potential technological outcomes and that they exist in many forms (For example, thinking, talking, drawing, physical mock-ups, computer aided simulations etc) The purpose of functional modelling is to test design concepts to see if they are suitable for use in the development of an outcome.

    There is no requirement for a set number of functional models but rather that the functional modelling was adequate to test designs and reduce the risk of wasting time, money, and materials.

    The examples you have suggested are great examples of functional modelling in technological practice.

    You will see in the key ideas on the technological modelling component on the Technology Online website the following comment: 

    At levels 1–4 students can learn much about functional modelling within the context of their own practice. But by the time they get to level 5 they need to be learning from the experience of a broad range of technologists so that their understanding is not limited to what they can personally do or by the opportunities available in their school setting.  

    There are lots of news items on Technology Online that are good examples of how technologists go about technological modelling.

    See: All news tagged technological modelling

    Students could explore some of these news items to extend their learning experience of technological modelling  beyond their own practice. Teachers have also had success by bringing in technologists to the classroom through the Futureintech facilitators initiative. 

  • Question

    I have a colleague who has developed a unit focused on the level 3 AS91629 'resolve a spatial design' standard. In this unit rather than having actual stakeholders he has pretended to actually be the stakeholder. In this instance they are making playgrounds. He has critiqued the work from the perspective of being a kid playing on that playground, giving them his own reaction to the design as if he were a child. Students in his class have then taken his feedback and responded to it. They are aware that he is not the kid. I am curious as to whether this is acceptable practice? Can we simply pretend to be all of our students' potential stakeholders?


    Rather than pretending to be the actual stakeholder, the teacher could play a critical role in supporting students' understanding of the needs associated with playgrounds.  

    The focus in this achievement standard is based on the resolution of a spatial design.

    To resolve the spatial design the students could consider, for example children’s likes and dislikes, ergonomic and anthropometric information, existing outcomes, new materials, shapes and facility interactivity, the physical needs of children when they are playing and the regulations and policies about safety.

  • Question

    In the assessment schedule of Tech scholarship it says students must present a reflective report. Can this reflective report be their A3 visual portfolios? (30 pages)


    Some student’s produce a reflective portfolio that needs little to add to it. The reflective report can be anything that the candidate chooses to submit within specifications. However, the panel leaders' report this year supports the notion that successful reports have been specifically produced with the criteria from the scholarship standard in mind.

    Individual test results and individual questionnaire responses do not need to be in a report. It is more important to provide a summary of the results of these and the student includes in their report how these results informed the outcome.

    You will find an assessment schedule on New Zealand Technology Scholarship. Under Technology resources and Assessment materials – the most recent assessment materials has an assessment schedule as one of the files in the zip file. 

  • Question

    For Level 2 (AS91356) and Level 3 (AS91610) Concept Design standard, can the teacher act as the primary client stakeholder? And give students stakeholder feedback on their concept designs?


    The following definition is given in the Technology Online glossary for a stakeholder:


    A person or groups of people (families, whānau, communities, iwi, organisations, businesses) with a vested interest in a technological outcome, and/or its development.

    Key stakeholders are those people that are directly influential or will be directly impacted on by the Technological Practice itself and/or its resulting outcomes (including the Technological Outcome and any other by-products).

    Wider (community) stakeholders are those people that are less directly influential for or impacted on by the practice or outcome. They can, nonetheless, be identified as having some level of influence, often through others, and/or they may be affected by the project or its outcome in the future.

    If the outcome were being developed for the teacher then they would be a key stakeholder.

    The feedback needs to come from the person or groups of people that the outcome is being made/designed for to ensure authentic technological practice. The teacher may be guiding and supporting the students on how they respond to stakeholder feedback as they develop their outcome.

  • Question

    For the standard: AS91623 Implement complex procedures to create an applied design for a specified product Would students be able to use patchwork as an applied design medium?


    The standard requires students to interpret a complex design to determine an applied design medium.

    Patchwork can be interpreted as a Complex Technique (EN5) and could be applied using any mediums listed in EN3. However, the design to be patch worked should be complex. See Ex 7 for definitions of a complex design. Students could trial and test their complex patchwork design with different mediums to determine the medium suited to their design. 

    Alternatively, students could trial different complex techniques using different mediums to select a technique, medium, equipment, and materials.

  • Question

    AS91345. L2 textiles students have just completed cheer leading dresses, tees, harem pants and skorts for a stage production. I would like to know if the following can count as 'advanced procedures'. Fabrics combined were all stretch knits including lycra, scuba knit, pro-mesh, and tee shirting. Style features included bound neck and arm, overlocked fluted rolled hem, lining, pattern adaptations of new seam lines as style features, applique to bodice, screen printed logo, twin needling, and industrial over locking. All testing was completed prior to use in final garment.


    To achieve 91345, students need to show evidence of selecting and performing the technique. That is, students could be trialling several different ways to achieve a desired result, and selecting the best method. Students also need to devise an order of construction or a production sequence to achieve their special features (see Explanatory Notes 5 and 6).

    This standard is about making a garment with special features.

    Explanatory Note 7 defines special features as those that rely on the application of advanced skills.  These include style features (for example, set in sleeve, fly front, tailored collars and cuffs, welt pockets) and/or decorative features (for example, pin tucking, embroidery, and shirring) and/or structural features (for example, 3D felting and combining different fibres in felting and different materials, for example, nuno felting). That is, the focus is on features, rather than on the fabric used.

    Some of the procedures that these students applied as described sound more basic (and therefore better suited to NCEA Level 1) rather than advanced. For example, an over locked fluted rolled hem requires limited scheduling and basic skills and would therefore not be considered to be an advanced procedure.

    The applique to bodice and screen printed logos could be considered special features if they required advanced skills and scheduling. If the designs that these students applied were reasonably elaborate, then these may well be considered advanced procedures.   

    Industrial over locking and twin needling are finishing technique, rather than special features. For example, an advanced technique constitutes more than using a different machine or a different needle.

    A pattern adaptation in itself may not achieve a special feature. At level 2, students can also be assessed against AS 91626 Draft a pattern to interpret a design for a garment.

  • Question

    Our school has decided to look at Generic Technology 1.12 as a guiding document on the development of process in a manufacturing context. This works well under Construction and Food Technology. However, I am trying to figure out how to put this in a Digital Technologies context to help meet the Generic Technology that this is under and provide guidance for my students to develop the ideas http://www.nzqa.govt.nz/nqfdocs/ncea-resource/achievements/2015/as91055.pdf The standard talks about a large number of manufacturing processes, one being an electronics focus. Yet there is little or no other coverage of other Digital Technologies strands. Can there be some guidance on how this can fit within the Generic context for Digital Technologies? Can guidance also be provided for describing the yield of a manufacturing process and the role of quality control in a digital technologies - programming context?


    Learning programme design in Technology should be driven by multiple factors. Guidance is provided in the Senior secondary teaching and learning guidelines - Learning programme design.

    It is not ideal to have the assessment tool driving the programme design. The purpose of the assessment for this achievement standard is for students to demonstrate they have an understanding about the complexities of manufacturing (often multiple).

    There are lots of digital technologies context examples students could refer to. For example, the manufacturing of cell phones, tablets etc. The Owens Design website states, “The challenge of manufacturing cell phones, tablets, and other mobile devices continues to grow more complex. The trends of increasing device complexity, miniaturization, and customization are driving a revolution in manufacturing process.” This website includes a range of case studies. See Mobile devices

    Students could look at the role of programming/computer science in relation to production lines and robotics.  Most equipment on a production line has an element of computer programming that enables it to perform a specific task. For example, Howard Wright use a computer-generated production line to manufacture their beds. They have programmed robotic equipment to move at an optimal pace to retain precision and maximise yield.

  • Question

    I'm struggling to find clear definitions and examples of the following three concepts: - Key Planning Decisions - Review Points - The difference between Review Points and Critical Review Points. So far I have vague notions about them all, but nothing concrete that I can explain to my class. My guesses are: - Key Planning Decisions - any decisions that we make as part of our planning...or maybe only decisions about the planning - I can't think of an example though. - Review Points - when we look over our planning and check that we are keeping up, altering dates if needed. Or maybe when we put an entry in our journal, saying what we've worked on in the past week? -The difference between Review Points and Critical Review Points - a small look-over vs a major look-over of our planning?


    Key Planning Decisions are usually established at the beginning of the project. For a website this could include plans to carry out stakeholder interviews, plans to research, and selecting imagery.

    Review Points are the times you review plans for this week and look at what may have changed in terms of time and other resources. It is important that planning is not just a mere record of what has been done, but rather is about planning to keep moving the practice forward.

    Critical review points are those where the student makes major decisions about the direction of the project –e.g. following the collation of stakeholder feedback on the imagery it is clear that images xy and z are the preferred option. The student can then go ahead and embed these in the website. Selecting the correct images is critical to the success of the website.

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