Assessment for Learning
What is it?
Assessment for Learning incorporates a range of Teaching and Learning strategies which focus on what students need to do to make progress. Often referred to as ‘Formative Assessment,’ it is essentially concerned with involving students in the assessment process so that they know where they are in their learning, where they need to go and how best to get there.
Improving learning through assessment requires the effective use of the following:
Innovations that include strengthening the practice of formative assessment produce significant and often substantial learning gains.” Black and Wiliam 1998
Why develop it?
- Research suggests that there will be an increase in student achievement
- Students will be actively involved in their own learning and will therefore become more independent
- All students will see how they can improve which will lead to greater self esteem
- Effective use of these strategies will develop higher order thinking
Study 1 – Investigates the impact of different styles of feedback.
- 264 students, 4 schools in 12 classes.
- Same teaching, same aims, same class work.
- 3 different types of feedback.
- Scores and comments.
Scores only – gain 0%
Comments only – gain 30%
Scores and comments – gain 0%
Study 2 – Investigates the use of feedback to improve learning.
3 classes of 12 year olds learning to write scales in music.
- Written praise
- List of weaknesses
- Oral feedback
- Nature of errors.
-Chance to correct errors.
- Control group, no feedback.
Group 2 showed the most significant learning gains due to the fact that they were provided with the opportunity to use feedback to improve. Students should be engaged in a reflective review of the work they have done to enable them to further their learning.
- 6 schools, 24 teachers took part in the KMOFAP. (Kings Medway Oxfordshire Formative Assessment Project)
- Teachers took part in Assessment for Learning strategies.
- Rich questioning.
- Comment only marking.
- Sharing success criteria.
- Self/peer assessment.
- Implementation from 1999/2000.
- Reliable data from 19/24 teachers.
- Average effect size 0.34.
- 0.34 = ¼ - ½ GCSE grade per student/per subject.
- School 25th percentile to 50th percentile.