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What we’ve been up to: Assessment Academy

Teachers assess their students’ work each and every day. But most teachers have never had sustained high-quality training to assess well. We think that needs to change.

In September 2016, we’re launching the pilot of our Assessment Academy. In conjunction with Rob Coe (Member of our Advisory Board and Professor at Durham University’s School of Education), we are building a world-class, world-first training course: a bridge between the research in assessment, and what happens in classrooms. We want to make a huge difference to student outcomes where they matter.

The reason we say this will be a world-first training course is down to the way in which we intend to build it. While we will pilot it (and evaluate its impact while we go – a new standard for teacher CPD) as a face-to-face course, we want to bring the best expertise in assessment to thousands of teachers, not only in the UK, but also worldwide. To that end, we will develop a compelling and effective online course, which is affordable, flexible and available to all teachers, anywhere.

 

Creating the “Assessment Lead”

We will seek to develop capacity within schools for good assessment by training staff up as “Assessment Leads”. While this is insufficient to create change in itself – they provide the “spark”, but they need support and commitment from SLT and Governors – we have a clear role in mind. Assessment Leads will be trained to:

  1. understand why, when and how to assess
  2. understand key concepts in assessment (validity, reliability, purpose, value)
  3. influence classroom practice in their school (e.g. by improving the quality of feedback informed by improved assessment data)
  4. support teachers’ development in assessment practice in their school by:
    • being a resource for colleagues
    • modelling good practice
    • taking on the role of ‘expert practitioner’
  5. advise and support colleagues in their school on the design of good assessments
  6. use assessment to identify misconceptions
  7. use assessment to identify learners’ needs and track progress
  8. work with colleagues to trigger interventions where needed and monitor the progress of students involved
  9. perform relevant basic analysis of assessment data
  10. remain up-to-date with the relevant developments in assessment practice and policy
  11. seek further professional development through Masters, PhD and other routes
  12. use assessment as a component of good evaluation of progress in school (e.g. at the school level, key stage level, or subject level)

What’s more, we are factoring in to the course support and training in how to disseminate and embed these good practices on a wider scale.

 

How do I find out more?

Through the Assessment Academy, we want to bring the best expertise in assessment to thousands of teachers, not only in the UK, but also worldwide. But doing this will take time and work… To find out more details about what we are proposing, and to be kept up-to-date with the latest developments, head to assessment.academy, and sign up.

(You’ll also be entered into a draw to win an awesome prize – but then we would say that…!)

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