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ERIC Number: EJ935483
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2011
Pages: 3
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 8
ISSN: ISSN-0269-2465
Assessment for Learning: How and Why It Works in Primary Classrooms. Issues in Primary Assessment--Part 2
Harrison, Chris; Howard, Sally
Primary Science, n116 p5-7 Jan-Feb 2011
Assessment for learning (AfL) is different from other forms of assessment because it has the specific purpose of promoting children's learning, rather than summarising or measuring what has been learnt. A key aspect of this is recognising that it is only "formative" when the information gleaned is actually used to move learning forward. It is not enough just to recognise what is and what is not understood. It must include time to act on any feedback gathered, so that there is feed-forward. It is this action that brings about improvement and raises standards of attainment. A review of formative assessment undertaken by Paul Black and Dylan Wiliam in 1998 identified four key areas that needed to be "good" in order for effective learning to occur: (1) feedback; (2) sharing criteria with the "learners"; (3) questioning; and (4) self-assessment. Since then, a great deal more has been learnt about the practical steps needed at a classroom level in order for formative assessment to function effectively. What has become even clearer, is that it is about getting the complex interrelation between talk, collaboration and active learning right. In the second part of this series, the authors focus on the key aspects of formative assessment, including dialogue, collaboration and independent learners. [For part I, "Assessment Purposes," see EJ912722.] (Contains 3 figures.)
Association for Science Education. College Lane Hatfield, Herts, AL10 9AA, UK. Tel: +44-1-707-283000; Fax: +44-1-707-266532; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Primary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A