Tag Archives: Dylan Wiliam

Ability is the consequence not the cause of what children learn

The evidence on ability grouping appears relatively well-known. The EEF Toolkit summarise the research findings thus: Overall, setting or streaming appears to benefit higher attaining pupils and be detrimental to the learning

Should we give teachers the ‘benefit of the doubt’?

Earlier in the week, Schools Minister, Lord Nash announced that schools should be more like businesses and jettison underperforming staff. According to this TES report he’s reported to have said, ““I think one

Problems with the ‘zone of proximal development’

It’s hard to have a discussion about learning without someone sooner or later chipping in with the Russian developmental psychologist, Lev Vygotsky’s zone of proximal development (ZPD) to support their position. This might,

When assessment fails

I wrote yesterday about the distinctions between assessment and feedback. This sparked some interesting comment which I want to explore here. I posted a diagram which Nick Rose and I designed for

Testing, testing… why one test can’t do everything

The thing which most seems to rile people about testing is the fact that it puts children under stress. A certain amount of stress is probably a good thing – there’s nothing

Why I struggle with learning objectives and success criteria

A strenuous soul hates cheap success. Ralph Waldo Emerson Broadly, I’m in favour of sharing with students the intention behind what they are being asked to do. Anything that adds clarity to

Should students respond to feedback?

The opposite of talking isn’t listening. The opposite of talking is waiting. Fran Lebowitz One of the criticisms of my post about book monitoring is that I have omitted checks to see

Rethinking assessment Part 1: How can we tell if students are making progress?

Is it progress if a cannibal uses a fork? Stanislaw J. Lec For some time now I’ve been of the opinion that the way we normally think of progress is based on

Assessment: evolution vs. design

Optimization hinders evolution. Alan J. Perlis   As we all know, the DfE decided to ditch National Curriculum levels from September 2014 without plans for a replacement. Some have reacted to this

Should we learn to love our shackles?

“Freedom is nothing else but a chance to be better.” Albert Camus There’s already been some pretty scathing reactions to the master plan to introduce a common curriculum and assessment system into UK schools

20 psychological principles for teachers #20 Interpretation

This is the 20th and final post in my series on the Top 20 Principles From Psychology for Teaching and Learning and the third of three posts examining how to assess students’ progress: “Making sense

20 psychological principles for teachers #19 Measurement

This is #19 in my series on the Top 20 Principles From Psychology for Teaching and Learning and the second of three posts examining how to assess students’ progress: “Students’ skills, knowledge, and abilities are