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From the editor

Professor Bill Lucas, Director, Centre for Real-World Learning, University of Winchester, UK; Co-founder, Rethinking Assessment, UK Since 1918, success at school in England, Wales and Northern Ireland has been largely judged by means of high-stakes, standardised examinations at the end of secondary education, with the School Certificate for 16-year-olds and the Higher School Certificate two […]

Transforming assessment principles and practices through collaboration: A case study from a primary school and university


The currency of assessment for learners with SEND

ALISTAIR CRAWFORD, NATIONAL NETWORK OF SPECIALIST PROVISION (NNSP), UK This article explores aspirations and meaningful outcomes beyond the school gates through the perspective of ‘experts by experience’. … this problem of deficit framing is located within the wider societal issue of the meritocracy, life’s “sorting principle” which has narrowed what we perceive a “good life” […]

Assessing progress in special schools: Reviews and recommendations

Alex Tomkins, Headteacher, Greenside School and EdD student, University of Derby, UK Assessment of students with SEND has been under debate for a long time, with several significant changes over the past few years. This article shares the journey on which special schools have been in terms of guidance on assessment, as well as how […]

Teaching creativity: An international perspective on studying art in the UK

SEUNGAH LEE, ART & DESIGN TEACHER, NO FRAME ART & EDUCATION, SOUTH KOREA LOUISA HORNER, LEARNING & DEVELOPMENT LEAD, CATS GLOBAL SCHOOLS, UK Studying art can be a culture shock. In fact, it should be a culture shock. Art students in the UK are faced with expectations to create original artwork and not imitate, but […]

Dialogic teaching: The power of classroom talk to increase student engagement

GRAHAM CHISNELL FCCT, EDUCATION CONSULTANT AND AUTHOR, UK Classroom talk that engages students in dialogue to stimulate and extend thinking, knowing and understanding can have a powerful and positive impact on student learning (Alexander, 2020). In this reflective piece, I examine how embedding a culture of dialogic teaching in school impacts on teacher engagement and student […]

Reframing post-lesson assessment and feedback: A case study

Adam Kohlbeck, Deputy Headteacher, Birkbeck Primary School, UK Why is feedback worth our thinking?  In 2016, Ofsted produced its report ‘Eliminating unnecessary workload around marking’, placing teacher workload at the forefront of leadership thinking. For many, written marking as a means of post-lesson assessment is not something that has ever been questioned. The Education Endowment […]

Revolutionising classroom feedback: A practical approach to Dylan Wiliam’s vision

AIMEE WILLIAMS, DIRECTOR OF SCHOOL IMPROVEMENT, THREE SPIRES TRUST, UK Introduction In the ever-evolving landscape of education, the impact of influential figures like Dylan William cannot be overstated. For the uninitiated, his influential work on feedback in the classroom emphasises the importance of formative assessment as a powerful tool for improving student learning and ‘moving […]

Student mindset and the art of receiving feedback

EMOKE MIHALY, THE ENGLISH MODERN SCHOOL WAKRA, DOHA, QATAR Introduction In my decade-long journey as a primary school teacher within international school settings, I have explored the different aspects of providing effective feedback to young students in order to improve their learning. Building on Hattie’s (2009) influential meta-analysis, which underlines the impact of feedback on […]

Measuring what matters: Redefining data’s role in schools

AMARBEER SINGH GILL, TEACHER EDUCATOR, AMBITION INSTITUTE, UK JENNIFER CURRAN, RESEARCH SCIENTIST, AMBITION INSTITUTE, UK We [often] question the judgement of experts whenever we seek out a second opinion on a medical diagnosis. Unfortunately, when it comes to our own knowledge and opinions, we often favor feeling right over being right… We need to develop the habit […]

Empowering early learners: Navigating the interplay of teaching practice and formative assessment for cultivating student agency in the primary classroom

Bev Coombridge, Doctoral Student, University of Buckingham, UK; Initial Teacher Educator, Bethlehem Tertiary Institute, New Zealand The development of student agency is increasingly recognised as a crucial element in effective education (Sirkko et al., 2019; Cook-Sather, 2020; Ruef, 2021), particularly in the formative years of primary school (Vaughn, 2018). Research has consistently shown that formative […]

AI and assessment: Rethinking assessment strategies and supporting students in appropriate use of AI

LYNSEY ANNE MEAKIN, SENIOR LECTURER IN EDUCATION, INSTITUTE OF EDUCATION, UNIVERSITY OF DERBY, UK Traditional assessment methods often fall short in capturing students’ true abilities and fostering authentic learning experiences, and the introduction of AI (artificial intelligence) tools further complicates the task of accurately assessing genuine student learning.   This article will provide a brief explanation […]

Assessing for the future: A reflection from Kimichi School

CHRIS PASSEY FCCT, DEPUTY HEAD, KIMICHI SCHOOL, UK Kimichi School is a small, music-specialist independent school in Birmingham, UK founded by Sally Alexander MBE in 2014. Background The introduction of a National Curriculum and, therefore, GCSEs was overseen by the Secretary of State for Education (1986–89) at the time, the now-Lord Baker. In an article for […]

Assessment and recognition for next-generation learning

SANDRA MILLIGAN AND ANGELA POLLOCK, UNIVERSITY OF MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA Background and purpose of this paper In Australia in 2012, general learning competencies (referred to in other places by terms such as 21st-century skills, transferable skills or transversal skills) were formally incorporated into the national curriculum and subsequently adopted at every level, in all Australian schooling jurisdictions. […]

Access arrangements: Avoiding limiting pupils through a normal way of working

JAYSON COX-DARLING, LEAD TEACHER FOR SEND, ST REGIS CE ACADEMY, UK Building blocks I am sitting on my living room floor helping my daughter with her homework. It’s phonics, and as I’m a specialist teacher, it is quickly delegated to me to help. I grab the DUPLO® blocks and a whiteboard marker and together we start […]

Assessment: The key to multi-tiered systems of support

DR JESSICA TALADA, LIBERTY UNIVERSITY, USA Introduction Assessments are critical for providing targeted supports to students. Students must take assessments that provide teachers with a system for actionable processes for support. That system is contingent on utilising tools that target specific areas of need in order to provide teachers with guidance for how to support students. […]

Moving towards the formative assessment of CPD

SAM GIBBS, Trust Lead for Curriculum & Development, GMET NIKKI SULLIVAN, Deputy Headteacher, Beckfoot School In this article, we consider why the summative assessment of teaching and professional learning may persist, along with the associated problems. Secondly, we explore how the formative evaluation of CPD (continuous professional development) might support leaders in not only assessing […]

Fostering growth through video feedback and self-assessment: A project-based approach to the second-year ECT induction

JO DAY AND PURVI GANDHI, TRENT COLLEGE, UK  Introduction  This article outlines a pilot case study of an innovative project-based induction model for second-year early career teachers (ECTs). The model, based on principles of effective continuous professional development (CPD), integrates essential mechanisms like goal-setting, feedback and action planning, as recommended by the Education Endowment Foundation (EEF, […]