Some diagnostic activity examples

As discussed by Chris and Dylan diagnostic activities occur throughout the learning.

They can be used for one of two purposes:

  1. To elicit what students already know
  2. To check for students’ understanding about a concept or key idea

Diagnostic activity examples

  • Hinge-point questions - a diagnostic question that you ask your students when you reach the point in a lesson when you need to check if students are ready to move on, and if yes, in which direction.
  • KWLH Grid [DOCX] [PDF] - an alternative to the KWL grid KWLH Grid
  • Concept Cartoons - a strategy to elicit learners’ ideas, challenge their thinking and provide pointers for how those ideas might be developed.
  • York Science - The York Science project has a focus on developing Evidence of Learning Items (ELIs). ELIs are short formative assessment items designed to be embedded into science teaching at Key Stage 3 or early Key Stage 4.
  • Plickers - a tool that lets teachers collect real-time formative assessment data without the need for student devices.
  • ZipGrade - a tool that lets teachers collect real-time formative assessment data without the need for student devices.

Above are some ideas with links for a range of different diagnostic activities that you could use. There are many others - and you will encounter some more in the upcoming steps. Please share your experiences of such techniques via the comments on this step.

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This article is from the free online course:

Differentiating for Learning in STEM Teaching

National STEM Learning Centre