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This content is taken from the National STEM Learning Centre's online course, The Science of Learning. Join the course to learn more.

Your teaching

This step is designed specifically for teachers and other educators. Being able to assess your own development is a crucial part of professional practice. To help you gauge your current thinking about teaching and learning, we’ve created a self-audit for you to complete before you do more on the course. We also have a reflection grid to support you each week.

Reflecting on what you are learning

Trying to take in new ideas and embed them into your practice is not easy. However, we stress the importance of critical reflection if you want to translate these ideas into practice, and also if you want to be effective in making changes in what you do. We recommend that you keep a personal record of all your work on the course, as a resource for refreshing your memory and continuing to refine your practice in the future.

Exactly how and where you do this is up to you. It could be a private ‘digital scrapbook’ file. If you have a blog or other online space where you share ideas, you may choose to put selected work there (always respecting the privacy and confidentiality of others, of course). We’ve provided a Reflection Grid to help with your reflective professional development.

Using the Reflection Grid

Each of the box has a particular name and function. Use a blank copy of the Reflection Grid (Word Doc) for each week. Take a look at our example (PDF) of how you might complete the grid.

On some occasions we will prompt you to use the Reflection Grid, but feel free to use it whenever you want. We hope you find it a useful tool to help you in your learning journey - so that when you go online and you start to talk with others, you’ve got ideas to share.

Self-audit task

Read these notes before you complete the self-audit task. You will need to download a copy of your responses for use later in the course.

How to approach the self-audit

  • There are no right or wrong answers.
  • Answer honestly about where you are now, not where you want to be.
  • Your answers will help you to identify what areas of practice you need to focus on the most as you progress through the course.
  • Save a copy of your responses.

At the end of the course we will ask you the same questions: you can then compare your responses and see how much progress you have made. This will also help the course team understand the impact of the course more generally.

What’s in the self-audit

The self-audit asks you to look at your regular practice using the statements below:

  1. I discuss new teaching approaches and ideas with colleagues.
  2. Before I (decide to) use a new teaching approach I investigate research and scientific evidence that justified this approach.
  3. When deciding to trial a new teaching approach I look for evidence that shows its weaknesses and shortcomings.
  4. I try out a range of teaching approaches in my classroom, to find what works for me and my students.
  5. I focus my students’ attention before I start teaching new content.
  6. I represent new concepts in different ways to support a range of learners.
  7. I use questioning to revisit content from previous lessons.
  8. I discuss with my students how learning takes place.
  9. I take steps to address where I am not confident in a topic or lack enthusiasm.
  10. As a teacher I have an important role to play in developing my students’ capacity to learn.
  11. I am confident at justifying my teaching approaches.

Feel free to discuss the statements via the comments on this step.

Before you complete the self-audit task, please make sure you are familiar with JISC Online Surveys terms and conditions and privacy policy (this is the platform used for the self-audit). Your course progress and FutureLearn profile will not be affected, whether or not you decide to take part in this task. For the purposes of any personal information submitted to the self-audit, STEM Learning will be the data controller, not FutureLearn. Further details on the opening page of the self-audit task.


  1. Access the self-audit task and complete it.
  2. At the end of the survey, click My responses.
  3. Click Download as PDF.
  4. Save the PDF where you will be able to retrieve it to review at the end of the course.

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This article is from the free online course:

The Science of Learning

National STEM Learning Centre