Online ExpertTrack in Teaching

Assessment for Learning: Formative Assessment in Science and Maths Teaching

4.7 (215 reviews)

Learn to use evidence-based approaches to formative assessment to develop your responsiveness and improve your teaching skills.

414 enrolments

Created by

National STEM Learning CentreNational STEM Learning Centre

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Create a formative classroom and transform your students’ learning

This teacher CPD ExpertTrack will enable you to embed assessment for learning into your classroom. The approaches in this series of courses offer a path to becoming a more responsive teacher in science and maths.

Upon completion, you’ll be equipped with the knowledge and tools to assess student understanding, clarify their goals and progress their learning.

This ExpertTrack is co-authored by experienced educators and leading researchers in the field; Professor Dylan Wiliam, Professor Chris Harrison and Dr Andrea Mapplebeck, in partnership with STEM Learning.

Deepen your understanding of assessment for learning

Getting the most from your students requires you to fully understand their progress. The first course in this ExpertTrack is Introducing Assessment for Learning. It will teach you about the underpinning philosophy of assessment for learning, and you’ll develop your use of hinge-point questions to elicit evidence from students. You will also learn how to plan for diagnostic questions to infer student understanding.

Build lesson plans that reflect your students’ goals

The second part of this ExpertTrack is Planning for Learning. You’ll learn how to plan lessons to identify your students’ thinking and clarify their learning goals. You’ll then learn how to improve learning outcomes by clearly identifying your students’ thinking, clarify learning goals and progress your students’ understanding.

Turn your learning into practical steps

In the final course, Feedback for Learning, you’ll implement formative assessment strategies and develop your use of feedback. You’ll get to grips with developing a classroom culture that prepares students to get the most from your feedback.

Throughout these courses you’ll be given examples from real classrooms, and interviews with teachers who have implemented formative assessment. You’ll collaborate with other teachers in discussions and undertake planning activities for your own teaching context.

Key skills you will learn

  • Formative Assessment
  • Teaching Skills
  • Science Teaching
  • Mathematics Teaching
  • Assessment for Learning
  • Planning Teaching

Learning outcomes

By the end of the ExpertTrack, you’ll be able to...

  • Develop a formative classroom culture that encourages dialogue, enables you to identify and address misconceptions, and prepares your students to be receptive and responsive to feedback.
  • Identify your students’ starting points and how to plan to move their learning forward successfully through use of learning intentions and success criteria.
  • Demonstrate a range of approaches to elicit evidence of student understanding, including the use of hinge-point questions and classroom talk, enabling you to respond to your students and adapt your teaching during and between lessons.
  • Develop a range of approaches to involve students in oral and written feedback to progress their learning.
  • Reflect on your practice of assessment for learning through self-evaluation, student voice and colleague feedback, to continue to develop your use of formative assessment to progress student learning.
  • Collaborate with other educators and colleagues to try out activities and share thinking, in order to develop your teaching practice.

Experience required

This ExpertTrack is for primary and secondary school teachers who are actively teaching, and interested in CPD training. Trainee teachers will need to be working with a class of students to get the most out of the courses. You’ll need an understanding of the subject knowledge you’re teaching in order to devise formative assessment strategies for your class.

Getting started

These courses are designed for trainee teachers (ITT), newly qualified teachers (NQT) and experienced teachers teaching in either primary or secondary classrooms. While this ExpertTrack is aimed at mathematics and science teachers, teachers of other subjects may find the ideas transferable to their own subject.

ExpertTrack course overview

  • Course 1

    4.7 (105 reviews)

    Develop your responsiveness as a teacher: learn how to assess student understanding and tailor lessons to improve learning.

    3 weeks

    3 hours per week

    • Week 1

      Introducing assessment for learning
      • ExpertTrack: Assessment for Learning
      • Inside the Black Box
      • Developing your formatively-driven classroom
      • Creating an environment for classroom talk
      • Reflect on your learning this week
    • Week 2

      Diagnostic questions: intentional dialogue and HPQs
      • Diagnostic questioning
      • Hinge-point questions
      • Creating and refining hinge-point questions
    • Week 3

      Taking action
      • Acting on the evidence
      • Classroom examples: acting on the evidence
      • Reviewing your professional development
  • Course 2

    4.8 (72 reviews)

    Develop the way you use evidence of student understanding to inform your teaching and enable learning during and across lessons.

    5 weeks

    3 hours per week

    • Week 1

      What is planning for learning?
      • ExpertTrack: Assessment for Learning
      • Planning for learning as formative practice
      • Decision-driven data-collection
      • Examples of collecting evidence
      • Planning your decisions
    • Week 2

      Planning starting points for teaching
      • Misconceptions as a starting point
      • Finding misconceptions for planning
      • Planning using learning intentions
      • Identifying successful learning
      • Planning starting points for teaching
    • Week 3

      Evidence and inferring student understanding
      • Inferring understanding to respond in lessons
      • Developing your questioning for evidence
      • Classroom examples of questioning
      • Teaching resources for questioning
    • Week 4

      Responding to the evidence in lessons
      • Acting on the evidence
      • Group work as a response within and between lessons
      • Responding between lessons
      • Summary: responding in and between lessons
    • Week 5

      Responding to evidence across lessons
      • Planning in the medium term
      • Planning for learning with students
      • Planning for learning with colleagues
      • Reviewing your professional development
  • Course 3

    4.7 (38 reviews)

    Learn how to give pupil feedback through formative assessment that supports student learning without increasing your workload.

    1 peer-graded assignment

    3 weeks

    3 hours per week

    • Week 1

      What is effective feedback?
      • ExpertTrack: Assessment for Learning
      • What is feedback for learning?
      • Feedback dimensions
      • Creating a feedback culture
    • Week 2

      Feedback that makes a difference
      • Written feedback: individual students
      • Written feedback: whole class
      • Oral feedback
      • Reviewing your practice of written and oral feedback
    • Week 3

      Teacher and student roles in feedback
      • Teacher’s role in feedback
      • Student's role in feedback
      • Developing your feedback
      • Reviewing your professional development

Prove you're job ready

Highlight the new, job-relevant skills you’ve gained and supplement existing qualifications with a hard-earned, industry-specific digital certificate – plus one for every course within your ExpertTrack.

  • Learn the latest in your chosen industry or subject.
  • Complete each course and pass assessments.
  • Receive certificates validated by the educating organisation.
  • Impress employers with learning outcomes you can add to your CV.
  • Make your career dreams a reality.

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Join an ExpertTrack to master new skills in your chosen specialist area. Work through a series of topic-focused courses at your own pace, and pass the final assessment to earn a digital certificate award which proves your expertise.

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World-class learning with National STEM Learning Centre

The National STEM Learning Centre provides world-class professional development activities and resources to support the teaching of STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) subjects.

Meet your instructors

Former physics teacher & leader, now supporting educators to develop teaching. Commissioned by National STEM Learning Centre to work with Dylan Wiliam & Chris Harrison to design & support AfL courses.

Reader in Science Education and Chair of ASE 2014-2015. Lead UK Researcher on Assessment for Learning. Research interests in Inquiry-learning, professional learning and CPD.

Former school teacher, academic, and university administrator, now working with teachers and leaders around the world to improve educational outcomes for young people.

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ExpertTracks are a series of online courses designed to help you master new skills in specialist areas. You pay a monthly subscription fee which includes access to all courses within the ExpertTrack, as well as assessments and the final digital certificate.

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