An interview with Dylan WiliamDylan Wiliam is a world authority on formative assessment and Emeritus Professor of Educational Assessment at the UCL Institute of Education in London. His popular book on formative assessment, Embedded Formative Assessment, was recently released as a revised edition and his latest book, Creating the Schools our Children Need, critically examines the ways we could seek to improve education at a system level. Following the recent trial of a professional development approach to formative assessment conducted by the Education Endowment Foundation in the UK, I thought it would be good to catch up with Wiliam and seek his thoughts. 1. The Education Endowment Foundation in the UK (EEF) recently published the findings of its trial of the Embedding Formative Assessment professional development programme. How would you summarise these findings? 2. 3. 4. Perhaps more surprisingly, formative assessment does not even entail any view of psychology (what happens when learning takes place). 5.
Getting started with Assessment for LearningGlossary Active learning Learning which engages students and challenges their thinking, using a variety of activities. Assessment for learning Essential teaching strategies during learning to help teachers and students evaluate progress in terms of understanding and skills acquisition, providing guidance and feedback for subsequent teaching and learning. Closed question A question that can be answered with either a single word (usually ‘yes’ or ‘no’) or a short phrase and the choice of answers is limited. Cold calling Questioning technique in which the teacher selects a learner at random to answer a question, instead of learners putting up their hands to answer a question. Critical thinking The ability, underlying all rational discourse and enquiry, to assess and evaluate analytically particular assertions or concepts in the light of either evidence or wider contexts. Ego-specific feedback Feedback to the learner that focuses on their personal qualities.