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Making Good Progress?: The future of Assessment for Learning Paperback – 2 Feb 2017
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Christodoulou is one of the most remarkable writers in education the UK has seen in decades, because she takes a subject as potentially opaque and esoteric as assessment, and unpacks it in an intelligible, vital way that neither patronises the novice or offends the expert. Her first book, 'Seven Myths', is one of the few texts that every new teacher should read. Her second book is, rather amazingly, another. It should be read deeply, broadly, everywhere that children are taught and assessments are used. (Tom Bennett, chair of the DfE Behaviour Management Group and founder of researchED)
Daisy is one of the leading thinkers on assessment in the UK and this book is essential reading for everyone who works in education. It shows that flaws in assessment are the cause of so many issues in our education system and gives us a clear path to fixing those flaws. (Sam Freedman, Executive Director of Programmes at Teach First and trustee of the Teacher Development Trust)
Schools are going to have to re-think their methods of assessing, recording and reporting, from scratch, and this book is an excellent place to start. (Dylan Wiliam, Emeritus Professor of Educational Assessment at University College London)
This book addresses some of the most pressing areas in the field: namely why assessment for learning has too often become assessment of learning and why marking and feedback are not the same thing. It sets out a new vision of assessment in a clear, fluid style that will be just as useful to the newly qualified teacher as the seasoned academic (Carl Hendrick, Head of Learning and Research at Wellington College)
A research-informed examination of formative assessment practices.
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I wonder if there is an underlying assumption here about the purpose of education: that it is really about instrumental skills rather than learning for its own sake. I don't share that assumption which is why I disagreed web much of the first parts of the book.
The latter sections, detailing how assessment systems might work in the future, was much stronger and is well worth a read.
The real strength in this book lies in its aim to look at assessment and not to get diverted by current changes in the assessment systems. If you are looking for a book that will tell you how to grade at 9-1 GCSE or to benchmark at KS2 you will not find it here. Instead you will find the arguments to release curriculum planners from the shackles of deriving ever more summative like tasks in formative assessments. You will instead explore the knowledge of learners, understand what they do and do not know and be able to provide feedback for progress.
Making Good Progress? is an immensely easy read especially for those involved in curriculum planning and assessment design. It's short chapter style allows the reader to pause at the end of each section and consider the possible uses for the arguments in their own environments. This book is highly recommended for anyone who wants to deeply think about progress in their schools.
Can we find better ways of giving feedback for progress? Does formative assessment always need to be linked to the test? Can we reward artistic and talented responses? Does summative assessment need to be done termly? Can we rely on summative grades/benchmarks to tell us what our learners know?...... all of these questions and many more can be tackled when reading this book.
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