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Cartoon. ICT supported Assessment for Learning Mary-Anne Murphy. ROTORUA 2011. Intentions of this session. To explore the following questions... What are our understandings of "Assessment for Learning"? What ICT's/Technologies are available to support Assessment for Learning practices?

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ICT supported

Assessment for Learning

Mary-Anne Murphy


Intentions of this session

Intentions of this session...

To explore the following questions...

  • What are our understandings of "Assessment for Learning"?

  • What ICT's/Technologies are available to support Assessment for Learning practices?

  • How can these ICTs be utilised in a pedagogically sound manner?

Exploring our mental models around assessment


  • "Mental models are deeply ingrained assumptions, generalizations, or even pictures or images that influence how we understand the world and how we take action" “The Fifth Discipline” Peter Senge. (p. 8).

  • A chosen set of beliefs and method to interpret a given context; usually underpinned by a less-conscious paradigm or


If we are to explore the images we have in our minds around assessment, what might they look like and how might they be placed in relation to each other?

Draw assessment

Draw “assessment”

What does assessment look like to you?

Dialogue around our mental models of assessment

Dialogue around our Mental Models of Assessment

Questioner & Notetaker


  • The speaker will speak uninterrupted around their “drawing” whilst the other listens and takes notes of key words.

  • The questioner will then ask questions regarding what the person spoke about, in an effort to clarify or deepen their thinking. The questioner will also add anything else to their notes as this is happening.


Let’s explore our words.

What are you noticing?

What categories are starting to emerge?



From Latin: to sit beside

How does this definition link with your ideas?


Characteristics of Effective Assessment

Benefits students

Involves students

Supports teaching and learning goals

Is planned and communicated

Is suited to the purpose

Is valid and fair


What do you understand by these terms?

Assessment FOR Learning


Assessment OF Learning.

How do your words/categories relate to these concepts?

Share your thinking with a differentperson next to you.

So what is assessment for learning

So what is “Assessment for Learning?”

Let’s hear from Dylan Wiliam who was one of the co-authors of “Inside the Black Box”.

The characteristics of assessment that promote learning are that it

The characteristics of assessment that promote learning are that it:

  • Is embedded in a view of teaching and learning of which it is an essential part;

  • Involves sharing learning goals with pupils;

  • Aims to help pupils to know and to recognise the standards they are aiming at;

  • Involves pupils in self-assessment;

  • Provides feedback which leads to pupils recognising their next steps and how to take them;

  • Is underpinned by confidence that every pupil can improve;

  • Involves both teacher and pupils reviewing and reflecting on assessment data.

    Assessment for learning – Beyond the black Box, ARG, 1999


Some of the ways the characteristics can be achieved...

Having high expectations for learners

Identify student’s current achievement through observation, questioning, formal and informal testing.

Selecting examples of quality work to exemplify expectations and co-constructing progress with students.

Knowing progressions of learning of subject matter and skills

Provision of feedback that identifies achievement and determines next steps in learning.

How might I create opportunities that will enable students to be actively involved in their own learning?

Teachers and students clearly identify the intended learning outcomes for achievement.

Dialogue and questioning in order to develop metacognitive skills. Learning and thinking talk in the classroom.

Co-construction of criteria that describe the successful achievement of learning.

The use of student self and peer assessment practices

Planning for Learning. Making decisions about relevant and motivating learning tasks that engage the learner.

Adapted from Harlen: Principals of Assessment for Learning

Key questions to ask your students

Key questions to ask your students...

1. What do you think you are learning?

2. Why do you think you are learning this? 

3. How will you know you have learnt it? 

4. What do you think you need to do now to get better at …/ improve your learning in…?

5. How do you think you learn?

6. So what happens at school that helps you to learn? (I noticed your teacher x, why do you think they did this?)

7. How do the comments your teacher makes about your learning help you?

8. When you are learning, how do you think talking about your learning helps you to think?

What aspects of Formative Assessment do you consider each

question addresses? Discuss.


To what extent do you address these aspects within your current classroom practice?


So how might ict support formative assessment practices

So how might ICT support Formative Assessment practices.

Lets explore some options...

Scenario 1. You are wanting to capture collective and individual student thinking around their interpretation of an assigned reading. (scribblar)

Scenario 2. You have junior students who are at a pre-reading level and you wish to co-construct success criteria with them. (photovisi)

Scenario 3. You are wanting students to offer feedback to each other in relation to co-constructed success criteria. (wallwisher)

Now it s your turn

Now it’s your turn...

  • Look through the ICT tools on the wiki.

  • Consider one tool, or a combination of tools and share with the person next to you how you could see yourself or your students using it to support assessment for learning practices within your current class context.

But wait there s more to consider

But wait... there’s moreto consider...

Dialogue for Learning

What is Dialogue for Learning?

How can ICT support a dialogic approach to Assessment for Learning?

What is dialogue

What is dialogue?

  • "A process of communication in which two or more participants engage in an open exploration of issues and relationships on an equitable basis.

  • "Dialogue is the exchange of ideas, opinions, beliefs, and feelings between participants - both speakers and audience. It is listening with respect to others and being able to express one's own views with confidence.

  • "Dialogue is not silence, chaos or one person or faction monopolising the session.“

Dialogue for learning

Dialogue for learning…

“The dialogue between pupils and a

teacher should be thoughtful, reflective,

focused to evoke and explore

understanding, and conducted so that all

pupils have an opportunity to think and to

express their


Black & Wiliams, 2001

Inside the Black Box


Lets consider how we might use another ICT tool to support a dialogic Assessment for Learning approach.


You are wanting to capture dialogue you are having with a student about how they worked out a maths problem, so you can upload it to their learning profile/portfolio. (jing)


So what do we need to consider when seeking ICTs that will support Assessment for Learning practices?

  • Students actively involved and their learning at the heart of the process

  • Dialogue evident

  • Formative practices... Not ongoing summative practices.

  • Addresses characteristics of effective assessment.

  • ICT supports not leadsthe process.

Thanks for coming to this breakout

Thanks for coming to this breakout.

Mary-Anne Murphy

021 888 597

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