Assessment for learning in science

Plenty of resources to support teachers in developing their practice in assessment for learning.  These resources accompany the Triple Science Support guide to assessment for learning.

The Triple Science Support intervention guides and supporting resources are packed full of ideas and examples of evidence-based good practice, and will support you in going beyond short term, bolt on interventions to look at issues such as progression, tracking progress and how best to structure learning so students gain a deep, long term understanding of the science.

Links and Resources

Questioning Stem Bookmark

This is very useful tool for planning effective questioning.  The idea is to print the PDF and fold it in half and then laminate or glue it to make a bookmark. You can then keep the bookmark in a planner or on your desk to help plan for or think of questions to use in the lesson.

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Classroom Talk - Banishing the Quiet Classroom

 Chris Harrison explains the importance of classroom talk in learning and describes some strategies that can help teachers facilitate dialogue and orchestrate discussion. 

"In these days of accountability, schools are judged against a myriad of criteria to determine whether they are successful and yet perhaps the clearest indicator of learning – classroom talk – is rarely selected as a measure of successful learning"

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Linear Assessment Chapter 3: Developing Learning

This is part of an ibook, produced by the Science Learning Centres for the Triple Science Support Programme, which looks at teaching and learning in triple science. 

Included are two sections which:

• Reflect on the essential role of assessment for learning in effective teaching
• Explore misconceptions

publication year
2010 to 2019

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Chemical Misconceptions - Part 2

A full set of resources designed to assess students' understanding in chemistry, with some suggested follow-up activities to address misconceptions.

publication year
2000 - 2009

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Assessment for Learning

Produced by LSIS, these materials offer examples of how Assessment for Learning can be built into teaching and learning sessions. They include a video which examines how a range of strategies can be used to assess students' understanding. There is a session plan which gives detailed guidance on how to set up and run an activity into magnetic fields and electric motors. This includes a suggested approach to help teachers and trainers assess learning.

publication year
2000 - 2009

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Improving Teaching and Learning in Science

The video on promoting discussion is very useful for seeing how students can develop their thinking by discussing questions in groups, giving the teacher a good insight into students' understanding

publication year
2000 - 2009

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Unit 10: Group work videos

Six short videos showing effective groupwork strategies

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Strengthening Teaching and Learning in Science Through Using Different Pedagogies

Within this resource are:

Unit 1 - Using group talk and argument: explores why using group talk and setting up conditions for healthy argument is important; provides guidance on how various groupings can be used in the laboratory and gives advice on choosing a stimulus for group talk.

Unit 2 - Active questioning: brings together advice on questioning as a tool for students’ learning and helps teachers to plan for questioning to stimulate higher-order thinking

publication year
2000 - 2009

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Teacher Questioning in Science Classrooms

This research aimed to find out how teachers use questions in classroom discourse to scaffold student thinking and help students construct scientific knowledge.

Thirty-six lessons covering a range of topics were observed across a variety of lesson structures such as expository teaching, whole-class discussions, and laboratory work.  Particular attention was paid to questioning exchanges that stimulated productive thinking in students, as manifested by their verbal responses.

A framework was developed that included four questioning approaches adopted by the teachers. This included Socratic questioning, verbal jigsaw, semantic tapestry, and framing.

The paper describes these various questioning approaches, their features, and the conditions under which they were used. It also discusses the implications of these approaches for instructional practice.

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