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For education experts Hodgen and Wiliam, as detailed in their 2006 and 2011 publications, identifying where a learner is in their understanding of a concept and responding accordingly is one of the most important parts of teaching. To address this, Craig Barton, our Co-Founder and Director of Education, and a teacher himself for many years, developed Diagnostic Questions, an assessment tool using multiple choice questions to provide insights into student understanding in a fraction of the time.
Students are set a quiz at the end of each topic and again three weeks later. The process of forgetting and retrieving information is important in the learning process (Bjork, 2011) and three weeks is the optimal time to retest students to get a more reliable sense of their understanding of a given topic. We want students to understand, not just learn, each topic
By giving explanations, students not only give teachers an insight into their thought process but they also benefit from the Self-Explanation Effect; by explaining the solution to themselves, learners develop a deeper understanding of the topic. This has been tested numerous times, by Chi (2000), Siegler (2002) and Rittle-Johnson (2006). Incorrect explanations are also beneficial; Chi asserted that incorrect self-explanations, so long as they are pointed out, lead to cognitive conflict, which leads to long-term learning.
Desforges and Abouchaar (2003) found that parental involvement has a significant positive effect on children’s achievement. Parents have told us that they want to help out with their student’s studies, but they’re often unsure how to get more involved. That is where our Parent Reports come in. By showing a parent exactly how a student is doing, where their areas of weaknesses are, and offering practical advice and resources to help them resolve any issues, we make it easier for parents to play a proactive role in students’ learning.