Embedding Formative Assessment [completed]

This project will test a two-year professional development programme on formative assessment. This is based around a pack, “Embedding Formative Assessment” (EFA), which includes materials schools need to deliver 18 monthly internal workshops (“Teacher Learning Communities”) involving all teachers from across the school, working together in groups of 8-12. Formative assessment involves teachers using evidence of pupils’ understanding and learning to make decisions, minute-by-minute and day-by-day, about the next steps in teaching and learning. This evidence could also be used when planning lessons or differentiating activities for individual pupils. When assessing formatively, the feedback given by teachers moves learners forward. Students are developed to be owners of their own learning and support each other to progress. The pack was developed by renowned educationalist Dylan Wiliam with SSAT.


This evaluation is being run as a school-level randomised controlled trial. SSAT will recruit 120 schools, who NIESR randomly allocate to receive the intervention or be in the control group. NIESR is evaluating the impact of the interventions using GCSE results. In addition, we are also conducting a process evaluation to establish fidelity of the delivery.

Timescale and funder

The evaluation is funded by the Education Endowment Foundation (EEF). It began in 2015 and an Evaluation Report was published in July 2018.

More information about the project is available on the Education Endowment Foundation website.

Research programmes