Who cares about WALT and WILF?

I have a confession to make. You see, it’s like this, officer. I can never remember what WALT and WILF stand for. I know they’re acronyms to do with assessment for learning, but I can never recall what the letters stand for.

But it’s worse than that, your honour. I don’t even care.

Wonder if THEY know who WALT and WILF are, or care? Photo by Aaron Brinker http://www.flickr.com/photos/sahdblunders/

Surely the whole point of assessment for learning is to:

  • ensure the pupils know what they’re going to be learning
  • ensure they know why they should learn it
  • ascertain what they have learnt…
  • … and “mislearnt”
  • determine, on the basis of such information, what happens next?

You don’t need hard-to remember acronyms, or loads of techniques — techniques that have a tendency to take on a life of their own and become almost an end in themselves.

You just need to have a proper conversation with your students, and care about what they are learning.

Whatever educational technology you decide to use for assessment purposes, the all-important thing to remember, in my opinion, is just that.