ReflectionsCo-creating success criteria

Co-creating success criteria

In class, I usually write the learning intentions on the whiteboard and don’t look at success criteria more than the result of the learning intentions. After watching Con Hurley’s (Sligo Education Center, 2024) presentation on how to Make formative assessment work for me and my students, I gathered that there are smart ways to use success criteria that would take the assessment load from the teacher and transfer it to the student and peers, making their learning more efficient and organic.  

Mr. Hurley states the difference between product and process success criteria. While first is highly contextualised, the knowledge is not transferable and students are dependent on you, students finishing the same looking artwork given the steps, the second sets a standard, a formula that students can apply and have different results, for example the general rules of the proportions of the head. Applying process success criteria, the student becomes responsible for their own learning, making it more effective. Mr. Hurley proceeds and distinguishes between closed and open success criteria, between setting rules (graph learning, steps when multiplying), or between learning new tools to develop skills (writing music, drawing, and construction). Both are transferable and can be co-created and used with and by the students.

The questions are: What are the rules that can be transferred from one topic to the next? What are tools that can be transferred from one topic to another? How do I get the information from the student? This method can be applied successfully in the art classroom, as there are many transferrable processes. For example, you learn the process of linoprinting once, acquire the skill by learning the tools and the process, and then apply it over and over again. Also, drawing information from the students is key. Probing their prior knowledge can lead to surprising examples, opening possibilities for peer learning. Also, effective questioning is key. Mr. Hurley uses effective questioning given a bad versus good example of a diagram: What is missing? What one has, the other doesn’t. Building the success criteria from their answers. For the final assessment, students have their co-created success criteria printed, and coupled in two, they are marking their results through peer assessment and final reflection.

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