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Collective Teacher Efficacy works, Really!

Updated: Nov 28, 2022

When a group of teachers believe that collectively they can make a difference in students' learning and their outcomes, great things are bound to happen!

Image (c) Visible Learning Plus –

Teachers make important decisions intentionally to develop a culture of learning in their classrooms. Imagine the collective power if teachers across a year group start making decisions together, believing they can make a big difference in student outcomes. They collectively create, implement, monitor and measure! John Hattie describes this as Collective Teacher Efficacy, and the effect size is 1.57.

During our school's journey of developing a Feedback culture in our classrooms, collaboration and gritty conversations helped my team to have a shared understanding of feedback. We began our journey with some questions:

Which stage of learning should students seek feedback?

Is there any specific time for peer feedback?

Which feedback is most effective?

This book helped us to think fresh and look for new answers. I recommend this book if you are nosey and would like to develop a feedback system in your classrooms and Year group. After thorough research, we came up with our version of The Learning Cycle (suggested in the book). We called ours the Effective Feedback Cycle.

I am not a feedback expert, but I can suggest that clarity about different kinds of feedback and when to use them helped my team tremendously. We have a consistent language and tight systems set in our classrooms. We can count on each others' successes and repeat them in our classrooms. As a team, we are much more confident to bring the data to the table and challenge our assumptions.

Effective Feedback Cycle Step one: Start a lesson with prior knowledge starter!

Always begin with students' prior knowledge. Student to Teacher Feedback

To move forward with any learning, remember to gauge what students know already and understand at that given point. It may include conducting diagnostics at the start of a new concept and planning a small introduction to every lesson. The purpose of the lesson starter is to help students recognize and reveal their prior knowledge about the topic. The lesson starter leads to a self-assessment moment for students at the start of every lesson.

A lesson starter does not need to be a big thing but a small question that students need to answer, just like an exit ticket. Kindly check the resource section to find some lesson starters. I will be shortly adding a bank.

Step Two: Sharing the Learning intention of a lesson

Feedback Begins with knowing what the learning is all about.

Research states that learning intentions help students transfer their skills and apply them in a new setting. The learning intention adds clarity and helps students connect the success criteria to the task. Without it, students have no idea how learning might be evaluated.

The learning tasks become guesses work where students are left to guesswork what their teacher wants them to do.

Learning intentions should introduce both knowledge (that students have to acquire) and skills (that they will use to gain that knowledge).

I use split screen in all our lessons, and this is what the learning intentions in my class look like:

Where are we going: As inquirers we are going to learn what is ecosystem?

( knowledge)

As readers we are going to be take notes. ( skill required for students to understand about ecosystem

Or for Literacy

Where are we going: As writers we are learning how to organise our writing in paragraphs? ( knowledge)

As learners we are going to be analyse ( skill required for students to understand the structure of paragraphs)

You can see these Learning intentions are decontextualised and specific, but not too precise.

Step Three: Co-creating the success criteria with students

Teacher to Students feedback : What does success look like?

Success criteria should answer the question: How will I know I am successful in learning or completing a task? It should make the learning intention visible to both teachers and students.

Suggestion: Create one good and one bad example of the task to show what makes learning successful. Next, ask students to create a list of items that made one of the examples successful. Here is an example of how I co-constructed the SC using two examples. Seeing a good example and a bad one helps students recognise the difference between good and better and what they need to include to be successful. Thus, students have more ownership over their learning. Secondly, when criteria are co-constructed with students, teachers have more assurance that students understand what to do.

Step Four: Mid lesson stops

Teacher to Student feedback : What can be enhanced?

The mid-lesson stop should happen once all students have understood the learning intentions and success criteria. Students spend some time on the task. At that moment, the teacher chooses a student's work and brings the class's attention to the best bits of the student's work. It is a great way to help students compare their learning with someone else's.

Suggestion: I usually take students' permission before sharing their work with the class. If a student is not ready to share, I choose someone else who has included some parts of the success criteria. Since the work belongs to a student, the whole class is motivated and engaged in the conversation. The prerequisite for this to happen successfully is to ensure students understand the purpose of this kind of feedback.

The class has to recognise how the chosen student has used the Success criteria and give the student some feedback; for example - two Glow ( best bits) and 1 grow ( one thing to improve/enhance).

You may watch Austin's butterfly lesson to understand how to conduct a mid-lesson stop.

Step Five: Self-assessment

Student to self feedback : Important time to build self-efficacy

After the mid-lesson stop students should be given time to complete and conduct a self-review. It can be frustrating for a student if a peer gives feedback before the students make the changes on their own. Have the Success criteria visible and ask students to check they have included everything. Let them underline, highlight, or fill out a rubric and edit and make changes.

Step Six: Cooperative Peer Feedback

Student to student feedback

The right time to call for peer feedback is when students have finished the task and students have ample opportunities to conduct the self-assessment. Students are ready to share ideas with a buddy, and they become the teacher. The purpose of peer feedback is to give specific feedback and improves each other's learning.

In my class, I have set up a system where any student who has finished the task can write their name on the board and buddy up with a student whose name is already there. This way, students do not rely on the teacher and do not disturb the rest of the class. The success criteria of the task are always accessible for students to use and give feedback.


Almarode, J., Fisher, D., Thunder, K., & Frey, N. (2021). The success criteria playbook. Corwin.

Hattie, J., & Clarke, S. (2021). Visible Learning Feedback. Routledge.


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