Formative feedback




Here are some examples of feedback from a fraction test such as we discussed earlier.

Which is more useful for moving forward learning?

Firstly, you got 5 out of 10 for adding and subtracting fractions.

Secondly, you have a problem with denominators when you are adding and subtracting fractions.

Thirdly, you know how to add and subtract like fractions and you can successfully make like fractions where one denominator is a multiple of the other. You have difficulty finding a common denominator where one denominator is not a multiple of the other. Reviewing whole number multiples and equivalence of fractions will help you progress.

It is clear to see that the third example of feedback is most useful for learning. You can see that the learner receives feedback on what they can do, what they cannot do, what they are expected to be able to do so that they can see and understand their gap, and how they move forward in their learning to bridge that gap.

It is through formative feedback that learners learn how to analyse the evidence of their learning (or their lack of learning) and this self-analysis is a powerful tool for becoming an independent agent of one’s own learning.




  1. How am I doing?by Jan Chappius
  2. Seven Keys to Effective Feedback – by Grant Wiggins
  3. Feedback to support lifelong learning – by John Morris, Luke Mandouit, Natalie Rens & Tim Smith