Rob Coe

/Tag: Rob Coe

Should we scrap SATs? Cautiously, yes

2019-04-20T11:11:05+01:00April 20th, 2019|assessment|

Earlier this week, Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn turned up at the NEU annual conference with some crowd pleasing ideas. The most eye-catching of these was that he would, if elected, scrap SATs, saying, "We need to prepare children for life, not just exams". Cue rapturous applause from the assembled trade unionists. None of this is particularly surprising, but what does intrigue me is why Corbyn and the NEU want to get rid of SATs. For Corbyn's part, he says, "SATs and the regime of extreme pressure testing are giving young children nightmares and leaving them in floods of tears."Of course, this [...]

More good proxies for learning

2016-11-28T22:40:07+01:00November 28th, 2016|learning|

A few days ago, I wrote about a brief online discussion I had with Dan Willingham on the importance of thinking hard. In the comments, Greg Ashman pointed out that thinking hard cannot be the only way in which learning happens, how else, he asks, would we explain the success of Zig Englemann's Direct Instruction programme? Although I'm not totally convinced that students receiving Direct Instruction don't have to think hard, it's certainly true to say that they're not expected to struggle. Think also about rote memorisation. Most people would probably agree that memorising your times tables doesn't requires thinking hard. [...]

Can thinking hard be incidental? A conversation with Daniel Willingham

2016-11-27T17:08:36+01:00November 27th, 2016|Featured|

For some time now, Rob Coe has been suggesting that a good proxy for students learning in lessons is that they "have to think hard". This seemed eminently sensible and I've written about this formulation on a number of occasions, most recently here. I saw Rob speak at a conference on Friday and tweeted the following: "Learning happens when you have to think hard." How many minutes do children spend in a day really thinking hard? Asks @ProfCoe — David Didau (@LearningSpy) November 25, 2016 Rob suggested the answer might be as little as 10 minutes a day and that this [...]

What Dr Fox teaches us about the importance of subject knowledge

2016-09-04T19:23:11+01:00September 4th, 2016|psychology|

In 1970, psychologists and psychiatrists were invited to a lecture on "Mathematical Game Theory as Applied to Physician Education." The lecture, supposedly given by Dr Myron L. Fox, a graduate of the Albert Einstein College of Medicine and a student of the great John van Neumann, was actually given by an actor who knew nothing about either Game Theory or Physical Education.The audience of MDs and PhDs were in fact unwitting subjects in a study conducted by Donald Naftulin, John Ware, and Frank Donnelly on 'educational seduction'. They were divided into two groups; one group was given a lecture by an actual scientist [...]