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Using WWW/EBI in Peer- and Self-Assessment

As teachers, we often set students a task to complete. But, how do we end the activity? Is it right to just say ‘stop now, the class is over?‘ Although it is tempting to finish it this way, especially if we are running out of time, this does not promote any reflection. Students are unable to take any responsibility for their learning, as they do not have any time to consider how they completed the activity and what skills they used.

Instead of letting the activity run to the end of class, we can end their independent work a few minutes earlier and use ‘What Went Well (WWW) and ‘Even Better If (EBI).’

Let’s now discover what this strategy is and how to use it…

WWW stands for What Went Well. This encourages students to think about what they did in the task that went effectively. Meanwhile, EBI stands for Even Better If. This means students need to reflect on what they could do next time to improve. It is useful to tell the students to use the acronyms ‘WWW’ and ‘EBI’. Targets and positive comments should be based on the skills learnt in the task.

WWW and EBI can be used in individual, pair, group and whole class situations.

For example:​

  • Whole Class: “As a group, we have all understood how to……. However, we all need to work on….. We will now complete this task to develop this skill.”​
  • Individual: “Here are your marked pieces of work back. Can you write down at the bottom of the sheet what you did that made you successful and what you need to do to be better next time please?”​
  • Pair: “Can you swap books with the person next to you and read their work, writing down WWW (what went well…) and EBI (even better if…) beneath their piece of work.​
  • Group: “Choose 2 members from the group you just worked with and tell them what they were great at and a target to work on next time

When telling students to use WWW and EBI, it is important that they use language that is constructive not destructive, especially when they are giving feedback on somebody else’s work. Even as teacher, when somebody watches my lesson, it is not productive to use negative language for the targets. Imagine the difference between saying ‘Precious did not behave well in your lesson’ versus ‘Next time, think about how you might manage student’s behaviour, for example, Precious in this lesson. Confidence can be easily destroyed if we do not make achievable, constructive targets – it is the same for our students!

WWW vocabulary​ to encourage:

  • ‘Well done on…’​
  • ‘I like how you….’​
  • ‘It was clear that you…’​

​Meanwhile these phrases are useful for EBI:

  • ‘Next time, you might want to…​
  • ‘Try to…’​
  • ‘It could be useful to….’​

To learn more about this strategy, download this poster below.

To learn more about this strategy, take our course Developing Students’ Independent Learning Skills. Part 1 is free!

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