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Our research and the meta-analysis research of Hattie (2009) suggest “feedback” as an essential teaching practice that increases student learning. Specifically, Hattie’s findings support need to:

Offer feedback (teachers to students, students to students)

Offer feedback loops between teacher and student on small units of well-defined, appropriately sequenced instruction.

Data chats are a formal way of offering such feedback. The type of feedback, the time at which the feedback is provided, and the way teachers advise students will determine if students stay engaged in the learning process and better yet, own their learning.

We recently conducted a survey of middle school teachers and students in which we asked them about their use (teachers) and participation (students) in data chats (N ≈ 500). Twenty percent of teachers responding to the survey stated that they do not have data chats with their students, while an average of 40% of the students responding reported not having data chats with their teachers by subject areas.

These responses show a need to provide high quality, on-going professional development and coaching about data chats for these teachers so that the they are able to plan, develop, implement and assess student learning geared to the students’ individual needs. Bottom line? As teachers we need to constantly create ways for students to receive descriptive feedback about their performance.





Read more about effective teaching practices in Studer Education’s Formula
titled Effective Teacher GPA available here.

Interested in participating in the Effective Teacher GPA questionnaire to reflect on your teaching practices and have your responses included in our national database? Participate here.

Hattie, John. 2009. Visible Learning: A Synthesis of Over 800 Meta-Analyses Relating to Achievement. New York, NY: Routledge.

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