The development of formative assessment strategies, to enhance learning and teaching and improve pupil outcomes, has remained central to the development of curriculum and improvement initiatives across Scottish education (Hayward and Hutchison, 2013). The endorsement of an Assessment is for Learning (AifL) approach within the Scottish educational context to meet the improvement objectives outlined in policy such as ‘The National Framework for Improvement’ by The Scottish Government (2019) relies heavily upon the use of high quality formative assessment. Clark (2012) highlights the significance of this approach, stating that formative assessment can have a profoundly positive impact on levels of pupil self- efficacy, engagement and motivation across the curriculum.
The use of verbal feedback, as formative assessment in the primary classroom, can influence levels of pupil engagement and motivation across learning. This method of formative assessment is effective in promoting positive outcomes whilst remaining inclusive in nature (Francis, 2013). Given the limitations of the digital learning environment, it was essential that practitioners reflected upon the most inclusive and effective methods of providing feedback to identify and discuss next steps for learning with pupils and thus continue to meet the needs of all learners as outlined in ‘Getting it Right for Every Child’ (The Scottish Government, 2008). Indeed, whilst it can be argued that feedback can have a potentially powerful impact on learning and attainment, the specific method of provision can also significantly influence its ability to enhance outcomes for all (Hattie and Timperely, 2007). Therefore, this enquiry sought to analyse the impact that the incorporation of audio feedback, specifically, had on levels of pupil engagement and progress within the digital learning context.
The principal aim of this enquiry was to identify the ways in which pupils engage with and respond to feedback in the digital learning environment and to explore the impact of audio feedback on pupil progress and confidence across the digital curriculum.