What is Visible Learning

Prof. John Hattie’s definition

“Visible teaching and learning occurs when learning is the explicit goal, when it is appropriately challenging, when the teacher and the student both (in their various ways) seek to ascertain whether and to what degree the challenging goal is attained, when there is deliberate practice aimed at attaining mastery of the goal, when there is feedback given and sought, and when there are active, passionate, and engaging people (teacher, student, peers, and so on) participating in the act of learning.”

What Works Best

  • .Reverse effect
  • .Developmental effect
  • .Teacher effect
  • .Zone of desired effect

Professor Hattie’s Visible Learning research into what works best in education synthesizes findings from over 1,400 meta-analyses of 80,000 studies, involving more than 300 million students.

He ranks 252 influences and effect sizes related to student achievement. The average effect size (Cohen’s d) of all of these influences is 0.4. To put it another way, 0.4 = 1 year's normal academic gain, 0.8 = 2 year's gain and 1.2 = 3 year's gain.

The top 10 influences on Student Achievement

  • 1 1.57 Collective teacher capability
  • 2 1.33 Student expectations (of their own performance)
  • 3 1.29 Teacher estimates of student achievement
  • 4 1.29 Cognitive task analysis (how well a student performs a task)
  • 5 1.29 Response to intervention (seeks to prevent academic failure through early intervention and frequent progress measurement)
  • 6 1.28

    Piagetian programs (teaching methods based on Jean Piaget’s concept of children’s stages of learning)

  • 7 1.20 Jigsaw method (group learning where a knowledge area is broken up into multiple groups of 4 or 6 students)
  • 8 0.99 Conceptual change program (a process to correct errors of underlying misconception, not simple errors)
  • 9 0.94 Prior ability
  • 10 0.93 Strategy to integrate with prior knowledge

My Sprint and Visible Learning

Understanding what influences student achievement in isolation isn’t a sure fire recipe for student success. It’s only when these insights are baked into a purpose designed system that you really start to enjoy the potential benefits.

Visible learning informs how we define student impact, how we diagnose skill and capability gaps, how we intervene to achieve different learning outcomes and how we measure and evaluate impact for every student.

We’re dedicated to achieving every student’s full learning potential.

John Hattie

Laureate Professor John Hattie Director, Melbourne Education Research Institute, The University of Melbourne Director, Melbourne Graduate School of Education, The University of Melbourne

Professor John Hattie is literally a freak of education. He has dedicated his life to proving what really works to maximise achievement in every child. When John published his first book Visible Learning in 2009 The Times of the UK called it the “holy grail of education“. He followed this with Visible Teaching for Teachers in 2012 and since then has published another 10 books to build on the application of his work for various audiences.

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