It’s about transferring knowledge from surface learning to deep learning, finding common knowledge between them and using a language of learning that we can all share.
Prestructural – not sure, it’s where we start off (e.g. what is a volcano?)Unistructural– it’s where we have one idea about something (e.g. lava comes out of volcanos,It’s a bit like a mountain, the lava that comes out is molten rock)Their knowledge (the three things) becomes multi structural. Multi structural – there are several strands of things that they know. We now know that lava comes out of volcanos, it’s a bit like a mountain, the lava that comes out is molten rock. Building up that multi structural base is vital, you can’t go much further without it. A lot of what we do in the classroom is about extending that multi structural knowledge. But it only stays on the surface unless we try and link those ideas together.Relational We then move on to the relational stage where we begin to relate these ideas together. The volcano is a bit like a mountain because the lava comes out of it and because it’s molten rock it cools and forms that mountain shape. He can usefully link those ideas together. It’s much more likely that that knowledge will stick because he understands the relationship between them. Extended abstract – we can hypothesize, we can start to think about ‘what would happen if there was water inside instead of lava? We know it wouldn’t make a mountain shape – what would happen?
Once they are familiar with it you can use the language of SOLO Taxonomy with your pupils. ‘I want your understanding of the power in MacBeth to move from unistructural to multistructural.’ And they will know that they have to connect their ideas together.
It is great for providing feedback – ‘so you know these features of volcanos, but can you connect them on a multi structural level?’
Laminated hexagons for a subject area, making links between the things that they know, making connections. Moving from multi structural to relational, from surface to deep thinking.
Blooms. The difference is that SOLO is based on a theory of teaching and learning and Blooms is about knowledge. Blooms is great for teaching, for planning and questioning, it’s not so good for students, you don’t hear them say ‘I’ve done applying now Miss, can I move on to analysing?’ SOLO provides clear links with mark schemes. It focuses on progress
SOLOTaxonomyDavid Didau@Learning Spy
What is it?SOLO (Structure of ObservedLearning Outcomes) is a model oflearning that helps develop acommon understanding &language of learning that helpsteachers (and students)understand the learning process.
5 typical ways to answer a questionPrestructuralI’m not sureabout thissubjectUnistructuralI have one ideaabout thissubjectMultistuctruralI have severalideas about thissubjectRelationalI can link my ideastogether to seethe big picture…Extended abstractI can look at theseideas in a new anddifferent way.
With SOLO we can…• Thoughtfully design learning intentions and learningexperiencesHow can sentence structure make yourwriting interesting?What are the effects of varyingsentence structures?What do you knowabout sentences?To understand the purpose of varying sentence structure
With SOLO we can…• Identify and use success criteria which enablestudents to make meaningful progressTo understand how power is presented in Macbeth• I know several things about power in Macbeth• I can find connections between the things I know• I can suggest reasons why Shakespeare might havemade these choices
With SOLO we can…• Provide feedback and feed forward onlearning outcomes which is simple tounderstand and straightforward to act on.Feedback: “How have you demonstrated that yourknowledge is multistructural?”Feed forward: “What do you need to do to make itrelational?”
“OK, so my work isn’t relational yet.How can I connect what I know?”ProgressRelationalUnderstandingfeedbackDeep &surfacelearningExtendedabstractMultistructuralKnowledgesuccesscriteriaLanguage oflearningassessmentOutcomes
“SOLO Taxonomy provides asimple and robust way ofdescribing how learningoutcomes grow in complexityfrom surface to deepunderstanding”Biggs & Collis 1982
The language of learningSOLO level VerbsUnistructural define, identify, name. draw, find, label, match,follow a simple procedureMultistuctural describe, list, outline, complete, continue,combineRelational sequence, classify, compare & contrast, explain(cause & effect), analyse, form an analogy,organise, distinguish, question, relate, applyExtendedabstractgeneralise, predict, evaluate, reflect,hypothesise, theorise, create, prove, justify,argue, compose, prioritise, design, construct,perform
Isn’t this a bit like Bloom’sTaxonomy?• SOLO is based upon a theory about teachingand learning rather than a theory aboutknowledge, (Hattie and Brown, 2004)• Bloom’s is ‘good’ for teachers:planning, questioning & checking learning• But not great for students:I’ve done applying sir, can I move on toanalysis now?• Progress is not implicit with Bloom’s
SOLO is better because:• It’s a diagnostic tool – provides usefulfeedback and makes next steps clear• It’s a useful assessment tool – clear links withrubrics• It can help plan objectives & success criteriawhich focus on progress• It describes the learning outcome
Tips for getting started• Getting to extended abstract requires you topose abstract questions:Does Shakespeare influence all modern writers?• But, in order to answer these questionsstudents need a big multistructural base ofknowledge• Students need to see that progress dependson finding the relationships between thisknowledge
Does Shakespeare influence all modern writers?How does Shakespeare compare to amodern playwright?Thinking SquaresWhat did he do and why?Who isShakespeare?
REVIEWDesign an activity which could introduce SOLOto your studentsHow could you use SOLO?What do you knowabout SOLO?
With SOLO we can…• thoughtfully design learning intentions andlearning experiences• identify and use effective success criteria• provide feedback and feed forward onlearning outcomes• reflect meaningfully on what to do next
Next steps• http://taitcoles.wordpress.com/• http://lisajaneashes.edublogs.org/• http://learningspy.co.uk/Special thanks to Tait Coles @Totallywired77whose ideas have been used liberally in thispresentation