Evaluating the philosophy sessions
The Philosophy Foundation is constantly re-evaluating its methods for measuring impact and the outcomes of its methodology in the classroom. By using a range of impact measurement tools to capture quantitative and qualitiative data we strive to create a full picture of what is going well in the classroom - we capture this each year in our Social Impact Report, which you can find more information about by following the link.
Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like more information about how to measure the impact that philosophy is having in your classroom.
Though by no means exhaustive, we have identified some candidate core intellectual virtues (excellences/competencies/dispositions/sensitivities) that it is hoped the children in classrooms will develop through doing philosophy that also have application in other subjects. They are cross-referenced to show their interdependence. You may also notice that critical thinking skills are absent, this is because the intellectual virtues have been distinguished from intellectual tools and one’s familiarity with them. In this list critical thinking skills are captured under virtue 20.
You may be able to develop an assessment tool for these competencies using this list.
We are currently introducing an evaluation system collecting feedback from the key three categories of people that we work with; specialists, teachers and pupils.
For specialists and teachers we send online surveys to gain feedback about sessions that we run. We aim to send out these surveys at the end each half term.
Collating the information we receive means that we can measure a variety of things. We can see what our specialists and the teachers that we are working with, are saying about the sessions and how they feel about them. It allows everyone to comment on the session and let them be heard.
The idea behind this is that we want to know what the specialists and teachers think about the sessions. Knowing what they think means that we can act on what they say, rather than merely measuring improvements as was previously done by the pupil tracker. Therefore, this makes our current strategy, a tool for change rather than simply measuring how effective we are.
Pupils also have the chance to feedback on paper evaluation forms. Pupils have this opportunity when we run a full day of philosophy at the school, which allows them to feedback on the day as a whole. We collate this information to provide summaries of the things that went well and need work after each workshop.