How I avoided descriptors – assessing against questions rather than criteria


In my subject, MFL, descriptors are everywhere and I’ve always disliked them, for the reasons given by Daisy Christodoulou in “Making Good Progress”. Here are some I descriptors I have come across:

Can write some single words from memory, with plausible spelling

OK – how about this: je    salu   sack   an   gomm   abite   mappell   onz

Can write simple words and several short phrases from memory, with understandable spelling

This maybe?je mapple         dan mon sack       jabite       fermay la port         eel y a   quell nombr

Can write words, phrases and short simple sentences from memory, with understandable spelling

This? je mappel Olivia       jai onz an       eel y a un livres dan sack     mon anniversary cest le 13 may

Yes – you can see “progress” But what is the difference between plausible and understandable? Who decides? And indeed, as a French national said to me, “they are all rubbish anyway.”


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