Engage with the Professional Standards through self-evaluation.

As part of engagement in Professional Update, individuals should self-evaluate using the Professional Standards relevant to their context.

Self-evaluation can take many forms and may occur at various stages in the professional learning journey. It will also involve a range of sources to help inform you.

The Professional Standards are one key reference but other sources may also form part of your self-evaluation, such as your own Professional Review and Development (PRD) areas for development and school/ department/ organisation’s improvement plan.

What is self-evaluation and why is it important?

Self-evaluation should be a useful process that is rigorous and enables you to be critically reflective about yourself as a professional and your practice.

Self-evaluation should support you to:

  • Reflect on what you have done
  • Think about what you might do next
  • Consider your own progress and development
  • Deeply understand your professional practice, your professional learning and the impact of this on: your thinking; professional actions; those you work with/support; and pupils/students and their learning

Self-evaluation will involve:

  • Asking deep and searching questions about self and practice
  • Using the GTC Scotland Professional Standards to inform and guide your reflections
  • Using other influencing factors such as school or dept improvement plan; other standards or targets; issues relevant to your particular context
  • Using your ongoing reflections and enquiry into practice
  • Considering the needs of learners/colleagues in your context
  • Using evidence from a range of sources to inform and support your self-evaluation

The self-evaluation process will enable you to:

  • Plan for meaningful professional learning
  • Engage in critically reflective dialogue as part of the PRD process
  • Identify and focus on areas you wish to develop expertise or accomplishment
  • Consider your career planning
How should I self-evaluate?

There are many approaches to self-evaluation and a number of tools that will help support the process.

Some tools allow you to engage in a more critically reflective evaluation and others simply offer a ‘quick temperature check’ which are useful but do not provide that opportunity to dig deeper which is required.

Some key questions will help to frame your self-evaluation:

  • What will help inform me in my self-evaluation? And why will it be useful?
  • How do I know? What evidence do I have from my practice/professional reading?
  • Why is this important to me?
  • What Professional Standard(s) and which aspects within it are most relevant to me and why?

You can find a workbook and interactive PowerPoint on Professional Standards and Professional Learning, on the Professional Learning page.

Using a self-evaluation wheel for reflection and self-evaluation against the Professional Standards

What is a self-evaluation wheel?

A self-evaluation wheel, also known as a coaching wheel, is a valuable tool for supporting self-evaluation.

Using a wheel can help you to explore current reality and critically reflect on yourself as a professional and your practice.

A self-evaluation wheel can help you to create clarity about the areas of the Professional Standard(s) you wish to focus on and perform a simple gap analysis about where you are now, and where you would like to be.

You may use this independently or as part of a structured coaching discussion.

Find out more about Coaching and Mentoring

Plotting your self-evaluation wheel

Take a few minutes to complete your wheel. Consider each point on the wheel in turn.

Think about where you might gauge yourself on the wheel and mark the number that matches your thoughts with a dot:

  • 0 = really not confident/lots of areas to develop or work on;
  • 10 = feel very confident/accomplished in this area.

Think about ‘why’ you place yourself on that point on the scale. You may want to make some notes on the side.

Join the dots around your wheel.

Looking at your completed self-evaluation wheel and ask yourself:

  • What do I notice?
  • What stands out?
  • What’s the gap?
  • What’s my priority?
  • What’s most important?
  • What’s a key strength?
  • How might these areas impact on each other?

See more reflective questions below.

Coaching conversations

The self-evaluation wheels also work well when used with a partner.

Once you have finished mapping your thoughts on your wheel, swap wheels and encourage your partner to reflect upon their wheel and any observations they may have.

Ask them:

  • What do you notice?
  • What stands out?
  • What’s the gap?
  • What’s your priority?
  • What’s most important?
  • What is the key strength?
Reflective questions for a self-evaluation wheel

From your reflections or coaching discussions, select an area/areas of the standard you wish to explore in more depth.

You may wish to use the full standard or summary guide on the back of each wheel to unpack this in more detail.

These reflective questions may be useful:

  • How is ‘this area of the standard’ reflected in your work context?
  • Where would you like to be with ‘this part of the standard’ in 6 months/this time next year?
  • How would you coach a colleague to help them further develop ‘this part of the standard’?
  • How will you seek ongoing feedback concerning ‘this part of the standard’?
  • What resource do you need to better develop ‘this part of the standard’?
  • What development needs do you have concerning ‘this part of the standard’?
  • How do you plan your professional learning to enable you to develop in these areas? What support would you require to meet those needs?
  • In what ways do you engage with professional literature, theory, research and policy to challenge and inform your thinking and practice?
  • How do you share accomplishments and expertise with colleagues?
  • How do you lead developments within and beyond the school community?
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