Author Blog

If Ruby's 7Cs really matter we should try and assess them

Bill Lucas makes the case for measuring capabilities

In 2018 PISA will be reporting on a new domain, Global Competence. The test will measure analytical and critical thinking skills as well as intercultural understanding of global issues. It will also survey students’ attitudes through questionnaires to gauge their openness towards people from other cultures, respect for cultural otherness, global-mindedness and responsibility. 

In 2015 PISA tested another innovative domain, collaborative problem-solving, and, looking ahead, it has an ambitious programme for tackling related new capabilities. Sitting alongside established subjects - reading, maths and science – PISA is signalling to the world that, as well as discipline-based knowledge, other capabilities matter too. As Andreas Schleicher puts it:

Ensuring that all people have a solid foundation of knowledge and skills must be the central aim of the post-2015 education agenda. This is not primarily about providing more people with more years of schooling; in fact, that is only the first step. It is most critically about making sure that individuals acquire a solid foundation of knowledge in key disciplines, that they develop creative, critical thinking and collaborative skills, and that they build the character attributes such as mindfulness, curiosity, courage and resilience.

In other words, reading, maths, science, history, art, music and so forth are just a first step in a complex world. They are necessary but not sufficient for anyone learning, living and working in these challenging and fast-moving times where artificial intelligence, mass migration, growing religious intolerance and globalization are just some of the real-world issues we face.

Or as Ruby might put it, she will need every ounce of confidence, curiosity, collaboration, communication, creativity, commitment and craftsmanship if she is truly to thrive.

You can read the rest of Bill's blog here. It was first published online by the TES.