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Exam Wrapper


Social-Emotional Learning ^21st Century Skills Middle/High School Strategy


Self-regulation Verbal Reasoning Verbal Memory Abstract Reasoning Visual Memory

Exam Wrapper

If your students focus only on their grade and do not take time to review their mistakes or reflect on your feedback

How To Apply It!

  1. Exam wrappers can be an effective way to have students learn from their mistakes rather than focus only on the grade.
  2. Exam wrappers are handouts that accompany a graded exam with the goal to have students reflect on what they learned rather than just on the grade. Some teachers provide an exam wrapper without a grade!
  3. The exam wrapper provides each student with personalized instruction on how to reflect on their test performance (why they had correct and incorrect answers), how they think they prepared for the test given the results, and plans for improving.
  4. Students are asked to review their exam and respond to the exam wrapper.
  5. Ideally, students learn to use tests as an opportunity to improve, understand their strengths, and grow from their mistakes.

Why It Works (the Science Of Learning)!

The concept of exam wrappers comes from the Carnegie Mellon's Eberly Center which devised exam wrappers to address the problem of students focusing only on the grade. Exam wrappers promote thoughtful reflection which improves metacognition. If students never reflect on their mistakes they are less likely to learn and improve. They might even embed their incorrect answers in long-term memory.