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British Council

Teaching and Assessing Core Skills

British Council via FutureLearn

This course may be unavailable.


Help your students succeed by building their core skills

Employers are demanding higher-order cognitive skills from their workforces, so it’s crucial that young people have access to education that supports the development of core skills to help them succeed.

This course will guide you through how to capture student achievement and plan progression in core skills. You’ll work through examples of how this can be carried out in the classroom with opportunities to practice these new techniques in your own context.

Understand how to break down teaching core skills

On this course, you’ll learn the Skills Builder approach which breaks down core skills into manageable steps. This approach will allow you to target and understand students’ progress over time.

You’ll also learn the six principles of building skills to give you a simple conceptual framework for building students’ key skills that you can put into practice in your school environment.

Develop an action plan for embedding progression in core skills

Once you’ve mastered the principles, you’ll build an effective project to support the progression of core skills in your own school. You’ll then share, review, and refine this project with other learners on the course and with support from the course educators.

Reflecting on common challenges and solutions is vital, so you’ll share what has worked well before creating an action plan for how you’ll continue to build the core skills of your students.

Learn from the experts at the British Council

The British Council is the UK’s international organisation for cultural relations and educational opportunities. They have created this course to give you the tools to help students build their core skills. Being able to develop cognitive skills such as leadership, critical thinking, and collaboration, will help them succeed in the future.

This course is aimed at teachers and school leaders looking to build their students’ core skills. The course does not require any previous knowledge of core skills.

This course references resources from the Skill Builder Hub.

To participate fully in the course, Learners will need to register for a Hub account

Registration is free and all of the resources referenced in the course are free to access.


  • Introducing core skills
    • Introduction to the course
    • What are the core skills and why do they matter?
    • The Skills Builder framework
    • Breaking down the core skills into steps
    • Week 1 reflections
  • Exploring the Skills Builder framework
    • Introduction
    • The Skills Builder framework
    • Teaching the steps of a skill
    • Putting Skills Builder into action
    • Introducing the principles of teaching and assessing core skills
    • Week 2 reflections
  • The principles of teaching and assessing core skills
    • Introduction
    • Measuring it: assessing your students' progression in the core skills
    • Focusing tightly
    • Focusing tightly: an example
    • Keep practising
    • Week 3 reflections
  • Developing an action plan to build your students' core skills
    • Introduction
    • Action planning: getting started
    • Action planning: concepts
    • Building on foundations
    • Week 4 reflections

Taught by

Chris Cavey


4.8 rating at FutureLearn based on 110 ratings

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