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Assessing Pupils' Progress (APP) in English

Publication date:
Aug 2008
Head of school department, Subject leader, Teacher
Assessing Pupils' Progress (APP), Assessment, Initial teacher training (ITT), Pupil progress, Subject specific guidance
Key document


This publication is available in a ZIP file (32.3 MB). (The contents of this zip file can be downloaded from the attachments area to the right.)

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What is APP?

APP is a structured approach to pupil assessment in English so teachers can:

  • track pupils' progress in reading and writing through Key Stage 3
  • use diagnostic information about pupils' strengths and weaknesses.

Based on the assessment focuses (AFs) that underpin National Curriculum assessment, the approach improves the quality and reliability of teachers' assessment. It has proved to be robust, manageable and effective in practice.

APP: the basic approach

The APP approach is straightforward. At regular intervals, which are planned to fit in with school assessment policy, teachers review pupils' work using APP guidelines to build a profile of their attainment. The information gained from the process allows teachers to:

  • analyse by AF the relative strengths and weaknesses of each pupil (pupils at levels 3–8)
  • assign each pupil an overall National Curriculum level for reading and for writing
  • use this information to set curricular targets to strengthen pupils' learning and inform their own future teaching by making links to the relevant objectives from the renewed Framework.

Standards grids

These have been revised to incorporate the full range of assessment focuses for reading, and extended to include new assessment criteria for levels 1 to 8.

APP in English at Key Stage 3: Speaking and listening Standards Files

APP in English at Key Stage 3: Reading Standards Files

APP in English at Key Stage 3: Writing Standards Files

Assessing pupils' progress in English at Key Stage 3: Teachers' handbook sets out the background and rationale for APP and is a necessary starting point if you are planning to implement APP across the department. 

The Assessment guidelines document provides blank assessment grids to be filled in by teacher.

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