Exit ticket ideas

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Exit Tickets

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Exit tickets are a powerful strategy that can support teachers in gaining formative feedback. They provide a simple, practical, easy, and adaptable way to obtain actionable feedback for teachers from their students. We've compiled a list of exit ticket ideas and examples you can use in your classroom.


What are exit tickets?

Exit Tickets are an integral part of responsive teaching that are used to inform teacher practice. When using Exit Tickets, typically, an exit ticket task is created by a teacher, they are completed by students before leaving the classroom, the data are collected, aggregated, and analysed. Critically, though, the power in Exit Tickets is about what happens next, how the insights gain inform next steps in the classroom.

Exit Tickets are not intended to be summative in nature. Nor are they a high-stakes test or assessment. Rather, they are a short informal assessments, surveys, or tasks, usually 2 – 5 questions in length that students complete before they leave the classroom. They usually take no longer than a few minutes. Typically, they are used by teachers as a form of formative assessment to check the level of student understanding of the lessons that has just been completed. They can be used to collect feedback from students about many aspects of their learning experiences. Exit Tickets can be used by teachers as a pre-assessment to learn about their classes’ knowledge of an upcoming topic. Teachers can also use Entrance Tickets at the start of class for a similar purpose. 

The purpose of using an Exit Ticket is to collect feedback from students. The real power of an Exit Ticket though is to equip a teacher with timely insights about their class so they can adjust their teaching & learning. Exit Tickets also allow a teacher to understand the impact of their teaching and gain insights into their students and their experience in the classroom. 

As Hattie, Fisher and Frey (2017) have said “Gathering real-time data about good decisions about where students are in the learning process is critical to making decisions about the next lessons or next teaching move”. 

Exit Tickets serve are perfectly suited to providing this data.

What are the benefits of exit tickets?
  • They can be used quickly and easily check understanding of a topic, skill or concept being learnt.
  • The information gain from Exit Tickets can support planning subsequent lessons. For example, you might find that many of your students did not quite grasp a concept and then plan to review the material again.
  • They can encourage students to reflect on their learning which can help to build their meta-cognitive skills.
  • They are a good way to recording evidence of student development over time.
  • They can reduce anxiety about answering questions in class and remove the fear of failure.
  • They ensure feedback is provide by all students.
  • If constructed well, they require student to apply their knowledge which can help to deepen learning.
  • They can challenge students to synthesize knowledge and express their understanding in their own words.
What makes a good exit ticket?

Given that a primary purpose of Exit Tickets is to collect feedback for teachers to inform their practice it stands to reason that the data they yield will only be comparable to the effort spent designing them. This means that it is important to design Exit Tickets that will yield useful, actionable information about your class. It is also critical to ensure that they are easily to understood by students and appropriately short (i.e. they should not take more than 2 – 5 minutes to complete).

Some recommendations for Exit Tickets include:

  • Exit Tickets should be low stakes (i.e. not graded). 
  • Two to five questions are fine, students should be able to complete finish in a few minutes. 
  • Embed Exit Tickets through your teaching units and not just the end of a unit or semester.
  • Exit Tickets can enable you to really engage your students while still assessing their understanding to your lesson so be creative in the types of questions you ask students.
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Exit ticket ideas and examples

Confidence checks

Reflecting on learning is a powerful tool in aiding comprehension and memory. Using exit tickets to prompt student reflection (via tools like Loop) is an easy and timely way to get students to reprocess information. These ideas focus on encouraging students to think more deeply about lesson content.

  • How well do you feel you understood todays lesson?
  • What is one thing you'd like me to explain more clearly?
  • What was the most important thing you learned in today's class? Why is it important?
  • What is the most difficult question you have about what you learned today?
  • How could the knowledge you learned today be used in the real world
  • What's one thing you want to practice again?
  • What are you struggling to understand at the moment?

Learning reflection

Reflecting on learning is a powerful tool in aiding comprehension and memory. Using exit tickets to prompt student reflection (via tools like Loop) is an easy and timely way to get students to reprocess information. These ideas focus on encouraging students to think more deeply about lesson content.

  • What part of the lesson surprised you?
  • Which part of today’s lesson was most interesting?
  • My favourite part of today’s lesson was…
  • What is the most important thing you learned today and why?
  • I used to think…but now I know…
  • Two facts I learned about the topic…
  • The top 3 ideas I remember from today’s lesson…
  • What is something you weren't sure about at the start of the lesson but understand now?
  • Imagine a classmate is absent from class today. How would you explain the lesson to him/her in 25 words or less?
  • If you were creating a quiz about today’s lesson, what are 2 questions you’d include?

Classroom environment

Creating a positive classroom climate helps students feel safe, respected supported and welcomed. These exit ticket questions are designed to identify opportunities for changing the classroom environment for the better.

  • What’s one change we could make to the way we learn in this class?
  • What’s one thing you’d like me to START doing in class?
  • What’s one thing you’d like me to STOP doing in class?
  • What’s one thing you’d like me to CONTINUE doing in class?
  • Did you value the group activity today? Do you think the activity or task would have been better done alone?

Student wellbeing

Student wellbeing critical to learning. By understanding the factors affecting a students wellbeing, teachers can more quickly take action to support students.

  • What's one thing outside of school that you love doing?
  • Did you have enough sleep last night?
  • How do you feel about your workload right now?
  • What helps you to get in a good mood when you're feeling down?
  • What makes you feel good about your life?
  • What makes you feel anxious?
  • What makes you feel down?
  • Who do you turn to for support?

Remote learning

Remote learning has presented many unexpected changes for teachers and students alike. Understanding how these changes have impacted students can help mitigate learning challenges.

  • How easy is it to access online the resources you need for this subject?
  • How was the level of today's work?
  • In learning from home where do you need the most support right now?
  • What is your biggest challenge learning from home?
  • How do you spend your breaks when learning from home?

How to ask a good exit ticket question?

To get the most out of the exit ticket process, questions should:

  • Be short
  • Where possible be open ended.
  • Linked to the learning intentions (& success criteria) of the lesson.
  • Focus on skill(s) or concept(s) being taught.
  • Allow students to demonstrate understanding.
  • Challenge students to synthesise what they have learnt.
  • NOT be surface level questions (i.e. Factual).
  • NOT be yes/or no answer.
  • Prompt reflection.
  • Use clean specific language that is not vague or ambiguous.
  • Avoid passive and negative wording will enforce “I can’t” attitudes with no actionable way forward.

When starting to use Exit Tickets it is a good idea to use structured questions to support students in becoming familiar with the process. These can then be adjusted over time to be more open-ended in nature.

Exit Tickets can use a variety of question types, for example, some questions might involve a rating scale, another might be more open-ended asking students to write their specific concerns or ideas or reflection. Another might ask a student to respond to a specific questions or prompt. It is a good idea, therefore, to model the Exit Tickets to your class and show them how to complete the different types of questions that might be asked.

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