INDEPENDENT STUDY & EARNED AUTONOMY
A graduated approach based on the principle of earned autonomy:
In Post-16 at IGS we take a graduated approach towards independent study based on the principle of earned autonomy. This means that students can earn the right to study independently and that the amount of freedom increases over the course of Year 12 and 13 as long as a student demonstrates that they have the independent skills to study effectively.
In additional to core, timetabled subject lessons (typically 33-44 lessons per cycle depending if a student is studying 3 or 4 subjects) students in Year 12 and 13 will also have the following sessions on their timetable up to a typical total of 46 timetabled periods:
Where?: These take place in F5 and F6, in the library and in the Armitage Hall study area and a register is taken in these lessons.
Study focus: These lessons are supported by Independent Learning Resources on Showbie which are managed by the Student Achievement Manager and students are expected to arrive at a Supervised Study period with work to do. They will be given work to do if required using the Independent Learning resources and guidance provided by subject areas.
Attendance/absence: Unexplained absence in Supervised Study is monitored and if a Supervised Study period is missed without a good reason, then a student will need to make this time up after school. Students who miss multiple Supervised Study periods may have additional Supervised Study periods added to their timetable and may be placed on a contract.
Timing of Supervised Study periods: Supervised study periods can be moved around the timetable (by agreement and group-size allowing), but they may not be removed unless by agreement with the Post-16 team. These periods form part of the official minimum number of periods that all students must have on their timetable across a two-week cycle in order to be classed as a ‘full time’ student.
Allocation of additional Supervised Study periods: All students will have a number of supervised study periods added to their timetable at the start of the year up to a total number of subject and study periods which will be the same for each full-time student (typically 46 periods over a two week cycle). In addition to this, if, based on tracking information at each data point, we are concerned that a student is not studying effectively, we may agree to increase the number of ‘Supervised Study’ periods on their timetable and this may form part of a study contract.
Elective Supervised Study: Students can also pro-actively elect to have additional Supervised Study periods on their timetable and as long as there are enough places we can add Supervised Study to a student’s timetable if requested.
Directed Study (year 13 only)
What? These are periods of independent ‘directed study time’ and form part of the formal timetable allocation). If a student has fewer Supervised Study periods they will have more Directed Study periods on their timetable adding up, with subject lessons, to a total of 46 periods over a two week cycle.
Registering: Directed Study is registered via a QR code which is monitored by the Attendance Officer. If students do not register in these sessions then the absence will be regarded as unauthorised and additional Supervised Study periods may be added to their timetable.
Where? During Directed Study year 13 students study in a range of designated Post-16 study areas (which include the Courtyard Café, the Library and the Armitage café, except during break and period 4). Free room timetables and other spaces are advertised and updated via the weekly bulletin.
Blank study periods
Students in years 12 and 13 will have a number of blank study periods on their timetable each week. During these times students can choose where they wish to study in school and if they are eligible for Home Study, and they have been granted Home Study, then they can choose to study at home at agreed times.
All Post-16 students remain in school for all timetabled periods and ‘free’ periods (a blank lesson on the timetable) until they are granted ‘Home Study’.
Year 12 and 13: When students are being assessed for eligibility for Home Study the following criteria will be used alongside any relevant personal circumstances:
- Learning Behaviour (tracking reports and ClassCharts)
- Independent Study / Homework (tracking reports and ClassCharts)
Students who have a significant ‘academic distance to travel’ in more than one area at a given tracking point may not be granted Home Study.
Permission for ‘Home Study’ may be withdrawn and students will be required to study in school should evidence suggest that this maybe more helpful for your study.
Students can ask for Supervised or Directed Study periods to be reallocated on their timetable in order to free up blocks of time for Home Study.
Year 13: Once ‘Home Study’ is granted students are not required to be in school during non-timetabled periods but for safeguarding purposes, so we know who is in the building at all times, students are required to sign in and out every time they leave and enter the building.
In Year 13 ‘Home Study’ will not be granted during the first Half Term until Next Steps requirements are fulfilled e.g. UCAS application completed / CV submitted. The same academic eligibility criteria as for Year 12 will also be applied.
Students in the Apply+ cohort will be granted Home Study from the start of Year 13 to support early entry process and independent revision for entry tests.
Year 12: In year 12 no student will be granted ‘Home Study’ during the first term. From January in Year 12 students who have been approved for Home Study can elect an agreed number of afternoon periods a cycle for ‘Home Study’.
Typically students are granted study leave for mock exams in year 12 and in year 13, however if there are concerns about a student’s ability to study independently they may be required or strongly encouraged to study in school and this may form part of their study contract.
Students taking subjects which have a significant amount of coursework may be required to attend lessons or to complete coursework in school during study leave.
Each subject area will set homework for students which will introduce/consolidate taught content. The amount of homework will vary but should balance out across subjects over time although there will also be some variation as a result of individual aptitude for a given subject. Homework is typically set on ClassCharts and if deadlines are missed students are expected to complete the work set and may need to attend an after-school study period.