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May 25, 2018

Episode 21 of The Teaching Space Podcast explores the use of exit tickets for assessment and evaluation with learners. 

Podcast Episode 21 Transcript

Welcome to The Teaching Space podcast, coming to you from Guernsey in the Channel Islands.

Hello, it's Martine here. Welcome to Episode 21 of The Teaching Space podcast. It's great to have you with me. Today's episode is called Excellent Exit Tickets For Assessment And Evaluation.

What's an Exit Ticket?

So what's an exit ticket? Well, typically it's a short assessment or evaluation activity that your students would complete before they leave the classroom. Often it will be a slip of paper which might be pre-printed to look like a ticket, or could be just a scrap of paper from your shredding bin.

It could be an online exit ticket. You might use a Google Form or a Padlet or something similar.

Whatever you use, the idea behind an exit ticket is that your student will complete it before they leave the session, and if they don't complete it they don't leave the session. That's the idea, at any rate.

I've found that exit tickets tend to be used with young children, but I only teach adults and have had some success using them. So perhaps rethink how you're using exit tickets. They can definitely work with older learners.

Some examples of exit tickets can be found on

Exit Tickets for Formative Assessment

There are lots of ways to use an exit ticket.

Personally, I find they're most useful for formative assessment. Here are some ideas on how you could use an exit ticket for formative assessment.

To Answer a Question

You might ask one important question from the session. So your learner has to write the answer to the question on the ticket before they leave. That's a really good way to gauge whether the main point in the session has been understood.

To Summarize The Session

Alternatively, you could ask your learners on the exit ticket to summarize the key points of the session. If you do this, it might be a good idea to put some bullet points, maybe three bullet points on there, so they know the sort of level of detail you're asking them to go into.

Big Learning Moment and What They Need Help With 

One of my favourites is to ask learners to explain one key takeaway from the session, their big learning moment that they had, and one thing that they're still a little bit hazy about and need a little bit more help with.

I should add that when you do this it's really essential that you go through the exit tickets when everyone's left and make a big list of anything that learners are still hazy about, and then you follow that up. Otherwise there's not much point in doing the exit ticket exercise.

Exit Tickets as Reflective Tools

If you're encouraging a culture of reflection in your class, then why not use an exit ticket as a reflective tool. You can prompt your learners in the direction you'd like them to reflect. This works really well.

Don't forget that you can incorporate stretch and challenge into the use of exit tickets, because not everybody needs to have the same ticket. If you've got some learners who have achieved mastery in the session and need to be stretched a little further, then give them a more challenging exit ticket, there are definite opportunities for differentiation within the use of exit tickets.

Exit Tickets for Evaluation

They're not just an assessment tool though. You can use exit tickets for evaluation; you can use them to check the quality of your session.

I find that pre-printed exit tickets work best for this purpose. You might have a "What went well? Even better if ..." type exit ticket. So you might have WWW and then EBI on a different line, and ask for some feedback in that way. If you're dealing with young learners, then maybe a smiley face type scale could be an alternative.

Using Prompts

While it's perfectly fine to just use a blank sheet of paper for your exit ticket, I've found that prompts tend to give you a better quality of response.

So the sort of prompts you could include on your exit ticket might be: "Write one thing you learned today." Or, "Write one thing you'd like more help to understand."

These prompts also work really well in the first person. So you might have something like: "Today I enjoyed ..." "Today I found it confusing when ..." Or, "Please explain more about ..."

How Do You Make an Exit Ticket?

Let's talk about how you make an exit ticket. I think there are three options here.

1. Verbal Exit Ticket

You could take the path of least resistance and simply have a verbal exit ticket. This would work best with younger learners, I think. So you would stand at the door to your classroom, you would issue a question to the group, give them some thinking time, get them to line up at the door, and answer the question on the way out. So that would be your simple option for a verbal exit ticket.

2. Paper Exit Ticket

The mid-level option would be a paper exit ticket. It could be a scrap of plain paper, you put a question on the board and they write the answer. Or you could take the next step up and have a pre-printed ticket with prompts, and that would be what I recommend in the first instance, because I think it's best for the learner.

These pre-printed exit tickets could be created in Microsoft Word or Google Docs. What I've found is the easiest thing to do is just to create a table, a two column table, questions on the left and space for an answer on the right. That works very nicely.

3. Online Exit Ticket

If you want to take a tech approach, then I highly recommend using Google Forms. But this is really only going to work if your learners are on a computer at the end of the session. You know, if they've put their technology away or they're not allowed to use mobile phones for whatever reason, this isn't going to be the best format.

Certainly for my adult learners I've found that Google Forms work really well. If you create a QR code with the link to the Google Form that makes things even easier as well.

I like to get my learners using their devices, scanning the code, completing the exit ticket, and then going.

If it's appropriate, with a Google Form you can have the responses in a Google sheet on your board as people leave. It might not be appropriate to share what everyone else is putting in the exit ticket, but you never know, it might be.

My Preference

Now, I have a confession to make, even though I am a very tech-orientated teacher, I am a Google certified trainer so I love Google tools, the best way to do exit tickets, in my opinion, is the pre-printed slip. It's nice and easy. You've made it once, you can print it as many times as you like. It's very quick for you to see the responses. I really like a pre-printed exit ticket.

Template Exit Ticket

With this in mind, I have a little gift for you. I have a template exit ticket that you're very welcome to use in your classroom.

Here will find links to two options for the exit ticket, I've got a PDF version, which you can simply print out, I've also got a Google Doc template version for you. So when you click on the link what's going to happen is, Google will ask you if you want to make a copy of my template document, and you will answer, "Yes", and it will save in your Google Drive. Pop over to to grab these.

So you've got a PDF option and you've got a Google Doc template option. You don't have to opt-in to any newsletter or anything like that to get these freebies. They are just there for you to use.

Wrap Up

I'd love to know your thoughts on exit tickets and whether you have a chance to try out my templates that I've provided. The best way to chat about this sort of thing is to join The Teaching Space Staff Room, that's our closed Facebook group, I'll pop a link in the show notes for you.

Right, that's all from me today. I hope you enjoyed the episode and I hope you'll join me next time.