Making & monitoring progress in BTEC

The following guest post was written by Tracy Parker. You can follow Tracy on Twitter @GymaholicTracy .

Keeping a track of progress for BTEC students can be an overwhelming task, especially as you finish one unit and move onto the next knowing full well that some students still haven’t met the criteria in the previous unit! It is extremely important that tracking progress is not just the responsibility of the teacher but the learners also take ownership of their own progress too!!

The first tracking should occur during the assignment and our students have found that a simple tick list that includes the unit content is invaluable when used alongside the assignment brief. See example below.

Personal Learning check

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For P7, you must be able to describe each of the 3 energy and relate the energy systems to their use in different sport and exercise activities.


For M4, you must examine each energy system and explain its use in a variety of sport and exercise activities.


D2 builds on M4, and requires you to analyse three different energy systems and their use in a wide variety of sport and exercise activities.


Solo taxonomy is another resource used to monitor progress during a lesson and provides students with a clear focus on the expectations.


What it SOLO Taxonomy?

SOLO is the Structured Observation of Learning Outcomes. It is useful as it scaffolds and personalises learning, it also encourages higher order thinking skills and can be used as a tool for monitoring progress during any lesson or subject. It can be used to structure feedback, as a framework for meeting BTEC criteria or to develop a deeper level of understanding to stretch and challenge learners and push them to meet  distinction criteria.


The following is useful word mat that learners can use to assist them with structuring their sentences to further any evaluation or analysis of a topic.



Below is an example of how I have used the BTEC criteria of a unit to differentiate the learning outcomes and use SOLO Taxonomy as a method for learners to monitor their own progress. I ask students to judge where they are in their learning at various stages in the lesson and add a time and initial to track this. The colours reflect the traffic light system and all students are encouraged to get to the green by the end of a lesson. This has motivated students to aim higher and work hard to get there.





A progress chart is another method for monitoring learning & progress at various stages during a lesson. This can be linked in with the SOLO taxonomy sheet and helps learners establish if they have made progress and if not, this is the perfect time for the teacher to explain problem areas further.

Learning Progression Mat



The learning progression map is a simple but effective way of condensing paper, booklets or worksheets into a simple map of charting learning progress on one page. It can be developed, tweaked and shared to improve its quality, application and ultimate impact on student progress/achievement. Again, this is used in conjunction with SOLO Taxonomy or the Progress Chart for learners to monitor their own progress. It can allow for greater independence of learning and does include all the criteria for a specific BTEC assignment and includes a variety of activities that excite the learner.



The aim of this grid is to promote learning and raise student achievement over time. It is also directly related to the criteria of a specific unit and can be used alongside SOLO Taxonomy so that students can work at their own pace and track their progress over time by ticking off completed tasks.


For students to independently track their progress on unit completion and calculate their qualification grade and UCAS points, the following tracker is useful.



You can download a copy of each of the resources mentioned in the post using this link. Your comments on the post would be most welcome!




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