Guidance for mentors: supporting students with interpreting their profiles:
EMPOWER (students need to own their own profiles and strategies)
- start with: “What do you think about your profile?”
- “How well do you agree with it?”
- listen actively; let the student lead as much as possible
- ask open questions to be helpful – ‘How could you/we follow this up?’ ‘What do you want to focus on first?’
- start with the strengths
- strong dimensions can be used to build the others
- use your judgement to match the level of challenge to each student’s level of confidence/need for support
- use positive language: ‘areas for development’, not weaknesses – ‘opportunities’, not threats
- ask students to remember examples from their experience to appreciate how their profile reflects themselves as learners
- point out the links between the seven dimensions – how they interconnect and support each other
- ELLI profiles are about whole people and whole lives: what we think and feel and do in our learning, for life.
Interpreting the ELLI profile: guidelines for mentors.
The ELLI profile is primarily a self‐assessment method. That means for it to be effective in mobilising change and more effective learning, the student / respondent needs to use the wheel as a focus of self‐reflection, actively engaging Reflective Learning. The ELLI data is an objective measure of self‐perception. It does NOT measure either aptitude or learning potential, and should not be used in this way. For example, an ELLI report may reveal a student who perceives herself to be isolated, low in confidence, stuck and confused about her direction. While all of this has a concrete bearing on her learning, it does NOT (and cannot) reveal her to be lazy or low in intelligence. One may say instead that it reveals our ‘sticking points’, not our limitations.
ELLI is based on the principle that, once understood, we can ALL tap into these Seven Dimensions of Learning, and make them work for us. That said, when working with students and their profiles it can be useful to seek meaning from the completed ELLI profile, even if such insights are not shared directly with the student. It is never wise to impose such an interpretation, but it may help when discussing the profile with the student – if only to direct the student’s attention to certain notable elements. It can also be useful to view and interpret the dynamics of a class, the teaching staff, or even the entire school.
Interpreting ‘High’ and ‘Low’ scores
It is easy to assume that a ‘high’ score is ‘good’, and a ‘low’ score is bad. In fact, it isn’t so simple. High scores show a student who perceives himself to be strong in certain areas, which in all likelihood they are; however, some respondents may have an unrealistic view of themselves. Higher scores in one or two dimensions may be suggest an excess use of a disposition. Ultimately it is up to the respondent to determine this for themselves, rather than have such a view imposed by someone else. The same applies to ‘lower’ scores, which tend to reveal learners who may be self‐critical and self‐conscious rather than those who are ‘less able’. However, poor self‐image and lack of self‐awareness will inevitably impact on performance.