Setting measurable goals with your students

4 mins read
Tara Walsh

Setting goals with your students at the beginning of a lesson, topic or unit of work is vital. Everyone works more effectively when they have goals in place. Establishing goals in the classroom helps set clear expectations around learning outcomes involved. They also communicate to students what they can expect to learn and understand in a particular timeframe.

Why the best goals are SMART goals

As the educator, you need to make sure the goals your students set for themselves are SMART. Otherwise, it can be tricky to track student learning progress or achievement. You can role model this process for your students to help them. You could share a learning goal for the year, or one about a hobby or skill you’re developing.

SMART goals are:

  • Specific: Define what you want to achieve with who, why, when, where, and what details.
  • Measurable: Articulate how you will know when a goal or progress is achieved.
  • Attainable: The best goals require stretch and focus to achieve but shouldn’t be out of reach.
  • Realistic: SMART goals should be relevant and meet a need.
  • Timely: A goal needs a realistic timeframe with a deadline in place.

Benefits of effective goal setting

Identify different student learning levels

Having students set goals for themselves can help you as the teacher. Use these goals to identify different learning levels and prepare differentiated learning activities and programs tailored specifically for your students.

Set clear expectations

Goal setting helps your students understand what’s expected of them for a particular task or topic and provides specific direction. It can be helpful to provide verbal and written information on expectations for your students, so they something to refer back to.

Keep students focused and engaged

SMART goals with measurable steps along the way help students keep track of their progress and stay focused during a topic or unit of work. Having smaller goals within a goal allow students to tick off and acknowledge the progress they’re making towards their larger goal. You can also support students through this progression by acknowledging their efforts.

Teaching Strategies Setting Goals

SMART goal ideas for teachers

ClickView’s interactive video feature can help you and your students set and work towards SMART goals. Add an interactive layer of questions or problems to any video, have your students complete them, and you’ll receive an analytic summary of their understanding on a topic.


5 tips for effective classroom goal setting

  1. Prepare in advance:
    Complete interactive video questions on a topic in advance and use the analytics to help set the goals for a specific lesson.
  2. Use analytics:
    Share ClickView interactive analytics with students electronically or via a 1:1 conversation to reflect on their progress towards goals.
  3. Grab attention:
    Play a small clip to hook students when introducing a new topic or learning area and preparing to set goals.
  4. Summarise progress:
    Students can use the annotation tool for interactive video to summarise their goals, progress and achievement.
  5. Access resources:
    You can use the suggested lesson plans and other ClickView educational resources to help your class set their goals.

4 Teacher tips for setting goals

  1. Goals help you focus on behaviours
    The process of setting goals and the way we think about them gives us insight into what we want and how we can go about achieving it. Goals can give us something to focus on, impacting positively on our motivation as we learn. Some examples may be learning to interpret Shakespeare’s plays or memorise a monologue, or learning coding basics and computational thinking.
  2. Make goals purposeful and meaningful
    The bigger our goals can be, the more they will help to bring us satisfaction when we achieve them. As an educator, you can encourage your students to think bigger and bolder with their goals, beyond the learning environment to their future aspirations. Interactive videos provide a valuable opportunity for formative assessment. Instant analytics help you as an educator target your teaching to support students with their goals. Use interactive videos to help students with goal setting.
  3. Set your goals with your strengths in mind
    Knowing and working with our strengths can help us to feel more confident and engaged. Work with your students, asking meaningful questions to help them identify their strengths, setting goals to extend these. As an educator, your goals personal development can also play to your strengths, building skills in areas of natural competence, as well as in new areas.
  4. Failure builds resilience
    It helps to normalise failure as part of the learning process. As you and your students face setbacks and obstacles, resilience and a growth mindset develops. What happens when we hit a roadblock is key. Take the time to help students overcome obstacles by brainstorming alternative pathways or ideas.

Achieve learning outcomes with effective teaching strategies

You could have full access to the ClickView library, including all supporting educational resources. Also included in your subscription is access to our training channel and webinars, to help you make the most of ClickView’s exciting features. We’re here to help you with effective SMART goal setting to achieve optimum student learning outcomes.