Researched and piloted in Irish schools, SALF provides a practical approach to AfL – Assessment for Learning. It clearly outlines the steps involved in creating, compiling and completing Self Assessment and Learning Folders with Junior, Middle and Senior Classes in the Primary school. It includes strategies for supporting the involvement of parents/guardians/carers and others in the process. SALF provides a framework for children to present evidence of their work and their assessment of that work across all curricular areas and beyond.

This new SALF Guidelines for Teachers is a fully updated and revised edition of the original widely used first edition published in 2011, which was researched and written by Joan Keating N.T. B.Ed & Siobhán Cahillane-McGovern Ph.D,

Aideen O’ Mahoney

Rose Marie Corry

“Over the course of the year, the folder provides evidence of children’s achievements in all curricular areas and importantly, confirmation of the decisions they have made to identify this work as an achievement. In that sense the SALF folders are evidence of children’s learning as well as providing a source of information that can be used by them to make assessment decisions about that learning.”


Samples of actual children’s SALF folders can be viewed by clicking on the ‘Samples’ disc below.

There are three types of folders used in SALF: The Junior SALF Folder (recommended for Infants to 1st class), 20-Pocket folders (2nd to 4th class) and 40-Pocket Folders (5th & 6th class).

By engaging in the self  assessment practices that are supported by the SALF process, it is possible for all staff to have both the language to discuss assessment together with the practical skills to ensure that children become fully engaged participants in their own learning.SALF provides concrete evidence of individual and class achievements. It is invaluable in ensuring that School Self Evaluation targets are underpinned by the reality of attainments of pupils and the challenges that they experience.The embedding of the reflective skills encouraged by SALF definitely raises a child’s ability to engage actively in their own learning and empowers teachers to tailor their teaching more effectively to best support the reality of the child’s experience. – Primary School Principal

In secondary school students have a self assessment piece that they fill in each week in their journals. Children who have experience with the language of self assessment find it easier.A large number of secondary school projects include this reflection piece. In fact the new Junior Cert English last year required the students to reflect on and compare two pieces of their work during the year. This type of questioning is very much in line with the questions we use with SALF. Secondary schools are embracing Assessment For Learning more and more although the points race is still very much part of the course. The thinking involved in assembling SALF folders is very much the thinking that students need in their reflective pieces in the new Junior Cert. – Secondary School Principal


The photo gallery below gives a taste of what SALF brings to a school.

SALF Revised was launched in Clare Education Centre in 2018. Take a look at the photos from the launch night.

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