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Exit Slips

Exit slips are written student responses to questions teachers pose at the end of a class or lesson. These quick, informal assessments enable teachers to quickly assess students’ understanding of the material.

Key Information



When To Use This Strategy

After reading

Appropriate Group Size

With small groups
Whole class setting

What are exit slips?

Exit slips — also known as exit tickets — are brief, informal assessments or reflections that you can use at the end of a lesson or class period. Exit slips are designed to quickly gauge students’ understanding of the material covered in a lesson, identify any areas of confusion, and provide valuable feedback to you about the effectiveness of your instruction.

Why use exit slips?

  • They provide you with an informal measure of how well your students have understood a topic or lesson.
  • They help students reflect on what they have learned.
  • They allow students to express what or how they are thinking about new information.
  • They teach students to think critically.

How to use exit slips

At the end of your lesson, ask students to respond to a question or prompt. 

  1. Provide the prompt orally to your students or project it visually on an overhead or blackboard.
  2. Distribute 3 x 5 cards for students to write down their responses.
  3. Review the exit slips to determine how you may need to alter your instruction to better meet the needs of all your students.
  4. Collect the exit slips as a part of an assessment portfolio for each student.

Types of prompts

According to Fisher and Frey (2004), there are three categories of exit slips that you can use:

1. Prompts that document learning 

  • Example: Write one thing you learned today. 
  • Example: Discuss how today’s lesson could be used in the real world.

2. Prompts that emphasize the process of learning 

  • Example: I didn’t understand… 
  • Example: Write one question you have about today’s lesson.

3. Prompts to evaluate the effectiveness of instruction

  • Example: Did you enjoy working in small groups today?

Other exit prompts you might use

  • I would like to learn more about… 
  • Please explain more about… 
  • The thing that surprised me the most today was… 
  • I wish…

Watch a lesson (whole class)

This teacher uses a “Twitter-style” exit slip with her students — the kids are limited to 140-character responses. (Teaching Channel)

Watch a lesson (math, whole class)

In this video, the teacher asks her students to write down the most important thing they learned about decimals. (Education Service Center Region 13, Austin, TX)

Collect resources

Differentiate instruction

For second language learners, students of varying reading skill, and younger learners

  • Have a variety of exit slips and differentiate which students get which ones.
  • Allow students to work on their exit slips in pairs or small groups.
  • Allow students to verbally express the information.

Use across the content areas

  • Write one thing you learned today
  • Write one question you have about today’s lesson
  • Write three words with the long “o” sound
  • Why are the North and South Pole so cold?
  • Explain why Canada is not considered a melting pot
  • Draw a quick diagram that shows perspective
  • Of the 3 graphs we studied today which one did you find most useful? Why?
  • Name one positive and one negative thing that happened during group work today
  • Multiply 3 by 4

See the research that supports this strategy

Bafile, C. (2004). “Let It Slip!” Daily Exit Slips Help Teachers Know What Students Really Learned. (opens in a new window)

Fisher, D., and Frey, N. (2004). Improving Adolescent Literacy: Strategies at Work. New Jersey: Pearson Prentice Hall.

Children’s books to use with this strategy