Using Observations

What are Observations?

We know how important it is for our schools and MATs to be able to standardise teaching standards across the workforce. To enable you to do this, our Observations feature gives you the ability to record observations and analyse the outcomes in order to evaluate the quality of teaching.

Please note that Observations are included in our Perform packages. All other Arbor packages won’t have this feature by default. Want to upgrade or find out what package you’re on? Just get in contact with your Account Manager.

There are specific permissions that determine whether staff members can view, set up or analyse observations. Take a look at the PDF at the bottom of the page to see what permissions each Arbor-managed Business Role has by default.


There are specific permissions that determine whether staff members can view, set up or analyse observations. Top Tip: It isn't possible for managers to only be able to record observations about certain staff members.

  • View Setup - See the observation types and templates, and how the area is configured.
  • Administer Setup - Set up Observation types and templates.
  • Record My Observation - Log an observation for myself, either as the observer or person being observed.
  • Record Any Observation - Log an observation for any staff.
  • View My Observations - See observations done for myself, or that I have done.
  • View Any Observations - See all observations.

If you don't have permission, you'll need to ask your admin team to give you permission using these instructions.


What can we do with Observations?

What can I set up?

To see how to set up Observation Types and Templates, click here.

You can create forms for a variety of different types of observations, with the freedom to define your own observation types and Grade Sets.

You can then add a custom Template including overarching themes and strands within them.

What can I record?

To see how to record observations, click here.

Arbor's Observations feature lets you record observation outcomes for a variety of different types of observations you have set up. When recording an observation, select an observation form and compete it for an individual member of staff.



You can then save the observation to submit it later, or submit the observation straight away to be viewed by other members of staff (dependent on your and their permissions).



What can I analyse?

To see how to analyse Observations, including how averages are calculated, click here.

You can analyse observations you have recorded, observations about you and all observations in the school. 

To help you analyse the overall performance of your staff members, we've included both table and chart views.


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