Peer-in at feedback: provide students with the skills to successfully give and receive feedback from each other (Interactive Session)

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Stephanie Glube and Trish Igoe (Confident Futures)

Students giving constructive feedback to each other enhances overall learning and helps to prepare them for their professional future (Nicol and MacFarlane-Dick, 2007). Academic staff have indicated that students can struggle with giving each other constructive feedback. As a result, Confident Futures consultants were approached to develop a tailored version of the existing “Making Feedback Work for You” workshop focusing specifically on peer to peer feedback as opposed to lecturer to student feedback.

Nicol and MacFarlane-Dick (2007) highlight the need for a shift of responsibility of formative assessment and feedback from academics to students. They claim that this shift in responsibility, 1) empowers students and helps them develop lifelong skills, 2) helps remove the potential confusion of understanding the feedback given by teachers (usually written feedback), 3) helps build motivation and confidence around assessment and 4) alleviates the increasing workload placed on university staff in today’s climate.

With this research in mind and the requests from academics the existing ‘Making Feedback Work for You’ has been modified to focus on peer feedback to help students:

  1. Understand the role of feedback in learning; utilise this to build motivation and resilience.
  2. Build a self-motivated and proactive attitude to feedback: learn and use a ‘thinking tool’ to help welcome feedback and to capitalise upon it.
  3. Develop strategies on how to constructively give and seek feedback in order to help improve each other’s work and develop personal potential.

This session will focus on the third point, whilst making reference to the Conscious-Competence model (Howell, 1982) and to Mindset theory (Dweck, 1999).

In this session you will not only be introduced to peer feedback strategies you will also get a chance to practice these strategies with your peers.

Theoretical Underpinning

Dweck, C. (1999). Self-theories: Their Role in Motivation, Personality, and Development (Essays in Social Psychology). East Sussex: Taylor and Francis Group.

Howell, W.S. (1982). The empathic communicator. University of Minnesota: Wadsworth Publishing Company.

Nicol, D. & MacFarlane-Dick, D. (2005) Formative assessment and self-regulated learning: a model and seven principles of good feedback practice. Studies in Higher Education. 31 (2), pp199-218.