When learners provide constructive feedback on each other's work, they reflect on their own understanding, learn to give relevant suggestions, receive specific ways to improve, and engage in Metacognition. Peer feedback fosters Motivation to self-correct, builds learner agency, and supports retention in Long-term Memory. The purpose of peer feedback is to promote learning by both the peer reviewer and the recipient of the feedback. If mostly negative, the feedback can discourage effort and achievement. So, it is important to ensure the tools and protocols used promote feedback that is actionable, timely, focused, proactive, clear, and personalized to promote a growth mindset.
Peer review is a reciprocal process in which students learn from both providing and receiving feedback. Whether the learning environment is in person, hybrid, synchronous, or asynchronous, the use of peer feedback supports Metacognition, Motivation, learner agency, and fosters a Learner Mindset. Products can support the giving and receiving of peer feedback by including features such as custom reflection rubrics, feedback protocols, multiple reviews, request feedback tools, notifications that feedback was received, notifications that feedback was reviewed, and tagging for followup or additional review.
Instructors can create a culture of giving and receiving feedback that inspires learners to learn from each other. Setting clear expectations, modeling the process of giving specific feedback, and offering some shared language guidelines helps peers successfully give feedback in a constructive manner. Instructors can introduce peer feedback and critique groups as formative assessment, which also creates an additional level of learning as learners get more timely feedback. Narrowing down the scope of feedback and providing areas to focus on while giving feedback helps learners feel less overwhelmed and anxious about giving feedback and ensures a more productive process.
Online opportunities for peer feedback can be especially effective since learners can give feedback asynchronously and often anonymously. Developers can create interactive spaces for collaboration by providing highlighting and annotation tools to ask clarifying questions. These collaborative platforms can allow multiple peers to give feedback in a safe and regulated manner. Integrating tools like peer feedback protocols, rubrics, or checklists can provide additional guidance and support. Important to note, anonymity in online peer assessment can result in a more positive attitude, higher perceived learning, and more cognitive comments, but may lead to fewer affective comments and a lower perception of fairness.
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