Peer assessment is the structured process of students providing feedback and critique of each other’s academic work. Peer assessment is valuable to both the student who gives and the student who receives the feedback. Both students develop critical thinking skills and practice iterative revision while encouraging them to take responsibility for their own learning.
How to Include Peer-Assessment in Your Course
Why are you including a peer assessment exercise in your course? Understanding where and how a peer assessment activity fits into your course is an important first step. Some studies indicate peer assessment improves academic performance when compared to no assessment or teacher assessment (Double, McGrane, and Hopfenbeck, 2020).
The key to a successful peer assessment exercise is to provide a detailed set of expectations. Giving your students a clear roadmap of how to assess each other’s work and examples of both excellent and poor contributions helps create a uniform set of expectations and standards for everyone. Students should understand how to apply a rubric, and it can be helpful to model how to provide constructive comments and balanced feedback. [Check out this Example Rubric]
Will the feedback in anonymous? If a student wishes to seek clarification about the feedback they received from their classmates, how should they go about this? Do they first approach you, the instructor, or do they go directly to their peers? How will disagreements be resolved? What consequences, if any, are in place for students who do not provide feedback to their peers?
McMaster Resources :
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Double, McGrane, & Hopfenbeck. (2020). The Impact of Peer Assessment on Academic Performance: A meta-analysis of control group studies. Education Physchology Review. Vol. 32, 481-509. https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s10648-019-09510-3
Falchikov, & Goldfinch. (2000). Student Peer Assessment in Higher Education: A Meta-Analysis Comparing Peer and Teacher Marks. Review of Educational Research, 70(3), 287-322. https://www.jstor.org/stable/1170785