Showing; Not Telling: Modelling Student Feedback to Improve Attainment and Satisfaction

McGuire, W. (2018) Showing; Not Telling: Modelling Student Feedback to Improve Attainment and Satisfaction. Enhancing Student Learning Through Innovative Scholarship, Bristol, UK, 11-12 Jul 2018.

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Aims: This paper reports on the results of a project with a full cohort of MEd students titled, Showing; not telling: modelling student feedback to improve attainment and satisfaction. It represents an upscaling of the paper submitted at last year’s conference. One of the key messages to emerge was the need for support (both student and staff) with assessment literacy as it cannot be assumed that staff can shift from an instructional model of feedback to a descriptive model unsupported. The reverse is equally the case. Methods: The key to this transition is support and its composition is the focus of this study in which a pilot group of staff (3) and students (3) was established to determine the nature of the support required by markers by working through three sample scripts in order to create guidelines on how to ‘model’ feedback for students. Main findings: The central issue is what constitutes ‘helpful’ feedback. 1 Strengths had to be identified at the outset 2 Development needs, too, had to be made clear 3 Modelling feedback for students was found to be ‘difficult’, as it signified a shift from an instructional to a descriptive feedback model, which meant that markers had to function as both assessors and teachers simultaneously by providing students with examples of improvement rather than instructions 4 The tone of the feedback was felt to be important as well as the mood established by assessor language choices in inculcating motivation in students. Conclusions: If this model of feedback were to be adopted, one of the key implications would be for staff CPD, so the next stage in the evolution of this project will be a funded initiative looking at the content of such CPD and its mode of delivery to support academic staff while avoiding the issue of overburdening an already challenged sector. A second implication would be for deeper student engagement with activating feedback in future assignments and some suggestions are made to support this endeavour.

Item Type:Conference or Workshop Item
Keywords:Feedback, modelling, attainment, satisfaction, mood and tone.
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:McGuire, Mr William
Authors: McGuire, W.
College/School:College of Social Sciences > School of Education > Pedagogy Policy and Practice
College of Social Sciences > School of Education > Pedagogy, Praxis & Faith
Research Group:Pedagogy Praxis and Faith

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