What is it?
Many students are often under the impression that peer-to-peer feedback is not as valuable as feedback from their lecturer or seminar tutor. However, this isn’t necessarily the case. Peer-to-peer feedback can prove to be very helpful especially with respect to group assessments and presentations. Although feedback from lecturers and seminar tutors is very important, peer-to-peer feedback can offer students a different and most importantly alternative perspective on their work in an informal environment. It also provides an opportunity for them to engage with the assessment process and make them more aware of the level of quality required. This awareness when looking at others’ work can then be transposed to their own. It is important however for lecturers to spend a little bit of time to ‘train’ students on how to give each other constructive feedback so that it can benefit both the giver and receiver.
In many departments across the University, peer-to-peer feedback is used in connection with staff feedback in dissertation and tutor groups, as well as action learning groups.
How can students make the most of it?
Students should be aware of the value of peer-to-peer feedback and not dismiss it straightaway since it can offer them an alternative and different perspective on their work. As a result, they should be encouraged to actively seek feedback from their peers and engage with any peer-to-peer feedback activities offered within the course. If students don’t know how to provide feedback to their peers, they should ask the lecturer who can go through the basic principles.