In a traditional classroom environment, students can usually speak with an instructor or their peers directly if they have questions regarding feedback from an assignment. But because these in-person interactions aren’t possible in distance learning courses, providing quality feedback makes a huge difference in student development and learning outcomes. Whether you’re an educator or a student, here are four ways to maximize the impact of your feedback online.
Make The Feedback More Interactive
A recent survey found that students want more interaction with their instructors and peers in online courses, so why not use feedback as a form of engagement? Some educators have capitalized on this idea by using videos and podcasts to deliver feedback. By letting students see their face and hear their voice, these instructors have made these conversations feel more personal. Not only do podcasts and videos allow instructors to say more than they could write in the margins of papers, but they also give students a better understanding of what the instructor means with their comments. Making peer review sessions part of the learning process is another great way to enable engagement. These exercises create a sense of community in online classes and also provide an opportunity for students to reinforce comprehension.
Opt For Questions Over Statements
When giving feedback, try and ask questions instead of saying, or writing, general statements. Questions are more powerful and typically elicit a stronger response from the reader. For example, a comment like “This intro doesn’t hook the reader and needs revision” might be true, but a student would undoubtedly get more out of an instructor saying, “What point are you trying to illustrate here? Can you think of an anecdote or fact that would draw the reader in more?” This type of feedback encourages self-reflection, but doesn’t give students the answer. Asking questions also makes the learner examine things from a different perspective and doesn’t come across as confrontational.
Point Out The Good And The Bad
This point speaks more to students who aren’t as accustomed to editing or other forms
of peer review, but feedback can — and should — be positive and negative. If all you do is criticize someone else’s work, they’ll likely tune you out over time and won’t be as receptive to your constructive comments. By including both things you like about their paper or presentation and things they can improve on, most students will be more open to the feedback.
Connect The Feedback To Specific Examples
Most teachers probably do this, but students might not realize the importance of connecting feedback to specific examples. If you think someone needs to keep their tone more consistent, improve their eye contact, or use more research to back up their argument, point to specific examples in the video or text to illustrate your point. Many students will more than likely deflect overarching criticism if they can’t explicitly see or determine what the reviewer is alluding to.
Instructors can leave personalized, time-stamped feedback through Bongo’s video-based platform, while peer review activities are available in both Virtual Classroom and Video Assignments. To learn more about how Bongo facilitates feedback and improves online learning outcomes, visit Bongo’s website.
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