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Making the most of Feedback

 

Throughout your course you will receive feedback in a variety of forms and from different sources – all play a vital role in your learning process. Often this will be oral, as when a tutor comments on your contribution in class or when you meet with your personal tutor to review your progress after the January examinations. Sometimes it will be peer feedback, as when fellow students respond constructively to something you say or do. Much of the feedback you receive will also be written – this includes marks and comments on language work, on group presentations, practice essays or essay plans, and on coursework essays.

Our feedback to you will highlight strengths and weaknesses in your work, and point you in the right direction which will help you improve your learning process and performance. It should help you to understand the mark which was awarded, and should then feed forward into future learning. Do give close attention to all feedback and ask your class tutor or Personal Tutor if you need to discuss it.

 

What is feedback?

 

  • Feedback identifies strengths and weaknesses in your work and gives advice on ways in which you can improve your grade in future work.
  • Feedback is developmental and as such forms a fundamental part of the learning process
  • Feedback can be both oral and written, and whatever form it takes, you should expect it to be clear, constructive, and delivered in a timely manner.

 

When will I get feedback?

 

The following are examples of feedback that you’ll get in the course of a semester:

  • Individual written feedback on language work and coursework essays
  • General feedback on common mistakes in a particular exercise (eg. language work, a practice essay)
  • Feedback (oral or written) on individual and group presentations
  • Responses from tutors to your contributions during seminars and language classes (both written and oral)
  • Personalised feedback sessions with your tutors
  • Feedback on your performance in end-of-semester examinations from your Personal Tutor

 

How can I make the most of feedback?

 

  • Collect marked work and essay feedback sheets
  • Don’t just focus on the mark, particularly if this was lower than you were hoping for
  • Read the comments carefully – note what you did well and what needs to be improved, and try to apply this in the next piece of work you are submitting
  • Don’t get defensive about critical elements in feedback; learning to accept criticism is an important part of your academic development
  • If you are unclear about what you need to do to improve your work, contact the tutor directly to make an appointment to discuss your work, or speak to your Personal Tutor
  • Don’t just wait passively for feedback, ask for it!

 

You’ll find very good information about Feedback on the Learning Development Service webpage: http://www.qub.ac.uk/directorates/sgc/learning/feedback/