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Creative ways to use technology to give student feedback

I happened upon The Chronicle of Higher Education’s Advice Guide How to Give Your Students Feedback with Technology. The guide begins with the authors’ definition of feedback—“the various types of guidance and direction that instructors provide: corrections or positive reinforcement after an exam, explanations on written work, details and notes included as part of rubric grading”—and goes on to address qualities of good feedback, provide concrete examples of the application of specific tools, offer tips on getting started, and raise awareness of common pitfalls and solutions.

This guide is worth a read. The concrete examples offer inspiration for application. For example: audio feedback lends itself well to feedback that requires nuance, such as in a communications course where tone is important. The authors also offer time-saver tips, such as using a rubric tool whereby you can click on criteria to assign scores, which are then automatically tallied.

While the authors are careful to point out that tech tools are not a panacea for solving all of one’s teaching and learning woes, thoughtful implementation of tools appropriate for a given context have the potential to bolster students’ learning experience.

If you’re an instructor at McGill University and would like to try out technology tools for providing students with feedback, many described in The Chronicle’s Guide are available in myCourses. Register for myCourses Essentials to learn how to use the tools or request a consultation with Teaching and Learning Services.

Senior Academic Associate at McGill's Teaching and Learning Services.; former Senior Faculty Lecturer at the McGill Writing Centre; area of specialization: Second Language Education; loves teaching and learning; will work for chocolate (Photo credit: Owen Egan)

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