Examining Understanding and Use of Feedback
Rhian Worth Tutor
College of Arts and Humanities
Carole Butler, Wendy Ore
Feedback is an important feature of assessment, and its importance is well recognised in the literature. For example, Hattie and Timperley (2007) stated that “feedback is one of the most powerful influences on learning and achievement” (p.81). Feedback can be used not only to explain performance on the current assessment but also to help further develop future work. Therefore, it is important that good quality feedback is provided by academic staff but also that students engage with and make use of feedback. However there are conflicting views on engagement with and the use of feedback. It has been regularly reported in the literature that students often do not read feedback (see Wilson, 2014) or do not act on it (see Brown & Glover, 2006). However, research with students have challenged this view. For example, Doan (2013) found that the vast majority of students read and used the feedback provided to them (see also Mulliner & Tucker, 2015). This suggests that there may be a difference between the perceptions of students and academic staff in relation to feedback in several areas (Carless, 2006). As much of the previous research has explored these topics with students aged 18-21, this study will add to this field of knowledge by focusing on mature learners. Therefore, the key questions here relate to how do academic staff and students view and use feedback?
The current study explored the views of students and academic staff within DACE (Department of Adults Continuing Education) on feedback. Participants were students and academic staff at DACE who were studying or teaching on the BA in Humanities degree. Using questionnaires the views of students and academic staff in relation to feedback, the engagement and the use of feedback was explored. Questionnaires were administered online. Following this two focus groups were conducted – one with students and one with academic staff. The focus groups discussed topics in the questionnaire in more detail.
Findings from the research will be used to shape future discussion in relation to feedback and will form the basis of future research related to improving the effectiveness and use of feedback. The poster will discuss preliminary data from the questionnaires and focus groups, and discuss the potential implications of the findings.
The aim and objective of the proposed poster is to discuss findings of the study and engage in a wider discussion with colleagues on the use and engagement of feedback.
The poster will discuss preliminary data from the questionnaires and focus groups, and discuss the potential implications of the findings. The aim and objective of the proposed poster is to discuss findings of the study and engage in a wider discussion with colleagues on the use and engagement of feedback. Through presenting the findings of the study as a poster we hope to engage with staff across the University to discuss and share good practice for feedback, potential improvements in feedback including engagement and use, and discuss ways forward for research in this area.
Assessment, Feedback, Methods, Questionnaires, Focus Group
The takeaway message will be that further discussion is needed in relation to engagement with and the use of feedback. Previous research has highlighted the important role of feedback, therefore further discussion here is key.