There’s No Time Like Summertime (To Refine Peer Review)!

This post is for anyone wishing to try peer review or for those who promise ourselves that we’ll take some time “next time” to perfect our peer-review processes. The effort to improve our implementation of peer review is well worth it. Research shows that student learning is not only improved through receiving thoughtful feedback but by learning to articulate thoughtful feedback.

In this Faculty Focus post, Christina Moore offers tips on how to use peer review to teach skills in providing attentive feedback, thereby also cultivating critical thinking in your discipline. A key suggestion is to have student-authors write a memo for their peer reviewer consisting of 1) a context paragraph that lets their reader know where the author is in their writing process and 2) a list of questions about specific points in their draft. This process not only helps reviewers but cultivates metacognitive skills in the authors.

For more detailed tips on how to improve your peer review sessions—including how to set up peer review, identify and teach requisite skills, and establish clear roles for students—check out our teaching resources “Using Peer Review to Help Students Improve Their Writing” and “Planning and Guiding In-Class Peer Review.”