|You can see the comments alongside the student's essay.|
Notice that the comments aren't all "stock", but there are times
that individualized feedback is required.
There was one glaring negative I noticed about feedback: it is overwhelmingly critical. It is focused on things that students need to improve on. As a student, it would be really disappointing to see all of my hard work so critically looked at, even though the criticism is constructive. I need to be conscious of commenting on the positives of the student's work.
In addition to cutting down marking time, I want to ensure that students are actually reading and using the provided feedback. For the first essay, I dedicated approximately 40 minutes to returning essays. Students were provided with a sheet entitled "Next Steps to Improved Writing", developed by my colleague, Scott Jordan. Students were required to review my comments and highlight the areas (from Scott's handout) they needed to improve on for next time. This was great, because students actually had to go over the feedback and many took the opportunity to ask for clarification. For the upcoming essay, I will return each student's "Next Steps to Improved Writing", so that they can ensure they aren't making the same errors.
Overall, I am hopeful that as I become familiar with my own feedback document, time spent marking will be reduced. Additionally, I am hoping that by providing the necessary tools and time, the feedback will actually be used by students.