Understanding students’ views on feedback to inform the development of technology-supported feedback systems

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Linda Corrin
University of Melbourne

Paula de Barba
University of Melbourne

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In an increasingly expanding higher education system, students have routinely said that they don’t get enough access to feedback to support their learning. While this feedback loop is recognised as a critical issue, the growing use of technology as part of teaching and learning could provide some solutions to this problem. The emergence of the field of learning analytics has the potential to provide mechanisms for reducing some of the concerns students have about receiving feedback. However, a greater understanding of how learning analytics can be used to provide meaningful assessment feedback to students is needed.

This paper presents the initial findings from a study that investigated students’ preferences for the delivery of assessment feedback to improve their learning. The findings show that there is a diversity of student perspectives on what feedback is most useful for their learning which is influenced by the type of assessment, the discipline in which the assessment takes place, the year level of the student and the ability to compare performance to others. The outcomes of this study provide evidence of what students want when it comes to analytics-based feedback which can be used to inform the development of guidelines for how such feedback can be designed and delivered in higher education.

About the authors

Linda Corrin

Dr Linda Corrin is a Senior Lecturer in Higher Education in the Williams Centre for Learning Advancement, Faculty of Business and Economics, at the University of Melbourne. In her current role, she provides support for curriculum development, delivery and assessment to staff in the faculty. Her research interests include students’ engagement with technology, learning analytics, feedback, and learning design. Currently, she is working on several large research projects exploring how learning analytics can be used to provide meaningful and timely feedback to academics and students. Linda is member of the University of Melbourne’s Learning Analytics Research Group and co-founder of the Victorian and Tasmanian Learning Analytics Network. She is also a co-coordinator of the ASCILITE Learning Analytics Special Interest Group.

Paula de Barba

Paula de Barba is a Research Fellow in Higher Education with the Melbourne Centre for the Study of Higher Education at The University of Melbourne. Her current research is in the areas of educational psychology and educational technology. Paula is interested on how students’ cognition and emotions influence their learning, and how technology can support and promote learning. Constructs investigated include self-regulated learning, achievement motivation, interest, and feedback.