A checklist for written feedback

Research (e.g. Lizzio and Wilson, 2008; Poulos and Mahony, 2008; Walker, 2009; Weaver, 2006) suggests that written feedback comments should be:

Under-
standable
Is it expressed in a language that students will
understand?
Yes/No
Selective Try to include 2/3 things that the student can
improve upon.
Yes/No
Specific Do your comments relate to specific instances in the
student’s submission?
Yes/No
Timely Are your comments provided in time to improve the
next assignment?
Yes/No
Context-
ualised
Are your comments framed with reference to the
unit and the learning outcomes?
Yes/No
Non-judge-
mental
Focused on assessment criteria, marking
descriptors?
Yes/No
Balanced Pointing out the positive as well as areas in need of
improvement?
Yes/No
Forward-
looking
Do you suggest how students might improve future
assignments?
Yes/No
Transfer-
able
Are your comments focused on processes, skills, i.e. not
just on knowledge content?
Yes/No
Personal-
ised
Are your comments specific to the student? Yes/No

Adapted from:

Nicol, D (2010) ‘From monologue to dialogue: improving written feedback processes in mass higher education’ In: Assessment and Evaluation in Higher Education 35:5, pp.501-517

© Matthew Tizzard