How to learn: Is peer assessment useful?

As a college freshman in 2002, I remember my first writing class where we had to hand in an essay every two weeks.  The week before we handed in the essay, we would have to bring multiple copies of our rough drafts to class and have them be peer reviewed by our classmates. 

I still remember the insecurities I had in having someone else read my papers, but as the course went on, I came to enjoy having my papers being read by my peers, getting their feedback, and having the chance to improve my writing and thoughts before I handed in my final draft. So, when I started teaching in France, I wanted to bring this pedagogical experience into my classroom knowing first-hand the benefits of using peer assessments as both an instructor and from the point of view of a student.
For example, some of the main benefits for using peer assessments are explained in Liu & Carless 2006:

  • The strong evidence that peer feedback enhances student learning
  • The approach allows students to have more frequent feedback
  • Students who write a feedback are able to demonstrate understanding of the material through analysis and expression
  • Writing assessments helps students to develop objectivity in relation to grading criteria, which allows them to better self-evaluate their own work

Read all of this article on SKEMA’s knowledge website. This article is written by Elizabeth Tomacruz, a SKEMA professor.