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Monday, 24 September 2012

Feedback process for group work

This post follows on from examples in my flexible learning course regarding the Conference and Events paper I teach in the Diploma of Travel and Tourism.  I am just in the process of evaluating, marking and providing feedback to the class.  They formed 2 groups and I have been deliberating how to offer feedback as a group and individually.

The course;

  • Work on a theoretical 3 day conference and submit a portfolio and presentation
  • Design, plan and work on a themed dinner
  • Produce a blog which tracks their progress
  • Collaborate in a group to produce the end result.
  • Produce a reflection of the process based on these questions;
Write a paragraph reflecting on how well your team/you performed (critical group/self reflection) e.g. what you did well, what you could have done better, what you found difficult, what was easy.  How well did you as a team problem solve in an effort to deal with difficult issues.  

These reflections were sent to me via email and will form the basis of my individual feedback to them.
I intend to meet with each group and offer verbal feedback on their portfolios.  Then I will provide individual feedback via email and provide information on any re-sits for those students that have not put enough team effort into the group work.

There is plenty of evidence to show which students did not contribute effectively to the group and there is opportunity for them to submit further work.  So far these new processes have worked and the students feel that the process has been fair and equal.  This has been possible by the fact that there are only 10 students in the class, I will have to re-think this process if the class size increased dramatically.


  1. Helen your questions are excellent for encouraging group self-critique about their performance. It will be interesting to see if each member of the group comes up with similar responses. If your class size does increase then you may wish to introduce some peer work - where individuals in each group meet with other groups to discuss their critique of the team process. Then you are sent a summary from each group of the outcomes. Any issues will still be voiced and you can still deal with them. Perhaps if it is done formatively before the group process has ended, the issues could be resolved and any individuals not performing as part of the team could be assigned to a mentor from another team. Such mentors could gain extra credit.

    As a teacher you can be creative in how you re-distribute the workload especially in a student-centred learning environment. Does this suggestion sound workable?

  2. Hi Bronwyn,
    I like the idea of peer critiquing the group process. Since my last post the groups have presented their portfolios. It was obvious with one group that they had all co-operated with the given tasks but had not collaborated with each other to integrate their work, the consequence being that the portfolio was dis-jointed with gaps and did not flow. In my feedback process I asked them if it would have been better to have elected a leader to co-ordinate the work that was being done? They were already treating one of the students as a pseudo leader but she was resisting the responsibility.
    Their answer was yes as they felt the group lacked direction in putting the portfolio together, and it was evident they rushed it.
    These are great observations for me to take forward to my next class.