Tag Archives: peer marking

Submitting work – or why Google Classroom is not yet fit for Higher Education

Using paper it was always clear when students gave their work to their Teacher/Lecturer, it was physically handed over.  When online submission started the virtual world imitated the real one students attached their files to a submission point and when they clicked submit they could no longer change the files.

Things have moved on – both in what’s technically possible and in the kind of assessment that people are happy to attempt online.  This week I have helped a couple of people who were doing some sort of peer assessment online (one formative the other summative), this makes the transfer of control or possession of the submitted files more problematic as they need to stop being accessible to one student (group of students) and become accessible to another to mark the work.

Of course with Cloud tools you have the ability to share a piece of work so it is under the control of several people at the same time (which was a benefit for the peer group assessment) but this opens up the possibility of people editing after the submission deadline.

Now we have peer assessment tools in Blackboard, and Assignment submission tools, we have Google apps, and wiki’s (both inside and outside  the Blackboard course) so we have a wide choice of solutions.

Turns out for this kind of process the best thing is to ask at each stage who can see/edit the work and who “Owns” it.  Then you simply select the tools that provide what you want.

If you are interested – for the Group essay that is peer marked and then the marking is marked by a lecturer we planned this route.

  • Initial collaborative creation – Google Doc (owned by work group)
  • Submitted group work – downloaded to word and submitted to the Group Assignment tool on Blackboard (owned by Lecturer)
  • Peer Marking – Lecturer extract all files from the grade centre and uploads them to Lecturers Google Drive.  Shares each file with marking group with comment rights only (owned by Lecturer, marking group can see/edit)
  • Final Marking – Lecturer downloads to word the commented files and attached them as feedback to the original groups submission (optionally with additional staff marking on original script) together with their grade for doing the work.  Also attaches files to marking group in the “Peer” column together with the grade they get for doing the marking (owned by Lecturer, marking group can see, working group can see)

Why wouldn’t Google Classroom have been easier?  Well mainly because when you provide grades in Classroom the file immediately becomes editable to the original student again(the working group in my example).  So students can edit their work after they have received a grade – which is fine for some formative work but completely the opposite of the HE model of retention of summative work “here is the work exactly as you submitted it”


creative commons licensed ( BY-NC-SA ) flickr photo shared by msabba

A Peer Review Market

The last month has been really busy and I realise I haven’t written a Blog post as I have had no free time in the evenings.  So I am going to share one thing I did end up creating over a couple of nights.

It was originally a work idea that got more complicated and I ended up working on it in my own time because it was fun and I wouldn’t have the time to do it in work.

So the original idea was to get students to put in drafts of their work for peer review and for other students to agree to review them and provide feedback.  One of my colleagues Dr Phil Langton came up with the idea of a “Peer Review Market”, the reason for this was he has previously done peer marking with his students and although they have generally got a lot out of it a number of them have been very unhappy with the marks counting towards their grade if the marker wasn’t always as good as they could be (any of you who have done peer marking on a MOOC will know that marking quality can vary a lot and some markers can give marks you might consider unfair…).

However with no incentive to look at peers work some people wouldn’t bother and so some wouldn’t get the benefit of having comments and feedback on their work.  The solution was a “Peer Review Market” where each student could post work for review, other students could volunteer to review it and the whole thing would run on a points system where you got marks for any reviewing you did and it cost you points to get your work reviewed.

Tomates anciennes.jpg

Tomates anciennes” by User:PopolonOwn work. Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons.

It seemed fairly straightforward, so I made a couple of google forms that fed a google sheet and told Phil who dropped into my office to discuss.  As it stood it worked but it would be easy to “game” the system, there was no option to be anonymous and hey wouldn’t it be good if it could email students when people had marked their work.

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