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Making the most of feedback

Getting feedback on assessments can be one of the hardest things to deal with as a student, especially when it is easier to put your assessments away and ignore the feedback. However, you will also want to improve your grades and get better at assessments, so understanding feedback and how to use it to make changes is a useful skill to learn. Remember, feedback is not there only to justify the mark you’ve got, it’s there to show you how to improve your marks as well.

What do I do to make the most of feedback?

Make assessment part of your learning, not just a test of what you have learned.

The trick to improving your assessment grades is to take the comments and turn them into practical points for improvement. Here are some tips for making the most of your feedback:

Tip 1 – Be Active

Be active in seeking feedback. Collect your feedback and listen for general feedback in class. Make sure you get your assessment/script and go through the comments.

Some feedback may not be just for you so listen out for comments made during class discussions or in Canvas discussions.

Tip 2 – Understand

Think of feedback as learning advice.

Make sure you understand the comments. Lecturers can use their own feedback language, which isn’t always clear. Use your lecturer’s office hours, tutorials or academic support services to make sure you know what your feedback means. Feedback is a dialogue so don’t be passive and play your part in making use of it.

Tip 3 – Link

Link the feedback back to the assessment criteria and the marking rubrics. Doing this will help you make judgments about your work, which will improve your performance.

Tip 4 – Act!

Remember, feedback isn’t feedback until it is acted on. Ask the question – what specific improvements can I make on my work? Then decide where you can use the advice next – it may be in the next assessment or it may be in a different course.

Tip 5 – Seek!

Feedback will point to specific points of improvement – content, structure, language, research etc. As a student in the Business School, you can access support that will help you develop the skills highlighted by your feedback.

Your lecturers are there to support you with content and the Academic Skills team are there either to help with academic skills support or refer you to the right University of Auckland service. Contact the Academic Skills team and get some one-on-one support to develop your academic skills.