Teaching Tip: Peer Review

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Including Peer Editing in writing classes is something that many teachers find difficult to implement and many students resist. Before trying to include peer review in your writing lessons, make sure you have a strong group dynamic in your class. Often students are less resistant to peer review when they feel safe and comfortable with each other. To have effective peer review, your students need to trust each other. 

Another thing that helps get buy in from your students is to fully explain to them the benefits of this type of exercise. Removing the mystery behind using peer review can allow students to take control of their learning and educate them about effective writing strategies. Try brainstorming with them the benefits of doing it. Here are some ideas for you to include: 

  1. You develop the skill or awareness of ‘noticing’ other’s/ self errors.
  2. You learn about your mistakes
  3. You reflect on your own language skills.
  4. You get practice reading critically.
  5. You feel open about finding and commenting on peer errors.
  6. This helps you avoid making the same mistake.
  7. This can make you a better learner/ teacher.
  8. You can learn vocabulary and other writing styles from each other.
  9. You can gain confidence in yourself and your skills.
  10. It is fun
  11. It gives you a sense of control in language development.
  12. You become involved in the ‘process’ of writing.
  13. Feedback during the writing process (as opposed to at the end when the teacher finally gets it) is more effective in improving writing skills.
  14. Develop a closer sense of being classmates or of a class community.
  15. You become more open about ‘critical thinking’.

Adapted from “Peer Teaching & Peer Editing: A Writing Class’s Happy Marriage“, Patrick T. Randolph, TESOL 2011

image source: www.phd2published.com 

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