“Ultimately, in order to create a high-performance learning team in our classrooms, the students and the teacher have to be accountable to one another.” –B. Johnson
Okay, let’s admit it. We all get a little excited to see how we’ve done on the past week’s assignments. So you sign into CampusConnect. You click into your course, you check your grades and… oh no… only 20 out of 30. How can this be?
You click on your grade and you read the instructor’s feedback.
Hello John Doe, Good job with number 1 and 2! Unfortunately your score is a little lower due to incorrectly answering number 4. It was a good attempt; however you described the 4 rights. Please add more detail to your answers in the future.
You sit back in your chair. Puzzled, more so bamboozled at what “more details” means. Also, what was wrong with my 4 rights?
So what do you do next?
You have a few options.
A) You could sign out and forget about it; what does that instructor really know anyway?
B) Throw your hands up in disbelief and curse at your glowing computer screen.
C) Have you ever considered giving your instructor feedback on your feedback?
Many times, an instructor will try to give enough detail and feedback to your answer to lead you to understanding the concept. In the instructor’s mind, they feel that with the feedback being offered, you will understand what they are intending for you to understand. However, not every learner is the same. Some feedback, although intended to help the student, may confuse them more. How is the instructor to know if you do not tell them?
By reaching out to your instructor to ask for clarification, or to ask them for more details based on their feedback, you are helping yourself to better understand the concept. You are also helping the instructor to better convey their feedback to you. Instructors want to be in contact with their students. They are the biggest cheerleader in your corner as long as you want to be on a team with them.
Johnson, B. (2009, February 3) Student Feedback Helps Teachers Grow. Edutopia [Blog post]. Retrieved from: http://www.edutopia.org/student-feedback-accountability-teachers