Options for Commenting on Student Papers

Brad Hughes, UW-Madison WAC Program
Whether we consider them or not, we actually have many choices for how we'll comment on student papers.  The sample comments that follow are designed to illustrate some of these many options.

sample comments from two types of commenters--the minimalist and the friendly, interested reader

Student Guidelines for Peer Review: Psychology

Professor Colleen Moore, Psychology Department, UW-Madison
Notice that in this peer-review process, reviewers first outline their peer's draft (to help the author see how readers understand its organization) and then offer advice for strengthening the paper.

Psychology 411


Peer Review Instructions

Read the paper, and comment on the draft. Note what isn’t clear, what sentences are awkward, etc.


1. Write an outline (sometimes it helps to number the paragraphs when you do this).


Motivating Students to Grow as Writers

Sara Lindberg, Psychology Department, UW-Madison
How do you increase student motivation to write and give tough critical feedback on writing? Instructor Sara Lindberg gives concrete tips based on her experience teaching in Psychology 225.

There are several things you can do to help your students cope with critical feedback—a necessary evil in the writing process.

A Sequence of Formal and Informal Assignments

Colleen Moore
Before and during the time her students begin work on their 10-15 page research papers, Professor Colleen Moore assigns eight shorter papers that encourage students to engage in critical thinking, careful reading, clear summarizing, and in-depth analysis. Moore's sequence initially builds from informal to formal writing and from simpler to more complex rhetorical tasks, enabling her students to practice and build their writing skills. While students are researching and writing their term papers, her assignments push students to stay engaged in the writing process and make it possible for her to give them feedback on their work in progress. Note also her very clear and explicit instructions and goals for students in each assignment.

Course goals:


Syndicate content