Recently as a teaching cohort, my colleagues and I were asked the questions “why is receiving feedback from students just as important as providing good feedback?”. At this point, I thought “how can I receive positive feedback in the classroom and from who?”
Whether you are a student or teacher receiving feedback in any form, it provides a wide array of opportunities to build upon skills that require development. There are many tools available in the classroom for teachers to provide feedback, that provide students stepping stones in achieving their goals and in this post I will focus on the use of Google Forms that provide this immediate feedback.
What exactly is feedback?
Feedback is described by Hattie, 2012 as ” information about how we are doing in our efforts to reach a goal”. However, as teachers, we can be required to provide feedback in a number of different methods to provide students suggestions on improving their work. Wiggins, 2012 also suggests that “decades of education research support the idea that by teaching less and providing more feedback, we can produce greater learning “.
In the image below taken from Matt Miller’s Ditch That Textbook post on providing powerful feedback in the classroom based on Grant Wiggins “Seven Keys to Effective Feedback”. This describes 7 ways that teachers when using the tools that I will describe below can provide effective feedback in their classroom. In my classroom, I focus on the timely and ongoing nature of feedback as it allows my students a clear path to achieve the stated goal of 12 months of growth in a 12 month period of time.
Why use Google Forms as a tool to provide feedback?
Using Google Forms in the classroom isn’t a new concept to many teachers, however using this tool as a way to provide instantaneous feedback is one way that can help provide teachers another way to create a communication channel with their student, albeit it being in an online version.
When opening up a basic form, teachers are able to make that same form into a quiz, by being able to assign specific values to the questions that are set. In doing so, this instance of student feedback provides the opportunity to allow automatic grading. As teachers time can be limited, this can provide teachers the one on one setting to discuss how students can work towards achieving their goals.
In addition to assigning auto-grading of the questions, teachers will also access other features that can assist in providing feedback. Being able to immediately release the grade after each student submission, or choosing to do it later after you manually review it. Both options allow teachers and students to receive immediate feedback. Choosing to show respondents different information, such as questions that were missed, the correct answers, and how many points the question was worth, can provide that extra incentive for students to work on the instant feedback that this online quiz provides.
One thing to remember when using this feedback tool is that not every question type can be automatically graded. Currently, the only options set for automatic grading are multiple choice, short answer, checkbox, or dropdown. The other options rest have to be graded manually.
There are many tools that provide instantaneous feedback, but as Bill Gates states in the YouTube video below “we all need people who give us feedback as it is the only way to improve”. As Wiggins, 2012 states ” feedback does not need to come only from the teacher, or even from people at all. Technology is one powerful tool—part of the power of computer-assisted learning is unlimited, timely feedback and opportunities to use it”. Using Google Forms as a feedback tool, I have found to provide many ways in which students can learn from each other and from the feedback I provide.
Miller, Matt 2019 “Providing powerful feedback in the classroom: Strategies, tips, and tools from fellow educators http://ditchthattextbook.com/2019/01/18/providing-powerful-feedback-in-the-classroom-strategies-tips-and-tools-from-fellow-educators/
Wiggins, Grant. 2012 ” Seven Keys to Effective Feedback” Feedback for Learning Pages 10-16. Vol 70, Ep 1. Educational Leadership. https://blogs.svvsd.org/admininduction/wp-content/uploads/sites/8/2012/10/ASCD-Wiggins-Feedback-2012.pdf
Hattie, J., & Timperley, H. (2007). The Power of Feedback. Review of Educational Research, 77(1), 81–112. https://doi.org/10.3102/003465430298487