Advice for Action with Automatic Feedback Systems

Whitelock, Denise (2018). Advice for Action with Automatic Feedback Systems. In: Caballé, Santi and Conesa, Jordi eds. Software Data Engineering for Network eLearning Environments. Lecture Notes on Data Engineering and Communications Technologies, 11. Springer, pp. 139–160.



This Chapter reviews the role of feedback in supporting student learning. It highlights some of the problems that persist with providing meaningful feedback, which should preferably take the form of providing advice, that can be actioned by the student. It then discusses the progress made with automatic feedback through a number of case studies which include the OpenEssayist, Open Comment and OpenMentor computer assisted feedback systems.

Findings suggest feedback that provides socio-emotive support to students, together with recognising their effort, in turn encourages the student to continue working on a problem. The use of automatic hints also moves the feedback closer to “Advice for Action”. Building tools with automatic feedback to support both students and tutors can relieve some of the continual pressure on staff resources and three case studies are presented below that address this issue.

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