Using feedback to improve work

The University of Brighton aims to provide feedback on marked coursework within 20 working days of submission. Lecturers work incredibly hard to get work marked and returned in that time, although it is worth acknowledging that there may sometimes be delays due to the sheer workload and demand on staff time. However, you will be informed when you should receive your feedback by and if it will be delayed. If your work is submitted via Turnitin, you are usually able to see the feedback deadline date at the submission deadline point.

In order to make the most of the feedback you recieve, you will need to reflect on what has been said, think about what it means for your progress and work out the next steps to ensure you improve in further assignments.

Don’t be afraid to contact the marker if you would like some further clarfication on their comments. Fully understanding your feedback is crucial to the development of your academic skills. The marker will be pleased that you’re so committed to your studies.

It is good to be aware that it is not just lecturers who you can receive feedback from, have you considered the list of people below who you can approach?

  • Staff (including course tutor, module tutors, other lecturers on your course and your personal tutor)
  • Other students on your course
  • Friends/ family

All of these people can give you different kinds of advice from the perspective of a fellow student, a complete outsider or a tutor. This feedback could be before or after you submit your work. You might want another studen or friends/family to check your work for grammar, or tell you if what you have written makes sense. Or you might want further feedback from a different member of staff to the one that marked your work, in order to help you understand what it is that you’ve done well or not done well in. The feedback could be some comments on how to make your arguments clearer or some motivation to do a bit more reading to raise your grades – talking it through with others can help you to see the situation much more clearly.

Receiving, reflecting on and applying feedback is essential to personal development in your studies. As a student, you should make full use of any opportunity to receive feedback.

  • Apply what you have learnt to your next assessment; keep in mind your feedback and make sure you don’t repeat the same mistakes
  • Look up references that lecturers suggest, there’s alway a reason if they have done so
  • As a study exercise, you could consider re-writing certain elements of assignments applying your new knowledge to cement the feedback
  • Be reflective – throughout your time at university you could try writing a reflective blog or diary to keep track of the lessons you have learnt and refer back to it when needed – click on the LearnHigher link on the right for more information about being reflective
  • Translate your feedback into SMART goals – Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, Timely
  • Get to know students on your course in the year above- students who are a year or two ahead of you will have lots of useful experience and insight to be learnt from
  • Be proactive – if you are have any difficulties with your studies then seek support
  • Don’t be afraid to ask! – If you don’t understand either something on your course or something in the feedback you have received then just ASK!

Advice on being a reflective learner and learning from your feedback