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#4C18 Full-Day Workshop on Peer Learning

The Eli Review Team will be leading a full-day workshop at the 2018 meeting of the College Conference on Composition and Communication (#4c18) in Kansas City, Missouri.

We created Eli Review in 2007 to be a peer learning app for feedback and revision. Creating peer learning software and helping thousands of teachers learn to make peer interaction more central to their pedagogy has taught us a lot. Now we want to share what we’ve learned.

This is not a session about Eli Review. Rather, this full-day workshop distills our decade of work into six thresholds for cultivating peer learning as a core practice:

  1. scheduling frequent feedback;
  2. making learning visible;
  3. designing for helpful feedback;
  4. coaching strategically and authoritatively;
  5. requiring reflection and revision; and
  6. becoming an evidence-based teacher.

The hands-on workshop guides participants in developing a peer learning manifesto, drafted prior to the workshop and revised throughout the day. The write-review-revise cycles will be punctuated by presentations from the Eli Review team and two power users, Nedra Reynolds and John Holland.

This is not a sales pitch for the app. In fact, the overriding conclusion of nearly 80 instructors who heard a sales pitch for the app last fall was that Eli invited them to change their writing pedagogy. That’s the invitation of this workshop.

➠ Register here until March 14

Workshop Facilitators

Jeff Grabill

  • Co-inventor, Eli Review
  • Michigan State University
  • Associate Provost for Teaching, Learning, and Technology
  • Twitter: @grabill

Bill Hart-Davidson

  • Co-inventor, Eli Review
  • Michigan State University
  • Professor of Writing and Rhetoric, Associate Dean for Research and Graduate Education
  • Twitter: @billhd

Mike McLeod

  • Co-inventor, Eli Review
  • VP Product Development and Support, Eli Review
  • Twitter: @mcleodm3 and @elireview

Melissa Graham Meeks

  • Director of Professional Development, Eli Review
  • Twitter: @melissagmeeks

Nedra Reynolds

  • University of Rhode Island
  • The Director of Writing Across URI, Professor of Writing and Rhetoric
  • Eli Review user since 2012

John Holland

  • San Francisco State University
  • Lecturer
  • Eli Review user since 2015
  • Twitter: @hollandsf

Full Workshop Description and Schedule

  • Level: All
  • Hashtags: Pedagogy (#Pedagogy), Assessment (#Assess), Technology (#Tech)
  • Abstract: Learn to design peer review so that routine feedback transforms writing behaviors and drives high-quality revision.

Learning requires environments that are rich in feedback and revision. In the introduction to Peer Pressure, Peer Power, Corbett, LaFrance, and Decker assert that although “the reward of collaborative peer review and response can be significant and even transformative, those rewards can be difficult to reap in practice” (6). That is, good peer learning outcomes are challenging to realize unless good practices are modeled and taught. But in order to teach effective peer-based feedback and revision, it is necessary to see students’ thinking.

Designed for both new and experienced teachers in any discipline, this hands-on workshop helps teachers develop proven strategies for cultivating peer learning as a core practice. The workshop moves instructors through six threshold concepts about peer learning using feedback and revision:

  • scheduling feedback labor;
  • making learning visible;
  • designing for helpful feedback;
  • coaching effort and quality;
  • requiring reflection and revision; and
  • becoming an evidence-based teacher.

To take best advantage of our time together, participants will bring to the workshop a first-draft description about their approach to teaching feedback and revision and will iteratively develop it throughout the day. Participants will leave the workshop having critically engaged the thresholds through revisions to their statements, which will result in a manifesto for peer learning. In addition, participants will leave the workshop with practices and action steps for facilitating peer learning in their classrooms.

Participants will need a laptop with wireless Internet capability in order to participate in the workshop activities.

Workshop Schedule

Morning: Feedback and Revision (Student) Interactions

The first half of the workshop highlights ways of setting up feedback-rich activities.

9:00 a.m. – Peer Learning Manifestos

To start, participants will provide feedback on each other’s manifestos about teaching feedback and revision; the panel will help identify values, practices, and questions that inform the rest of our day.

9:30 a.m. – Threshold 1: Scheduling Feedback Labor

Participants will reflect on our opening feedback and revision iteration and discuss in small groups. Speaker 1 will guide the groups as they consider ways to think about how frequently to engage students in feedback and revision loops based on research-informed best practices, showing examples from several disciplines. Participants will synthesize their insights in a one-minute paper, which will be reviewed in small groups.

10:30 a.m. Threshold 2: Making Learning Visible

This section opens with a group brainstorming activity about the kinds of data teacher-researchers may track in order to fully account for learning during feedback and revision. Speaker 2 will explain why making learning visible matters to instructors and peers. Speaker 3 will introduce the engagement analytics by examining the group’s first review activity; the group will talk about the trends and what they mean. Participants will then make a personal list of data points/clues as a first step in developing a methodology for doing evidence-based teaching.

11:30 a.m. Threshold 3: Designing for Helpful Feedback

Speaker 4 will explain how removing time and space boundaries for in-class review improved feedback. Then, Speaker 5 will lead small groups in deducing other principles of effective review design from examples, particularly by exploring how review prompts affect students’ cognitive load and influence the feedback writers receive. Before the lunch break, participants will articulate three principles of designing reviews that they’ll use to transform their teaching.

Afternoon: Feedback and Revision (Instructor) Interventions

The workshop’s second half situates review activities in a broader feedback-rich environment.

1:30 p.m. Teaching Between Activities

After lunch, Speaker 1 will synthesize the morning’s emphasis on designing feedback activities and outline the afternoon’s focus on what instructors do during and between peer learning sessions (e.g., coaching, commenting, grading, designing more reviews). Speaker 6 will share how an online peer learning platform put feedback and revision labor in the center of a hybrid writing class. The speaker will discuss how the class shifted through course design, interactions, engagement, reflection, and student satisfaction.

2:00 p.m. Threshold 4: Coaching Effort and Quality

Participants will spend a few minutes freewriting about the instructor’s role in peer learning. Then, Speaker 2 will identify ways of intervening well in peer learning. Participants will use those strategies to give each other feedback on their freewriting. As model of coaching effort and quality, Speaker 3 will provide a tour of analytics that can help instructors debrief with the class and individuals.

3:00 p.m. Threshold 5: Requiring Reflection and Revision

Speaker 4 will explore how revision plans facilitate reflection and promote transfer. Speaker 3 and 5 will demonstrate a revision plan. Then, participants will build a revision plan for their manifestos that unifies all the feedback they’ve received throughout the day; they’ll also add notes that specify the actions they’ll take to transform their teaching.

4:00 p.m. Threshold 6: Becoming an Evidence-Based Teacher Every Day

After summarizing the day’s key ideas, Speaker 1 will challenge participants to make feedback and revision labor in peer learning central to their pedagogies.

Cover photo credit: Tim Samoff

#4C18 Full-Day Workshop on Peer Learning was published to the Eli Review Blog in the category Uncategorized.

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