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Eli Review Best Practices in 15 Minutes

At San Francisco State University, the Center for Equity and Excellence in Teaching and Learning (CEETL) sponsors a Teaching and Learning Community focused on Eli Review.  The following videos were recorded in that setting and are offered here as resources for those making a sudden shift to remote teaching in Spring 2020.

Typical First Week

In the first week, students need help understanding why peer feedback can improve their learning and how to submit work in Eli Review. We offer a free and open set of tasks to introduce students to the purpose and steps. The video walks instructors through their process for helping students focus while giving feedback and follow-through on receiving it.

Describe-Evaluate-Suggest for Comments

Bill Hart-Davidson’s three moves of helpful feedback are the foundation for teaching students to become better reviewers. The video and free and open slideshow includes strategies for providing explicit comment instructions in a peer review as well as modeling and using helpfulness rating to reinforce describe-evaluate-suggest.

Describe-Evaluate-Suggest for Reviews

The same three moves that produce helpful feedback can help instructors design effective reviews. The review questions scaffold what reviewers notice as they read, how they evaluate the draft according to the criteria, and how they talk with writers about next steps. This video provides strategies for making sure that a review task is so clear that a weak writer has everything they need to be a helpful reviewer.

Select-Prioritize-Reflect for Plans

Helpful feedback only matters if students use it, and revision plans are a low-stakes way of holding students accountable for following-through on the feedback they’ve received. Only Eli has revision plans that copy peer feedback to a separate list where writers can prioritize and reflect on each comment, so this is a moment in the writing process that students find unfamiliar.

Go-Shuffle-Rethink-Add-See Me: Instructor Feedback on Plans


Instructor feedback is a threat in peer learning because an instructor’s comments can undermine and overwrite peer feedback. This video covers strategies for coaching the thinking students are doing between drafts. Go-Shuffle-Rethink-Add-See Me helps instructors focus on students’ revision decisions more than on their drafts. Also, a strategy for composing 85% re-usable, 15% personal comments makes the work load of responding to plans manageable.

Modeling Worked Examples

Instructors can help students succeed when they explain how successful writers met criteria. Sweller’s research on cognitive load and worked examples explains that focus and elaboration are key. Rogers and Fellers’s research cautions that models need to be within reach to be motivating. The video covers strategies for using Eli’s analytics to locate top of the middle models and then how to mark-up a model.

Eli Review Best Practices in 15 Minutes was published to the Eli Review Blog in the categories Example Peer Feedback Tasks, Pedagogy, Professional Development, Tutorials.

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