Feedback in the Online Classroom Tiffani Reardon


When we have discussion face-to-face, we don't usually grade it, and if there is feedback, it is usually instant and part of the discussion itself. Online, however, we grade our discussions as a way to encourage students to participate and we often want to engage in the discussions ourselves and leave individual feedback, letting them know if they are on the right track or not. Some tips for online discussion feedback:

  • Don't respond to every post. Studies show that your voice is more valuable when you respond to about 15% of the posts and change them around each week.
  • Leave actual feedback about the post and their grade to the student individually via the grade book. Don't post it in a response.
  • If you need to leave global feedback, consider compiling it into a document or video and post that in the announcements to the whole class.
An example of a D2L discussion board post with an instructor response


Face-to-Face, we often give feedback on papers by physically marking it up with errors, suggestions, and grades. However online, our students are turning in their papers through the LMS and it would be wasteful and time-consuming to print the papers, mark them up, and then scan them back to the students. Luckily, D2L has a much more efficient way to deliver assignment feedback via the Turnitin plug-in.

  • Turnitin checks for plagiarism and reports back a similarity percentage.
  • A feature of Turnitin, Grademark, allows you to mark up the paper like you would a physical page.
  • Both D2L and Turnitin have rubric features for grading that include the opportunity to pre-write feedback.

Quizzes and Exams

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