Written by Simon Hall, Technology-Enhanced Learning Coordinator, SSPP
This assessment pairs a standard essay assignment in Turnitin with an initial formative peer review activity using the KEATS Discussion Forum.
Leading the unit discussion
A feature of War Studies Online programmes is the selection by students of the units in each module in which they will lead the unit discussion on the set Short Essay question. After the two-week discussion period, the student(s) who led the discussion will submit the essay for individual assessment.
Students must choose one unit to lead out of the five that make up a module.
This is how it works:
The student (or students) leading the unit discussion posts an answer in the unit forum to the specified Short Essay question. Other students in the same tutorial group read and comment on the student’s answer, as in an on-campus seminar presentation.
These presentations are the core of the learning experience in War Studies Online. The many different perspectives that students bring to these discussions provide a rich context in which you can further your knowledge, deepened by your reading and guided by your tutor. This process of peer review, monitored and facilitated by the tutor, results in active engagement with the question by all participants in the discussion. The ideas and comments of other students often feed directly into the presenter’s final individual essay, subsequently submitted for marking.
This process is repeated throughout the module, with a different student (or students) leading the discussion for the second unit, and so on. All students benefit from the lively discussions that ensue.
It is especially important that all students participate in all units, not just those they choose to lead. Participation is required of all students, not only in the unit where they give their presentation, but in all unit forums. In each module 5% of your overall mark will be awarded for satisfactory participation. Providing the considered feedback that is encouraged in our forums benefits the provider as well as the recipient, and is a key part of your learning.
Example in Peer Evaluation