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Written Take-Home Peer Review

Having students exchange papers, take them home, and write a short critique is perhaps the most common method of peer review. This is not necessarily the best for a Signature Course. It works best in upper-division courses where students are more accustomed to working independently.

How to Use

Provide guidelines for students’ written critiques. Consider adapting the instructions that Seth Kahn gives students. This method focuses students on ideas, requires them to use specific language, and provides structure for the revision that follows peer review. This method focuses students on ideas, requires them to use specific language, and provides some
structure for the revision that should follow peer review.

While reading your classmate’s draft,

  1. Find at least five or six places you want information/details you’re not getting, and ask for them as specifically as possible;
  2. Mark the center of gravity in the narrative, whatever you think is the most interesting or important part of the story; and
  3. Mark the passage where you like the writing best, and try to explain in a sentence or two what you like about it.

Kahn follows up with in-class revision sessions where students address peers’ responses.