Teachers should consider this principle ifthey would like students to share the feedback load by developing student self-regulation.

While teachers deliver the bulk of formal feedback to the students in their classroom, research suggests that students actually receive most of their feedback from peers and not their teacher. This will often come during informal conversations throughout the learning process. For example, students will often ask each other for clarification on the requirements of the task, or what to do when they are stuck.

The issue is that most feedback provided to a student by peers is inaccurate. When delivered throughout learning, it often will not align with the expectations of the teacher. When formalized in peer assessment activities, students often don’t know how to deliver effective feedback, or what constitutes effective feedback. The key to effective peer feedback is built on clearly defined learning goals and success criteria, and through structured and guided peer feedback. Developing peer feedback practices will lighten the load on the teacher being the sole provider of high-level feedback, and will further develop student capacity to self-regulate and self-monitor their own work.

When this principle is in action:

The teacher…

– Builds the pre-conditions for peer assessment by linking lessons to clearly defined learning goals, criteria for success, exemplars, and strategies to improve.
– Models to the students how to have a conversation with a peer related to the learning goals and performance on a specific task.
– Provides opportunities and structures to support student conversations about learning. This might include student-friendly rubrics and feedback prompts to guide peer conversations about learning, and formalized peer assessment.
– Keyset can be used to provide students with teacher-created comments and resources that students can use as a guide in the peer-to-peer feedback process.

The student…

– Can engage with peers in a dialogue around learning in the classroom.
– Can develop a critical lens in which to view their own work, thus developing the capacity to self-regulate and self-monitor.


Austin’s butterfly (Elementary peer feedback)


Praise Question Suggestion (High school peer feedback)


Peer Critique


A scholarly approach to solving the feedback dilemma in practice