Successful Peer Review Strategies Getting Ready for Peer Review • What you get out of peer review depends on what you put into it. • Your job as a writer is to listen and ask questions. • Your job as a peer reviewer is to give good feedback and give each essay your full attention. • You are job as a reviewer is NOT to fix grammar and spelling only. Tips for Giving Criticism • 1.Make it constructive. – “Construct” means “to build.” Even when you are pointing out an area for improvement, your criticism should help to build the writer’s ability to write a successful essay. – Positive comments are also appropriate. Tell a writer what he or she did well and encourage him or her to do more of that. • 2. Be kind, yet honest. Never tear down another writer, but don’t hesitate to point out passages that don’t make sense and other mistakes. Telling an author “It’s fine” when it is not fine does not help him or her. Tips for Giving Criticism • 3. Give every essay in your peer group your focus and attention. Come to class prepared to read and think analytically about your group mates’ essays. Remember, your classmates are going to give their attention to your essay, so it’s only fair that you return the favor. • 4. Everyone has something to offer. Don’t be intimidated if you feel that you’re being asked to comment on a ‘better’ writer. We comment on professional writers all the time! Tips for Taking Criticism 1. Remember that your group is offering you criticism in order to help you. Try not to be defensive, and be open to suggestions. 2. Ask questions about your group members’ comments. If you don’t understand why a group member is saying something, ask him or her to explain. 3. If a group member is being too vague, ask him or her to point to specific places in your essay where they see problems. 4. Try to propose solutions to the problems your group members see in your essay. Ask if these solutions would solve the problems. Using Turnitin to Check on Balance of Sources and Original Material • View your own submission on turnitin and view the originality report. If you did not upload, spend this time drafting. • What did turnitin mark as “unoriginal” (these are the highlighted portions)? Do these unoriginal passages have quote marks around them and give credit using in-text citations? • Is your similarity score more than 30%? This will need to be fixed before you turn in a final draft, and all direct quotes and paraphrases will need to be properly cited with both in-text citations and works cited entries. Any essay that has more than a 30% similarity score will not be graded. A new version that scores less than 30% must be uploaded to the late folder and will lose 10% of points possible. Preparing for Peer Review • Choose the “peer mark” report and read the comments from both of your peers. • Formulate at least one question/clarification you would like to ask each person. Peer Review Time • Focusing on one essay at a time, review the answers to the questions and discuss ways to improve. All group members should be involved in the discussion. I should not see anyone working alone. • You should spend about twenty to thirty minutes on each essay. If your group finishes with all three essays in less than an hour, you did not spend enough time on peer review. – Work on the revisions your group suggested. – Work on homework for this or another class. Revision Time • “Revision” means “to see again,” hopefully with a new perspective provided by your peers. There is no one-size-fits-all advice about your papers, but here are some suggestions: • Work on the issues identified by your peers. Incorporate new ideas that came up during peer review. • Many drafts I looked at had uncited sources or overuse of cited sources. Work on the balance of your own words and your sources. • Other drafts I saw did not have enough sources. Remember, you must have THREE sources in the body of your paper, either direct quotes or paraphrases. • Do more research. Work on deepening your understanding of your topic. What is the history behind things being the way they are now? What do various people/groups who have a stake in this issue think about it? What are their REASONS for thinking the way they do?