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However, if you fail to do so, there’s no point in engaging in the process.Resist the urge to say everything is fine and instead focus on how you can help the writer learn someone from the process. Hand them our handy tips and the great peer editing checklist.
An initial full reading will help you get familiar with the writer’s style and understand the points the essay is making before you draw any conclusions with your feedback.
During this first reading, focus on what the writer is trying to say, and make sure the points he or she is making are clear.
Provide constructive feedback that highlights the positive areas of the essay while also pointing out some areas for improvement.
Don’t provide sweeping statements such as, “I don’t understand your point.” Instead, provide very precise feedback on what exactly you don’t understand and what information may help you understand it better: “Perhaps you could make your point clearer by explaining why…” Take every opportunity to explain why you found something effective or ineffective.
Peer editing can be done during class time or electronically outside of class, as the documents below--from Northwestern instructors--illustrate.
The questions that students respond to can vary according to the nature of the assignment and the purpose of the peer review.First, though, here are two reminders about what peer editing is not: The first step is to read the essay all the way through without making any marks or comments.It may be difficult, but this is an important step in understanding how to structure your feedback. Here are some great tips to make sure you do the task justice. Peer editors should review an essay with the primary intention of offering advice on how it can be improved.During the peer editing process, you should be concerned with content, organization, and style.If you focus purely on punctuation and spelling errors, you may not add a significant amount of value.Your role is to help the writer ensure the essay is clear and compelling.If you’re peer editing a friend’s essay, you may not want to hurt his or her feelings by pointing out areas where there is a lack of clarity.Likewise, peer editing is an essential part of the process for student writers who want to improve and succeed.Editing a classmate’s work, however, can be a little stressful for writer and editor alike, but don’t fret the next time you are asked to be a peer editor: It’s totally possible to offer helpful feedback without sending both you and your classmate into a spiral of despair.