BIOMEDICAL SCIENCE STUDENTS’ CHALLENGES AND STRATEGIES TO UNDERSTANDING FEEDBACK

Bradley S. Parfrement, Judit Kibedi, Kay Colthorpe, Louise Ainscough

Abstract


BACKGROUND

Feedback plays a crucial role in how students learn and develop throughout life (Hattie & Timperley, 2007). Although numerous barriers exist to students’ use and engagement with feedback (Winstone et al., 2017), the strategies students use to overcome said barriers for life-long learning are less clearly identified in the literature. This study investigated students’ feedback challenges and strategies when learning scientific writing.

METHODS

Second-year biomedical science students (n=358) were asked to identify challenges to understanding and applying feedback, and the strategies they used to overcome them. Responses were coded via inductive thematic analysis.

RESULTS & DISCUSSION

From preliminary data (n=94), 60 students identified challenges relating to either construction of feedback (70% of responses), application of feedback to a task they do not understand (17%), or difficulties with discussing feedback with a tutor (13%). To overcome challenges, dialogue with a tutor was a primary strategy (69% of students), while 19% engaged with scientific literature more and 12% reviewed course resources to aid their use of feedback. Interestingly, 12% of the students with no issues still sought dialogue with their tutor to further understand the feedback. These findings suggest most students identify dialogue as playing an important role in their understanding of feedback.

REFERENCES

Hattie, J., and Timperley, H., (2007). The power of feedback, Review of Educational Research, 77(1); 81-112.
Winstone, N., Nash, R., Rowntree, J., and Parker, M., (2017). ‘It'd be useful, but I wouldn't use it’: barriers to university students’ feedback seeking and recipience. Studies in Higher Education, 42(11); 2026-41.

Keywords


feedback, challenges, strategies

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