Dialogic Feedback

action without feedback is completely unproductive for a learner (Laurillard, 2002)

We have always prided ourselves on the quality and timeliness of the feedback that we provide in Global Challenges courses, and yet for a long time we never achieved great student satisfaction in this area. We often felt frustrated that students ‘failed’ to avail themselves of the feedback provided, or simply did not seem to recognise the various forms of feedback we were providing as being valid feedback. What we have come to realise is that in addition to providing feedback, we need to teach students how to access, use and respond to feedback. This is as much a part of providing feedback as the actual comments that we make. Part of this realisation was recognising that providing feedback is a process rather than an isolated or boundaried event.

Although not a new term, we have defined our feedback process as ‘dialogic’. We commence a feedback dialogue from the first moments of meeting our students, and continue this dialogue through each and every session. Clearly this is punctuated by formative and summative assessments; these do not occur in isolation, but rather in the context of the existing dialogue.



Laurillard, D. 2002. Rethinking university teaching: A conversational framework for the effective use of learning technologies. 2nd ed. London: Routledge. [Access in the library; purchase online]