Research Seminar Series: Indicators of disparity in the language of feedback

24 March 2020, 16:00 – 17:00

Sheena Gardner (School of Humanities, CAMC) & Siân Alsop (GLEA)

Disparity of attainment between students and groups of students from different backgrounds is an ongoing concern within HE. This talk explores institutional practices that may contribute to this disparity, focusing on relationships between the language of written feedback, student background, and degree award outcomes. To do so, we developed a feedback framework comprised of five main functions (‘advice’, ‘critique’, ‘observation’, ‘praise’, ‘query’), which branch into three levels of granularity. In two pilots, we applied this framework to a sample of 62 (12 + 50) written feedback texts received by students from different backgrounds. We found that it was possible to differentiate the nature of the written feedback received based on variables of discipline, grade and, to an extent, self-identified ethnicity. We will discuss our preliminary findings, and the direction of the wider research project of which they are a part. 

If you’d like to attend, please contact Benet Vincent – – for the Zoom link.