Video feedback is the use of video to give students personal or general (ie. to the whole class) feedback on an assignment which has been handed in and marked. Video feedforward is a technique used to introduce a task via video, highlighting the key criteria of the assignment and how it may be assessed.
Karsten Lundqvist is a lecturer in systems engineering who runs a Java module. The module is delivered over two terms and introduces the basics of Object-Oriented Programming in Java. The module itself is very practical and has a written assessment section to it. In this assessment, students are required to write a report. When reading and reviewing these, Karsten noticed that students were having a particular difficulty. To overcome this, he used his knowledge from the ASSET project and produced a piece general video feedback for the class.
The students responded well to the feedback and subsequent reports were of a better standard. The general feedback videos are only a few minutes long and are distributed a few days following the hand-in date.
Karsten believes that feedback must be timely in order to have maximum impact, namely, that it is the rapid nature of his feedback that allows the written assessments to improve, as students engage more actively and note where they went wrong. Students also receive individual feedback on their submitted assignments.
Helen Bilton is a member of staff at the IoE who has been using video feedforward to set assignments. Helen started to use the technique as she was noticing that students were not always meeting the criteria for assignments. Notably, when she videoed herself setting the assignment task, it allowed students to review more appropriately and clearly hear what was expected from them.
In Modern Languages and European Studies, Enza Siciliano Verruccio has experimented using video feedback via screencasting for individual feedback. The feedback was given in this style for only one piece of translation coursework, and was typically 15 minutes in length. To produce the screencast, Enza used Jing which is free and easy-to-use screencasting software that allows recording times up to a maximum of 5 minutes. In order to produce the longer 15-minute pieces required, feedback recordings were split into 3 x 5-minute chunks, which is one of the downsides of Jing, notes Enza. [Screencast-o-matic is similarly easy to use, and permits screencasts of 15 minutes.]
Enza’s feedback was very detailed and allowed students to understand exactly why she had marked the piece of work as she had. It also prompted students to think more about why they had made the errors they had, especially when it came to tenses and the use of the formal mode of address. It allowed the students to get into Enza’s head, as she said.
One student took the approach even further and acted very literally upon Enza’s feedback. She produced her own screencast of her marked translation, talking through why she had thought parts were correct when they were not, and the point she had been trying to get across. In so doing, she reciprocated by allowing Enza to get into her head.
While potentially rather time-consuming, this way of using screencasting for feedback is an incredibly powerful tool for understanding and correcting what may often be (especially in a language) deep-seated and fundamental misapprehensions.