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Community Member

Peer Reviews Within a Group

I've created peer review groups and I'd like Canvas to assign peer reviews within each group--so group members will be reading one another's drafts. How do I do this? 

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4 Replies
Community Champion

This is one of my frustrations with Peer Reviews, is that you cannot guarantee a group member's assignment will be reviewed by someone else in the group. The lowest specificity you can have is within the same course section.

The only way to ensure it's someone in the same group is to manually assign the reviews as they come in. 

Bummer! I was hoping to avoid assigning manually. 

Community Champion

At the risk of giving too much unsolicited feedback, our teachers looked at doing something similar about a year ago. Here's what I sent them based on my research and playing:

You can:
  • Canvas groups work well for assigning work. You can create group sets for different investigations and various components of the process can be submitted as a group (one person submits, you see that for all group members).
  • Group member scores can be linked together (all the same) or individualized (based on teamwork, etc).
  • When assigning Peer Review in Canvas, you can exclude groups from receiving a fellow members’ report.
  • Peer Review can be automatically set if you don’t mind random assignments.
You cannot:
  • Peer reviews cannot be assigned per group. As in, I cannot have all members of Group 1 get the same submissions to review.
  • There is no way to force group members to only review each other’s papers. You can allow Canvas to assign a review to a fellow group member, but it is still randomized across all groups.
  • You cannot receive individual submissions for a group assignment. A group assignment will submit one item for all group members.
Here’s what I would do in the meantime, without any customization:
  • Create groups in Canvas for the investigation steps. This way, groups can submit a single proposal, data, and draft (or outline) report. You can give feedback on that group effort before students begin the individual writing process.
  • Create a normal assignment for the draft paper.
    • Make it a Website URL submission and ask students to submit a Comment-able Google Doc for anyone in ECS with the link. This step is important! When the review is assigned, the reviewer needs to be able to see the paper.
    • Personally, I would set this as a completion score because we want the students to have a chance to revise before submitting a final copy.
  • Click on Peer Review and add the following options:
    • Automatically Assign Peer Reviews
    • N number of reviews based on your groups (hopefully only 2-3)
    • Set a date after the due date. This makes sure all submissions are in (hopefully) before reviews are assigned.
    • You may be wondering about Anonymous Reviews. This is hard. If you want to jigsaw (see below) a group activity to discuss the paper, groups need to know whose paper they have. Here are a couple ideas:
      • Students create a pseudonym (Anonymous Gopher, etc, like Google Docs)
      • Student ID numbers
      • Color code
      • Playing card
      • Etc...
      • Note that if they leave comments in Google, the reviewer’s name will show. Anonymous feedback is only maintained in the Canvas submission comment box.
  • Once the reviews are completed, you will see the assignment in your SpeedGrader along with the reviewer comments.
  • Create another assignment for the final draft. Have students submit as you normally would.
You could use a simple jigsaw activity to mix groups up and have short discussions. If everyone has two or three papers to review, they can mix up and read/discuss each paper in a short 5-7 minute discussion. Each person can leave their flavor of comment based on that discussion for the writer to incorporate.
Community Participant

I haven't tried this myself, but could you use virtual sections (one per group) to accomplish something like this? That is, just download the group membership (which is now possible) and then re-upload it to automatically populate as many sections as there are groups. Once each group is it's own virtual section, I think you could ensure that group members would only review each others work (i.e., only members within the same section). In the worst-case scenario, you might have to create dummy assignments for each section, but I THINK you could do it all within a single assignment assigned to "all" of the sections simultaneously. 

Just a thought as something to investigate.