Over the course of 13 weeks, I have being developing a blog with a focus on inquiry-based learning. During this time I have received valuable formative feedback. In the early stages of my blog development and learning journey, I gained some valuable feedback from Jo. She commented on my blog post Compare and Contrasting Proquest and A+ Education Databases. She commented that it would be interesting to see some specific examples of particular resources that I discovered using the search method demonstrated in the post through either hyperlinks or screen capture images. I received similar valuable feedback from Sarah, who felt it would help to enhance my web post and get my ideas across to my blog readers. From the feedback I edited my post to include screen capture images of search result pages from Proquest and A+ Education. I feel the addition of images has enhanced and strengthened my post. While I did not include hyperlinks in my post Compare and Contrasting Proquest and A+ Education Databases, I have included them I many of my other posts.
Throughout the 12 weeks, I have received much positive feedback from Jo and Sara, thus allowing me to feel pleased and confident about my work and to know I was heading in the right direction. Through their comments, they commented on areas that they particularly enjoyed, such as feedback from Jo on my post Getting to Know Eric Database. She commented that she liked the way I had introduced several of my posts outlining some information about the different databases I had been exploring. Sara gave warm feedback on my post Action Taken After Questionnaire One and Two through her comment that I had some great ideas in order to improve the ILA. She liked the idea of giving students a copy of the ISP, especially the very student-friendly copy I had included.
I gained much positive, formative and constructive feedback from my lecturer that I have used to strengthen and improve my blog posts. Without realising it, I had included comments made by the teacher I was observing in one of my posts. As it is important that I keep the teacher’s identity anonymous I edited the post and removed her comments. In the final stages of my blog development, my lecturer brought to my attention that I had not brought the unit of work alive. This meant I would have to include comments made by the students about the work and include clips of their questionnaires to help the blog viewers develop a sense of context. As a result, I developed a post where I discussed students’ work, included examples of the type of work they completed and used clips of students’ comments in their questionnaires and quotes from a small group interview to help bring the unit of work alive. My lecturer commented that one of my graphs used in my data analysis was not created properly. She commented that it was visually very confusing. She suggested I recreate my graph so factual statements and explanation statements were juxtaposed, as this would help the data “talk to each other.” A simple graph recreation and edit of my page Uncharted Waters: Method, results and recommendations rectified the visually very confusing graph.
While I received much positive and constructive feedback, I also gave positive and formative feedback I felt would aid in strengthening and enhancing Jo’s blog posts and Sara’s blog posts. For Jo, I commented on three of her posts – Having a Go at Proquest and Eric Databases, A reflection – Comparison of My Inquiry Journey Using Kuhlthau’s Information Seeking Process and A Look at Inquiry Learning Within My Information Learning Activity. In the first post I commented that perhaps she could use related search terms that accompany the information in the bibliographic data or the reference list of articles. In her second post I asked a few questions in relation to her ISP and thought the questions would help enhance her post. I asked if she had met the requirements of the assignment? And did she feel off track? In Jo’s third post I gave some editorial feedback and asked a few questions. Did students make connections to the real world? And did students make conclusions from her ILA? For Sara, I commented on two of her blog posts, An Afternoon With Eric and Action Taken after Questionnaire One and Two. For her first post I suggested using the * butted up to the end of root words. This instructed Eric to search for the word with the * butted up against it, plus any words derived from the root. It saved me much time searching and I felt it was a great tip I should share. I asked Sara several questions in her second post. I asked if the lessons she had given her students to help search the internet for information had assisted students in finding relevant information about their chosen topic? And now that you know your students need help, what will you do in future units of work? I also suggested that perhaps she design a small unit of work where search and retrieval were the unit focus.
Through giving and receiving feedback, I have been able to strengthen and enhance my blog and give feedback to fellow students I feel would assist to enhance and strengthen their blogs. Through the feedback I have been able to view the weaknesses of my blog I was blind to before. I am appreciative of the feedback I have received and as a valuable exercise; I will implement it more often in my future teaching pedagogy, not only for self-improvement, but also for students to learn the benefits of giving and receiving feedback.