Skip to the content

Annotation an effective device for student feedback: a critical review of the literature

Ball, E 2009, 'Annotation an effective device for student feedback: a critical review of the literature' , Nurse Education in Practice, 7 (3) , pp. 295-307.

[img] PDF - Published Version
Restricted to Repository staff only

Download (320kB) | Request a copy


The paper examines hand-written annotation, its many features, difficulties and strengths as a feedback tool. It extends and clarifies what modest evidence is in the public domain and offers an evaluation of how to use annotation effectively in the support of student feedback (Marshall 1998; Wolfe & Nuewirth 2001; Diyanni 2002; Wolfe 2002; Liu 2006; Feito & Donohue 2008; Ball 2009a; Ball et al 2009b). Although a significant number of studies examine annotation, this is largely related to on-line tools and computer mediated communication and not hand-written annotation as comment, phrase or sign written on the student essay to provide critique. Little systematic research has been conducted to consider how this latter form of annotation influences student learning and assessment or, indeed, helps tutors to employ better annotative practices (Storch & Tapper, 1997; Juwah et al, 2004; Jewitt & Kress, 2005). There is little evidence on ways to heighten students’ self-awareness when their essays are returned with annotated feedback (Storch & Tapper, 1997). The literature review clarifies forms of annotation as feedback practice and offers a summary of the challenges and usefulness of annotation.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Annotation; feedback; summative assessment
Themes: Subjects / Themes > R Medicine > RT Nursing
Subjects / Themes > L Education > L Education (General)
Health and Wellbeing
Subjects outside of the University Themes
Schools: Colleges and Schools > College of Health & Social Care
Colleges and Schools > College of Health & Social Care > School of Nursing, Midwifery, Social Work & Social Sciences
Journal or Publication Title: Nurse Education in Practice
Publisher: Elsevier
Refereed: Yes
ISSN: 1471-5953
Related URLs:
Depositing User: Dr Elaine Ball
Date Deposited: 21 Jul 2010 12:47
Last Modified: 30 May 2014 15:20
References: Ainsworth, L and Viegut D., 2006. Common Formative Assessments: How to Connect Standards-Based Instruction and Assessment. Sage, London Allan J and Clarke K., 2007. Nurturing Supportive Learning Environments in Higher Education Through the Teaching of Study Skills: To Embed or Not to Embed? International Journal of Teaching and Learning in Higher Education. 19, 1, 64-76 oxforddictionarys. 2008 annotation. [online] Available at: [Accessed 29 November 2008] Ball, E. 2009a. A Participatory Action Research Study on Handwritten Annotation Feedback and Its Impact on Staff and Students. Systemic Practice and Action Research. 22, 2, 111-124. Ball, E. 2009b. Annotation is a Valuable Tool to Enhance Learning and Assessment in Student Essays. Nurse Education Today. 29,3, 284-291. Barney, S. A., 1991. Annotation and Its Texts. (Ed). New York, OUP Boston, C., 2002. The concept of formative assessment. Practical Assessment, Research & Evaluation. 8:9, 1-5. Paper retrieved March 29th, 2006, from ERIC database Boud, D., 1995. Assessment and Learning: contradictory or complementary? In P. Knight (Ed.) Assessment for learning in higher education. London, Kogan Page Broecke, S and Nicholls, T., 2007. Ethnicity and degree attainment. London, Department for Education and Skills Brown, G., Bull, J., and Pendlebury P., 1997. Assessing student learning in higher education. London, Kogan Page Crisp, B. R., 2007. Is it worth the effort? How feedback influences students’ subsequent submission of assessable work. Assessment & Evaluation in Higher Education. 32, 5, 571–581 Crook, C., Gross, H and Dymott, R., 2006. Assessment relationships in higher education: the tension of process and practice. British Educational Research Journal. 32 (1). pp. 95-114 Derrida, J., 1982. Margins of Philosophy. (Trans., Alan Bass). Chicago University Press, Chicago, USA Diyanni, R., 2002. One Hundred Great Essays. New York, Addison-Wesley Dornan, T., Brown, M., Powley, D and Hopkins, M., 2004. A technology using feedback to manage experience based learning. Medical Teacher. 26, 8, 736-738 Duff, P. A., 2007. Problematising academic discourse socialisation. Learning discourses and the Discourses of Learning. 1, 1, 1-18 Elton, L and Johnston, B., 2002. Assessment in Universities: a critical review of research. CHERI, OUP Feito, A., and Donahue, P., 2008. Minding the Gap Annotation as preparation for discussion. Arts and Humanities in Higher Education. 7(3) 295-307 Freshwater, D and Rolfe, G., 2004. Deconstructing evidence-based practice. Oxon, Routledge Harrison, N., 2006. The impact of negative experiences, dissatisfaction and attachment on first year undergraduate withdrawal. Journal of Further and Higher Education. 30(4), 377-391 Hyland, P., 2000. Learning from Feedback on Assessment, in The Practice of University History Teaching. A., Booth and P. Hyland (Eds). Manchester, MUP Jewitt, C and Kress, G., 2005. English in classrooms: only write down what you need to know: annotation for what? English in Education. 39, 1, 5-18 Jenkins, J., 2005. ‘Policy On Provision of Feedback On Assessed Work,’ School of Nursing, University of Salford. K: \School of Nursing\New Structure-Nursing Filestore\Quality\School Policies\Feedback\2005\Policy on the Provision of Feedback on Assessed Work 7/doc Juwah, C., Macfarlane-Dick, D., Matthew, B., Nicol, D., Ross, D., and Smith, B., 2004. “Enhancing student learning through effective formative feedback.” The Higher Education Academy. 1-40 Kleiman, P., 2002. Design for Learning: Some Notes on the Principles of Good Design Imaginative. Curriculum Project Development Paper. Learning & Teaching Support Network (LTSN) Generic Centre. 1-8 Knight, P., 2006. The local practices of assessment. Assessment & Evaluation in Higher Education. 31, 4, 435-452 Kristeva, J., 1986. The Kristeva Reader. (Ed. Toril Moi). Oxford, Basil Blackwell Lamont, C., 1997. Annotating a Text: Literary Theory and Electronic Hypertext, in K. Sutherland (Ed.). Electronic Text: Investigations in Method and Theory. Oxford, Clarendon press Lea, M and Street, B., 2002. Student writing and staff feedback in higher education: an academic literacies approach, in M. Lea, B, Stierer (Eds). Student writing in higher education: new contexts. Buckingham, OUP Liu, K., 2006. Annotation As An Index To Critical Writing. Urban Education. 41: 192-207 Lunsford, A. A and Ruszkiewicz J. J., 1999. The Presence of Others. (3rd ed). New York, St Martins Marshall, C. M., 1998(a). The Future of Annotation in a Digital (paper) World.. Presented at the 35th Annual GLSLIS Clinic: Successes and Failures of Digital Libraries. June 20-24. University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, March 24. 1-20 Marshall, C. M., 1998(b). Toward an ecology of hypertext annotation. Hypertext. Proceedings of the ninth ACM conference on Hypertext and hypermedia. June 20-24. Pittsburgh Pennsylvania, US. 40-49 Martens, R and Dochy, F., 1997. “Assessment and Feedback as Student Support Devices.” Studies in Educational Evaluation. 23, 3, 257-273 McColly W., 1965. The Dimensions of Composition Annotation Oswego. New York, State University of New York Nicol, D and Macfarlane-Dick, D., 2006. Formative assessment and self-regulated learning: a model and seven principles of good feedback practice. Studies in Higher Education. 31, 199-218 Mutch, A., 2003. Exploring the practice of feedback to students. Active Learning in Higher Education. 4:1, 24-38 Nesbit, P and Burton, S., 2006. Student justice perceptions following assignment feedback. Assessment & Evaluation in Higher Education. 31:6, 655-670 Nokelainen, P., Miettinen, M., Kurhila, J., Floréen, P, and Tirri, H., 2005. A shared document-based annotation tool to support learner-centred collaborative learning. British Journal of Educational Technology. 36:5, 757-770 Orsmond, P., Merry, S and Callaghan A., 2004. Implementation of a formative assessment model incorporating peer and, self assessment. Innovations in Education and Teaching International. 41(3), 273-290 Paley, J., 2006. Evidence and Expertise. Nursing Inquiry. 13, 82-93 Patterson, E., 1996. The analysis and application of peer assessment in nurse education, like beauty, is in the eye of the beholder. Nurse Education Today. 16, 49-55 Porter-O’Donnell, C., 2004. Beyond the Yellow Highlighter: Teaching Annotation Skills to Improve Reading Comprehension. English Journal. 82-89. Price, B., 1997. “Defining Quality Student Feedback in Distance Learning.” Journal of Advanced Nursing. 26, 154-160 Prowse, S Duncan, N; Hughes, J and Burke, D., 2007. ‘. . . do that and I’ll raise your grade’. Innovative module design and recursive. Feedback Teaching in Higher Education. 12, 4, 437-445 Race, P., 1995. What has Assessment Done for Us-and to Us? In P. Knight (Ed.) Assessment for Learning in Higher Education. London, Kogan Page Race, P., 2001. The lecturer’s toolkit. 2nd edn. London, Kogan Page Radecki, P.M., and Swales, J. M., 1988. ESL student reaction to written comments on their written work. System. 16, 355-365 Ramage, J. D., and Bean, J. C., 1995. Writing Arguments (3rd ed.) Needham Heights MA: Allyn and Bacon Reid, J., 1994. Responding to ESL students’ texts: The Myths of Appropriation. TESOL Quarterly. 28, 273-292 Richardson, John T. E., 2005. Instruments for obtaining student feedback: a review of the literature. Assessment & Evaluation in Higher Education. 30, 4, 387-415. Stefani, L., 2004. “Assessment of Student Learning: promoting a scholarly approach.” Learning and Teaching in Higher Education. Issue 1, 51-66 Storch N & Tapper J 1997. Student Annotations: What NNS and NS University Students Say About Their Own Writing. Journal of Second Language Writing. 6(3): 245 - 265 Struyven, K., Dochy, F and Janssens, S., 2005. Students’ perceptions about evaluation and assessment in higher education: a review. Assessment and Evaluation in Higher Education. 30(4), 325-341 Trotter, E., 2006. Student perceptions of continuous summative assessment. Assessment & Evaluation in Higher Education. 31(5), 501-521 Urquhart, V. A and McIver, M. C., 2005. Teaching writing in the content areas. Alexandria, VA: Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development Weaver, M. R., 2006. Do students value feedback? Student perceptions of tutors’ written responses. Assessment & Evaluation in Higher Education. Vol. 31: 3, 379-394 Wilson, D. M., 1991. “Improving feedback on student papers: a quantitative method which aids marking and gives valid feedback.” Nurse Education Today. 11 53-56 Wolfe, J. L., 2002. Marginal Pedagogy: How Annotated Texts Affect Writing-From-Source Texts. Written Communication. 19, 2, 297-333 Wolfe, J. L and Nuewirth, C. M., 2001. “From the Margins to the Centre: the future of annotation.” Journal of Business and Technical Communication. Vol.15 No.3 333-371 Wolfe, J. L., 2000. Effects of Annotations on Student Readers and Writers. Proceedings of the Fifth ACM Conference on Digital Libraries. San Antonio, ACM Press Yang, S. J. H., Chen, I. Y. L., and Shao, N., 2004. Ontology Enabled Annotation and Knowledge Management for Collaborative Learning in Virtual Learning Community. Educational Technology & Society. 7:4, 70-81 Young, P., 2000. “I might as well give up”: self-esteem and mature students’ feelings about feedback on assignments. Journal of Further and Higher Education. 24:3, 409-418 Wilding, J and Andrews, B., 2004. Life goals, approaches to study and performance in an undergraduate cohort. British Journal of Educational Psychology.76 (4). 171-182 Wray J, Brettle A, Long A.F and Grant, M. J., 2001. What the papers say about multi-professional working - a review. Report HCPRDU, University of Salford

Actions (login required)

Edit record (repository staff only) Edit record (repository staff only)


Downloads per month over past year