Using audio feedback in Turnitin

Dr Jonathan Pugh

School of Geography, Politics and Sociology

Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences

What did you do and why?

Dr Jonathan Pugh has used the audio comments option in Turnitin to provide feedback on essays to his students on the second-year Globalisation and Development module. As a person with a disability, who cannot type for prolonged periods, Dr Pugh used this feature to timely mark a large number of essays.

In the video below, Dr Pugh explains why and how he used the voice comments in Turnitin.

Did it work? Benefits and challenges of audio feedback

Dr Pugh says that the main reason for using audio feedback was his disability; however, he recommends it to other colleagues. Marking a large number of essays, with long hours spent at the desk can be physically challenging to everyone, and voice comments allow diversifying the pressure on the body. Moreover, students get a richer feedback experience – more detailed feedback with the marker’s intonation.

Especially when teaching online, audio feedback is a valuable interaction with the instructor and brings the “human touch” to the online assessment and marking. While another year of delivering audio feedback would give better insights into students’ reception of this technology, the anecdotal feedback from students has been encouraging.

Dr Pugh also admits that there can be challenges with using new technology for the first time, or a temptation to re-record the files; the tone of voice can show the enthusiasm of the instructor about a particularly well-written piece of work, but also tiredness.

Watch the short video below to learn more.

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