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Effective feedback: Redraft and redo

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What’s the idea?

Redraft and redo is a type of feedback that requires students to act. They must return to a piece of work to edit and improve specific areas or, where useful, the whole piece.

What does it mean?

Redraft and redo is the first in a series of five actions that students can do after receiving their work back. By editing and improving one piece of work until it is excellent, students focus on specific aspects of feedback and achieve a higher standard than they might have before. This helps them to produce their best work and builds both resilience and high expectations.

What are the implications for teachers?

Ensure that the actions you ask students to take are specific and clearly defined. Avoid asking them to improve without giving explicit guidance for how this can be achieved. It’s vital that students understand how to improve before moving forward – copying old work is a waste of your time and theirs.

Make sure the scale of the task is manageable for you and your students – you might not have time to mark a long essay twice! Choose work to redraft and redo strategically or consider individual sections or paragraphs rather than the whole piece (see our Compact Guide on selective marking).

Some examples of redraft and redo prompts include:

  • ‘Redraft this piece of work/paragraph/graph….  by doing X, adding Y, correcting Z…’
  • ‘Redo this piece of work, but this time make sure you include X, measure Y, state Z using the correct terminology.’
  • ‘Redo your graph but this time make sure you use exact measurements to show scale accurately.’
  • ‘Redraft your first paragraph by adding a summary of your conclusion and references to the text.’

Want to know more?

  • Berger R (2003) An Ethic of Excellence. Portsmouth NH, USA: Heinemann.
  • Sherrington T (2017) Five ways of giving effective feedback as actions. Available at: https://teacherhead.com/2017/12/18/fiveways-of-giving-effective-feedback-as-actions/ (accessed on 26 October 2018).
  • Wiliam D (2016) Leadership for Teacher Learning: Creating a Culture Where All Teachers Improve so that Students Succeed. West Palm Beach, FL: Learning Science International.
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