Advice for Action with Automatic Feedback Systems

  • Denise WhitelockEmail author
Part of the Lecture Notes on Data Engineering and Communications Technologies book series (LNDECT, volume 11)


This Chapter reviews the role of feedback in supporting student learning. It highlights some of the problems that persist with providing meaningful feedback, which should preferably take the form of providing advice, that can be actioned by the student. It then discusses the progress made with automatic feedback through a number of case studies which include the OpenEssayist, Open Comment and OpenMentor computer assisted feedback systems. Findings suggest feedback that provides socio-emotive support to students, together with recognising their effort, in turn encourages the student to continue working on a problem. The use of automatic hints also moves the feedback closer to “Advice for Action ”. Building tools with automatic feedback to support both students and tutors can relieve some of the continual pressure on staff resources and three case studies are presented below that address this issue.


Automatic feedback Advice for action OpenMentor Essay feedback 



The OpenEssayist Research was supported by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC, grant numbers EP/J005959/1 & EP/J005231/1). Thanks are also due to the SAFeSEA team who produced OpenEssayist, namely John Richardson, Alison Twiner, Debora Field and Stephen Pulman. I would also like to thank Stuart Watt and the JISC for their support in the development of OpenMentor . Stuart Watt deserves special thanks as he also developed the Open Comment system.


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.The Open UniversityMilton KeynesUK

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