Peer Review

Peer Review

About this Strategy Guide

This strategy guide explains how you can employ peer review in your classroom, guiding students as they offer each other constructive feedback to improve their writing and communication skills.

Research Basis

Strategy in practice, related resources.

Peer review refers to the many ways in which students can share their creative work with peers for constructive feedback and then use this feedback to revise and improve their work. For the writing process, revision is as important as drafting, but students often feel they cannot let go of their original words. By keeping an audience in mind and participating in focused peer review interactions, students can offer productive feedback, accept constructive criticism, and master revision. This is true of other creative projects, such as class presentations, podcasts, or blogs. Online tools can also help to broaden the concept of “peers.” Real literacy happens in a community of people who can make meaningful connections. Peer review facilitates the type of social interaction and collaboration that is vital for student learning.

Peer review can be used for different class projects in a variety of ways:

  • Teach students to use these three steps to give peer feedback: Compliments, Suggestions, and Corrections (see the Peer Edit with Perfection! Handout ). Explain that starting with something positive makes the other person feel encouraged. You can also use Peer Edit With Perfection Tutorial to walk through the feedback process with your students.
  • Provide students with sentence starter templates, such as, “My favorite part was _________ because __________,” to guide students in offering different types of feedback. After they start with something positive, have students point out areas that could be improved in terms of content, style, voice, and clarity by using another sentence starter (“A suggestion I can offer for improvement is ___________.”). The peer editor can mark spelling and grammar errors directly on the piece of writing.
  • Teach students what constructive feedback means (providing feedback about areas that need improvement without criticizing the person). Feedback should be done in an analytical, kind way. Model this for students and ask them to try it. Show examples of vague feedback (“This should be more interesting.”) and clear feedback (“A description of the main character would help me to imagine him/her better.”), and have students point out which kind of feedback is most useful. The Peer Editing Guide offers general advice on how to listen to and receive feedback, as well as how to give it.
  • For younger students, explain that you need helpers, so you will show them how to be writing teachers for each other. Model peer review by reading a student’s piece aloud, then have him/her leave the room while you discuss with the rest of the class what questions you will ask to elicit more detail. Have the student return, and ask those questions. Model active listening by repeating what the student says in different words. For very young students, encourage them to share personal stories with the class through drawings before gradually writing their stories.
  • Create a chart and display it in the classroom so students can see the important steps of peer editing. For example, the steps might include: 1. Read the piece, 2. Say what you like about it, 3. Ask what the main idea is, 4. Listen, 5. Say “Add that, please” when you hear a good detail. For pre-writers, “Add that, please” might mean adding a detail to a picture. Make the chart gradually longer for subsequent sessions, and invite students to add dialogue to it based on what worked for them.
  • Incorporate ways in which students will review each other’s work when you plan projects. Take note of which students work well together during peer review sessions for future pairings. Consider having two peer review sessions for the same project to encourage more thought and several rounds of revision.
  • Have students review and comment on each other’s work online using Nicenet , a class blog, or class website.
  • Have students write a class book, then take turns bringing it home to read. Encourage them to discuss the writing process with their parents or guardians and explain how they offered constructive feedback to help their peers.

Using peer review strategies, your students can learn to reflect on their own work, self-edit, listen to their peers, and assist others with constructive feedback. By guiding peer editing, you will ensure that your students’ work reflects thoughtful revision.

  • Lesson Plans
  • Strategy Guides

Using a collaborative story written by students, the teacher leads a shared-revising activity to help students consider content when revising, with students participating in the marking of text revisions.

After analyzing Family Pictures/Cuadros de Familia by Carmen Lomas Garza, students create a class book with artwork and information about their ancestry, traditions, and recipes, followed by a potluck lunch.

Students are encouraged to understand a book that the teacher reads aloud to create a new ending for it using the writing process.

While drafting a literary analysis essay (or another type of argument) of their own, students work in pairs to investigate advice for writing conclusions and to analyze conclusions of sample essays. They then draft two conclusions for their essay, select one, and reflect on what they have learned through the process.

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peer review questions for creative writing

BOLDFACE 101: THE CREATIVE WRITING PEER REVIEW

Workshops are an integral and exciting part of the Boldface experience. At first, however, they can seem intimidating. Don’t worry! This week’s installment of Boldface 101 introduces you to the process of giving and receiving peer reviews.

First and foremost, we urge you to prepare in advance. Thinking deeply about your critiques and making meaningful comments is important. Your classmates are there for the same reasons you are—to improve their writing. Don’t dismiss your role as peer and colleague, what you say matters! We hope you’ll check out the following pointers on giving and receiving feedback.

Giving Feedback to Fellow Writers

The golden rule is universal. Treat your peers and their writing with care and respect. Take this part of the writers conference seriously. You wouldn’t like it if others were inconsiderate of you or your work, so be mindful of how you present your comments. Beyond that, requirements are flexible. Your workshop leader will provide guidance in advance regarding how they want you to approach the process, but here are a few best practices to consider in the meantime:

  • Avoid saying what you did or didn’t “like.”  These kinds of statements have more to do with opinion and less to do with what is or is not successful in a given piece of writing. You don’t always have to “like” something to see whether it’s worthwhile or whether it’s accomplishing its goal as technique or craft.
  • Provide constructive criticism AND reinforcement.  It’s always nice to hear what you ARE doing effectively as a writer. Remember to encourage your peers when you spot something you think is especially effective, rather than letting it go unsaid and focusing 100% of your critique on what still needs improvement.
  • Be specific.  Generic and vague comments aren’t very helpful in a creative writing workshop. Your peer review isn’t going to be useful unless it contains detailed analysis and examples of what is/isn’t working in a piece of writing. Make sure to be specific and elaborate on your ideas.
  • Check for author notes.  If your peer has asked for feedback on a specific issue, make sure to address their concerns!

peer review questions for creative writing

Don’t forget—you’ll be receiving feedback, too! Here are some things to remember when receiving constructive criticism:

  • It’s not personal.  So, don’t take it personally. We understand this is easier said than done, especially when it comes to your writing. But that’s just it. It’s your writing, not you, that’s being critiqued.
  • Listen actively and to understand.  In other words, don’t just give in to your first reaction, which may be purely defensive. Let your peers complete their thoughts and explain what they mean. Take some time to consider things before deciding whether to incorporate or leave out suggestions.
  • Stay open-minded.  You might receive some radical insights, but sometimes it’s helpful to try unexpected ideas! Perhaps your short story is the beginning of a novel, or a plot twist reveals itself. Writing is a magical process that can lead you down new paths if you let it. So, try to remain open to possibilities!
  • Ask questions!  If you don’t understand something, don’t hesitate to ask your group to clarify. That is, after all, why they’re there!
“Imagine spending the day at a coffeeshop filled with unique, passionate, intelligent writers who want to share their knowledge—and listen to you in kind. Now imagine doing that for five days in a row. That’s Boldface.” -Boldface 2017 Participant

We think you’ll find that meeting with the same group multiple times throughout the week makes for a close-knit and supportive environment. Hopefully, this brief guide to the creative writing workshop eliminates any uncertainties you may have. If not, let us know! Reach out anytime to  [email protected] , or better yet, get involved in the conversation on  Facebook ,  Twitter , and  Instagram !

Don’t forget to check out the rest of the Boldface blog for the scoop on our awesome visiting writers and other useful information. Happy writing (and reviewing)!

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Centering Classroom Values in Peer Writing Workshops

By structuring peer feedback processes with intention, teachers can help students develop reflection and communication skills.

Two students working on a laptop together

“What is more challenging for you—giving feedback or receiving feedback? Why do you think that is?”

I project this question on the board when students walk into our peer writing workshop. Along with helping them enter into the activity, it reveals the purpose driving our work: to become stronger at providing and receiving feedback—skills that translate beyond the classroom.

Peer workshops are some of the best days in our classroom. Below, I share practices I’ve found effective when facilitating these interactions in the writing classroom, transferable across units and contexts.

Teacher Preparation

There are many approaches to peer feedback, but over the years I’ve found two priorities key in the planning stage:

  • Being intentional about the piece of writing students share. Less is more. Setting constraints for shorter pieces saves time on feedback day. And having the first peer workshop take place with creative or narrative writing allows students to get to know each other, as opposed to analytical or more standardized prompts.
  • Establishing classroom values around growth and generosity. We introduce and reflect upon classroom core beliefs at the start of the year, centering these values. We circle back to them frequently; very intentionally, our classroom environment becomes a collaborative one—a critical precursor to peer workshops. 

I also give students time in class to plan and write pieces they will workshop. Giving them time helps them feel confident and prepared and allows them to get support in person if needed.

Pre-Workshop Reflection

No matter how prepared students feel, they will likely also feel some anxiety on workshop day—a natural part of sharing work with others.

I begin by having students go through these four norms as a class, selecting one they want to prioritize and sharing their selection with their group members:

  • Generosity: Assuming 100 percent in your peers and giving 100 percent as a result in terms of investment and feedback.
  • Curiosity: Entering into the space with a willingness to learn from the writing and feedback of those around you .
  • Growth: Prioritizing how you can grow, not only in your own writing but also in receiving and providing feedback.
  • Perspective: Valuing and engaging with how your own way of seeing things may be different than others’.

By talking through these norms and sharing priorities, students feel a sense of ownership and intentionality entering into workshopping—and practice important real-life self-advocacy skills.

As we begin the workshop, I have students attach a template to their draft for peers to fill out, by hand or digitally, thereby structuring feedback. Our template is built around Marisa Thompson’s close-reading TQE method , with students recording thoughts and questions as they read, noting the most important line and describing why, then noting an epiphany or major takeaway.

Next, students write their own “driving question” at the top of the feedback template—what do they want those reading their piece to focus on, or what are they most curious about regarding others’ perspectives? Naming the focus area you’d most like feedback on is another element of self-advocacy.

Finally, students share digital drafts, asking reviewers to make copies so that writers can’t see the feedback process as it unfolds and are able to stay present with the draft they’re reviewing.

Silent Workshopping

I require the classroom to be 100 percent silent during the feedback stage. Students are typically in trios, which means they have two peer writing samples to review. We split the silent feedback time in half, and I tell them when to switch to the next draft. I ask them to hold clarifying questions and commentary to stay true to our norm of being 100 percent invested in the feedback being provided. 

For shorter texts (e.g., 200-to-300-word flash fiction), they get approximately 10 minutes per piece for reading and feedback, doing their best to complete the template. This becomes a really cool space too, as you can almost feel students drifting away from initial anxieties while losing themselves in the reading of each other’s work and the offering of intentional, constructive feedback.

Collaborative Workshopping

When it comes time to share feedback, I ask students to listen to feedback aloud without opening up their own text that is now filled with written feedback. Instead, they listen silently as both of their partners explain their noticings and wonderings first—a process designed to prioritize listening and being a willing recipient of feedback. 

A few tips I’ve acquired over the years make this a smoother process:

  • Outline the process and project instructions early on. For example, “Partner A will receive feedback from Partner B and Partner C, and then….” Once students dive in, it’s hard to slow them down!
  • Have feedback recipients take notes. This gives them a place to prepare follow-up questions and clarifications while actively listening to feedback—another “beyond the classroom” skill.
  • Allow groups to move at their own pace. I used to have minute-by-minute plans, but I’ve realized it’s much better to give each group space to move on only when they’re ready. To accommodate this, I have an independent reflection activity ready for them—that way, space is there for some groups to take longer than others. 

Significance

After feedback exchanges, we return to our norms, asking students to reflect on how they lived up to their intentions and what it was like to give and receive feedback—making this a dual-learning experience.

To me, the true value of this activity is what it does for the learning community. If a classroom relies only on the eyes of a single teacher to provide feedback and support for everyone within it, that really limits where the community can go as writers.

When we lean into peer feedback and collaborative learning as a purposeful foundation of the classroom, we create an entirely different ceiling as far as what students can achieve—and, in the process, equip students with feedback and reflection skills that go far beyond any specific writing skill.

Writers Workshop

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Conducting Peer Review

Why include peer review in your course.

Writers need feedback on their writing in order to improve. While instructor feedback is valuable, asking students to respond to each other’s writing provides additional opportunities for before-the-deadline feedback without increasing the instructor’s workload.

There are other benefits to peer review, as well: Peer review fosters students’ awareness of their own and others’ writing processes and approaches to the writing task. It gives students practice assessing their own and others’ writing and can reinforce course-specific criteria for writing assignments. Moreover, by both giving and receiving critical feedback, peer review teaches valuable skills like listening, evaluating, responding, and reflecting. Incorporating peer review in your class allows students to gain multiple perspectives on their writing, mimicking the process of peer review in professional knowledge production. Finally, having students engage in active dialogue about their intentions and ideas contributes to a collaborative classroom community.

But Don’t Most Students Hate Peer Review?

Peer review sometimes has a bad reputation. Some students (and instructors) view peer review as unproductive because they’ve received advice that’s too nice or too vague to be helpful, too critical to be constructive, or too focused on surface-level editing issues rather than content. You can overcome these negative perceptions by effectively structuring peer review as a regular course component.

What are Best Practices for Peer Review?

To ensure that peer review benefits both the writer and the reader and leads to substantial revision, instructors need to set ground rules. First, the basics:

  • Peer review can be conducted in or out of class, in-person or electronically
  • Peer review can be conducted in pairs or groups (many writing scholars recommend groups of 3-4)
  • Peer review can be conducted in any number of ways, from having students exchange papers in class to using peer review programs like SWoRD .
  • Peer review will need to happen more than once for students to gain practice and fluency
  • Peer review should be conducted at least several days before the final submission deadline, to give students enough time make large-scale revisions
  • Provide clear parameters and require a deliverable, e.g., a form / handout or a letter to the writer
  • Provide coaching and guidance to help students become better peer reviewers

Two female undergraduate students working on peer review.

Instructors should prepare students for peer review by discussing your expectations with the class: What makes feedback helpful or unhelpful? What meaningful feedback can writers take from their readers? What criteria should be used to review papers in this class? Consider providing examples or models of the kind of feedback you’d like students to provide.

Effective peer review is a guided, structured process. You’ll need to provide students with focused tasks or criteria. Encourage them to consider their drafts as “works-in-progress” and prompt them to use description rather than evaluative language. For example:

Instead of “Does the paper have a thesis statement” try “In just one to two sentences, state what position you think the writer is taking. Place stars around the sentence that you think presents the thesis.”

Instead of “Is the paper clearly organized?” try “On the back of this sheet, make an outline of the paper.”

Instead of “Is the paper clearly written” try “Highlight (in any color) any passages you had to read more than once to understand what the writer was saying.”

Students should also indicate at least one thing their peer’s writing is doing well. Students aren’t always aware of what’s working in their texts, so having peers provide positive feedback helps them gain insight into readers’ responses.

Instructors can foster metacognition and agency in the writing process by asking writers to prepare memos for their reviewers that contain a brief summary of the paper’s argument and questions pertaining to the current issues they’re struggling with, e.g., “How persuasive is my argument? What additional evidence could I incorporate? Does my paragraph on p. 2 seem too long?”

Finally, for peer review to work, instructors will need to teach revision and talk with students about how to handle constructive criticism. Often, students make changes related to “low-hanging fruit”—wrong words, missed citations—and avoid taking on larger revision challenges, like restructuring a paper or incorporating more persuasive evidence. Those larger changes can be daunting. Remind students that you care more about macro-level issues like content, structure, and genre conventions. You might ask students to write a memo or reflection summarizing their peer review feedback: What revision tasks will they prioritize? What will be most time-consuming? How will they take steps to address the most challenging or time-consuming revision tasks?

You might even share your own strategies for taking on large-scale revision tasks!

Additional Resources:

  • Includes general guidelines and a model for structuring peer review
  • Planning for peer review
  • Helping students offer effective feedback
  • Providing guidance on using feedback
  • Sample peer review sheets
  • Bean, J. (2011). Engaging Ideas: The Professor’s Guide to Integrating Writing, Critical Thinking, and Active Learning in the Classroom . 2 nd Ed., Chapter 15, “Coaching the Writing Process and Handling the Paper Load”

Related Links:

  • Responding to Student Writing
  • Incorporating Feedback

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peer review questions for creative writing

Engaging in Peer Review

There are times when we write in solitary and intend to keep our words private. However, in many cases, we use writing as a way of communicating. We send messages, present and explain ideas, share information, and make arguments. One way to improve the effectiveness of this written communication is through peer-review.

What is Peer-Review?

In the most general of terms, peer-review is the act of having another writer read what you have written and respond in terms of its effectiveness. This reader attempts to identify the writing's strengths and weaknesses, and then suggests strategies for revising it. The hope is that not only will the specific piece of writing be improved, but that future writing attempts will also be more successful. Peer-review happens with all types of writing, at any stage of the process, and with all levels of writers.

Sometimes peer-review is called a writing workshop.

What is a Writing Workshop?

Peer-review sessions are sometimes called writing workshops. For example, students in a writing class might bring a draft of some writing that they are working on to share with either a single classmate or a group, bringing as many copies of the draft as they will need. There is usually a worksheet to fill out or a set questions for each peer-review reader to answer about the piece of writing. The writer might also request that their readers pay special attention to places where he or she would like specific help. An entire class can get together after reading and responding to discuss the writing as a group, or a single writer and reader can privately discuss the response, or the response can be written and shared in that way only.

Whether peer-review happens in a classroom setting or not, there are some common guidelines to follow.

Common Guidelines for Peer-Review

While peer-review is used in multiple contexts, there are some common guidelines to follow in any peer-review situation.

If You are the Writer

If you are the writer, think of peer-review as a way to test how well your writing is working. Keep an open mind and be prepared for criticism. Even the best writers have room for improvement. Even so, it is still up to you whether or not to take the peer-review reader's advice. If more than one person reads for you, you might receive conflicting responses, but don't panic. Consider each response and decide for yourself if you should make changes and what those changes will be. Not all the advice you get will be good, but learning to make revision choices based on the response is part of becoming a better writer.

If You are the Reader

As a peer-review reader, you will have an opportunity to practice your critical reading skills while at the same time helping the writer improve their writing skills. Specifically, you will want to do as follows:

Read the draft through once

Start by reading the draft through once, beginning to end, to get a general sense of the essay as a whole. Don't write on the draft yet. Use a piece of scratch paper to make notes if needed.

Write a summary

After an initial reading, it is sometimes helpful to write a short summary. A well written essay should be easy to summarize, so if writing a summary is difficult, try to determine why and share that with the writer. Also, if your understanding of the writer's main idea(s) turns out to be different from what the writer intended, that will be a place they can focus their revision efforts.

Focus on large issues

Focus your review on the larger writing issues. For example, the misplacement of a few commas is less important than the reader's ability to understand the main point of the essay. And yet, if you do notice a recurring problem with grammar or spelling, especially to the extent that it interferes with your ability to follow the essay, make sure to mention it.

Be constructive

Be constructive with your criticisms. A comment such as "This paragraph was boring" isn't helpful. Remember, this writer is your peer, so treat him/her with the respect and care that they deserve. Explain your responses. "I liked this part" or "This section doesn't work" isn't enough. Keep in mind that you are trying to help the writer revise, so give him/her enough information to be able to understand your responses. Point to specific places that show what you mean. As much as possible, don't criticize something without also giving the writer some suggestion for a possible solution. Be specific and helpful.

Be positive

Don't focus only on the things that aren't working, but also point out the things that are.

With these common guidelines in mind, here are some specific questions that are useful when doing peer-review.

Questions to Use

When doing peer-review, there are different ways to focus a response. You can use questions that are about the qualities of an essay or the different parts of an essay.

Questions to Ask about the Qualities of an Essay

When doing a peer-review response to a piece of writing, one way to focus it is by answering a set of questions about the qualities of an essay. Such qualities would be:

Organization

  • Is there a clearly stated purpose/objective?
  • Are there effective transitions?
  • Are the introduction and conclusion focused on the main point of the essay?
  • As a reader, can you easily follow the writer's flow of ideas?
  • Is each paragraph focused on a single idea?
  • At any point in the essay, do you feel lost or confused?
  • Do any of the ideas/paragraphs seem out of order, too early or too late to be as effective as they could?

Development and Support

  • Is each main point/idea made by the writer clearly developed and explained?
  • Is the support/evidence for each point/idea persuasive and appropriate?
  • Is the connection between the support/evidence, main point/idea, and the overall point of the essay made clear?
  • Is all evidence adequately cited?
  • Are the topic and tone of the essay appropriate for the audience?
  • Are the sentences and word choices varied?

Grammar and Mechanics

  • Does the writer use proper grammar, punctuation, and spelling?
  • Are there any issues with any of these elements that make the writing unreadable or confusing?

Revision Strategy Suggestions

  • What are two or three main revision suggestions that you have for the writer?

Questions to Ask about the Parts of an Essay

When doing a peer-review response to a piece of writing, one way to focus it is by answering a set of questions about the parts of an essay. Such parts would be:

Introduction

  • Is there an introduction?
  • Is it effective?
  • Is it concise?
  • Is it interesting?
  • Does the introduction give the reader a sense of the essay's objective and entice the reader to read on?
  • Does it meet the objective stated in the introduction?
  • Does it stay focused on this objective or are there places it strays?
  • Is it organized logically?
  • Is each idea thoroughly explained and supported with good evidence?
  • Are there transitions and are they effective?
  • Is there a conclusion?
  • Does it work?

Peer-Review Online

Peer-review doesn't happen only in classrooms or in face-to-face situations. A writer can share a text with peer-review readers in the context of a Web classroom. In this context, the writer's text and the reader's response are shared electronically using file-sharing, e-mail attachments, or discussion forums/message boards.

When responding to a document in these ways, the specific method changes because the reader can't write directly on the document like they would if it were a paper copy. It is even more important in this context to make comments and suggestions clear by thoroughly explaining and citing specific examples from the text.

When working with an electronic version of a text, such as an e-mail attachment, the reader can open the document or copy/paste the text in Microsoft Word, or other word-processing software. In this way, the reader can add his or her comments, save and then send the revised document back to the writer, either through e-mail, file sharing, or posting in a discussion forum.

The reader's overall comments can be added either before or after the writer's section of text. If all the comments will be included at the end of the original text, it is still a good idea to make a note in the beginning directing the writer's attention to the end of the document. Specific comments can be inserted into appropriate places in the document, made clear by using all capital letters enclosed with parenthesis. Some word-processing software also has a highlighting feature that might be helpful.

Benefits of Peer Review

Peer-review has a reflexive benefit. Both the writer and the peer-review reader have something to gain. The writer profits from the feedback they get. In the act of reviewing, the peer-review reader further develops his/her own revision skills. Critically reading the work of another writer enables a reader to become more able to identify, diagnose, and solve some of their own writing issues.

Peer Review Worksheets

Here are a few worksheets that you can print out and use for a peer-review session.

Parts of an Essay

  • My audience is:
  • My purpose is:
  • The main point I want to make in this text is:
  • One or two things that I would appreciate your comments on are:
  • After reading through the draft one time, write a summary of the text. Do you agree with the writer's assessment of the text's main idea?
  • In the following sections, answer the questions that would be most helpful to the writer or that seem to address the most relevant revision concerns. Refer to specific places in their text, citing examples of what you mean. Use a separate piece of paper for your responses and comments. Also, write comments directly on the writer's draft where needed.
  • Is it effective? Concise? Interesting?
  • Is there a conclusion? Does it work?

Finally, what are two or three revision suggestions you have for the writer?

Qualities of an Essay

  • After reading through the draft one time, write a summary of the text.
  • In the following sections, answer the questions that would be most helpful to the writer or that seem to address the most relevant revision concerns. Use a separate piece of paper for your responses and comments. Also, write comments directly on the writer's draft where needed.
  • Is the connection between the support/evidence, main point/idea, and the overall point of the essay made clear?Is all evidence adequately cited?

Salahub, Jill . (2007). Peer Review. Writing@CSU . Colorado State University. https://writing.colostate.edu/guides/guide.cfm?guideid=43

peer review questions for creative writing

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How to Write a Peer Review

peer review questions for creative writing

When you write a peer review for a manuscript, what should you include in your comments? What should you leave out? And how should the review be formatted?

This guide provides quick tips for writing and organizing your reviewer report.

Review Outline

Use an outline for your reviewer report so it’s easy for the editors and author to follow. This will also help you keep your comments organized.

Think about structuring your review like an inverted pyramid. Put the most important information at the top, followed by details and examples in the center, and any additional points at the very bottom.

peer review questions for creative writing

Here’s how your outline might look:

1. Summary of the research and your overall impression

In your own words, summarize what the manuscript claims to report. This shows the editor how you interpreted the manuscript and will highlight any major differences in perspective between you and the other reviewers. Give an overview of the manuscript’s strengths and weaknesses. Think about this as your “take-home” message for the editors. End this section with your recommended course of action.

2. Discussion of specific areas for improvement

It’s helpful to divide this section into two parts: one for major issues and one for minor issues. Within each section, you can talk about the biggest issues first or go systematically figure-by-figure or claim-by-claim. Number each item so that your points are easy to follow (this will also make it easier for the authors to respond to each point). Refer to specific lines, pages, sections, or figure and table numbers so the authors (and editors) know exactly what you’re talking about.

Major vs. minor issues

What’s the difference between a major and minor issue? Major issues should consist of the essential points the authors need to address before the manuscript can proceed. Make sure you focus on what is  fundamental for the current study . In other words, it’s not helpful to recommend additional work that would be considered the “next step” in the study. Minor issues are still important but typically will not affect the overall conclusions of the manuscript. Here are some examples of what would might go in the “minor” category:

  • Missing references (but depending on what is missing, this could also be a major issue)
  • Technical clarifications (e.g., the authors should clarify how a reagent works)
  • Data presentation (e.g., the authors should present p-values differently)
  • Typos, spelling, grammar, and phrasing issues

3. Any other points

Confidential comments for the editors.

Some journals have a space for reviewers to enter confidential comments about the manuscript. Use this space to mention concerns about the submission that you’d want the editors to consider before sharing your feedback with the authors, such as concerns about ethical guidelines or language quality. Any serious issues should be raised directly and immediately with the journal as well.

This section is also where you will disclose any potentially competing interests, and mention whether you’re willing to look at a revised version of the manuscript.

Do not use this space to critique the manuscript, since comments entered here will not be passed along to the authors.  If you’re not sure what should go in the confidential comments, read the reviewer instructions or check with the journal first before submitting your review. If you are reviewing for a journal that does not offer a space for confidential comments, consider writing to the editorial office directly with your concerns.

Get this outline in a template

Giving Feedback

Giving feedback is hard. Giving effective feedback can be even more challenging. Remember that your ultimate goal is to discuss what the authors would need to do in order to qualify for publication. The point is not to nitpick every piece of the manuscript. Your focus should be on providing constructive and critical feedback that the authors can use to improve their study.

If you’ve ever had your own work reviewed, you already know that it’s not always easy to receive feedback. Follow the golden rule: Write the type of review you’d want to receive if you were the author. Even if you decide not to identify yourself in the review, you should write comments that you would be comfortable signing your name to.

In your comments, use phrases like “ the authors’ discussion of X” instead of “ your discussion of X .” This will depersonalize the feedback and keep the focus on the manuscript instead of the authors.

General guidelines for effective feedback

peer review questions for creative writing

  • Justify your recommendation with concrete evidence and specific examples.
  • Be specific so the authors know what they need to do to improve.
  • Be thorough. This might be the only time you read the manuscript.
  • Be professional and respectful. The authors will be reading these comments too.
  • Remember to say what you liked about the manuscript!

peer review questions for creative writing

Don’t

  • Recommend additional experiments or  unnecessary elements that are out of scope for the study or for the journal criteria.
  • Tell the authors exactly how to revise their manuscript—you don’t need to do their work for them.
  • Use the review to promote your own research or hypotheses.
  • Focus on typos and grammar. If the manuscript needs significant editing for language and writing quality, just mention this in your comments.
  • Submit your review without proofreading it and checking everything one more time.

Before and After: Sample Reviewer Comments

Keeping in mind the guidelines above, how do you put your thoughts into words? Here are some sample “before” and “after” reviewer comments

✗ Before

“The authors appear to have no idea what they are talking about. I don’t think they have read any of the literature on this topic.”

✓ After

“The study fails to address how the findings relate to previous research in this area. The authors should rewrite their Introduction and Discussion to reference the related literature, especially recently published work such as Darwin et al.”

“The writing is so bad, it is practically unreadable. I could barely bring myself to finish it.”

“While the study appears to be sound, the language is unclear, making it difficult to follow. I advise the authors work with a writing coach or copyeditor to improve the flow and readability of the text.”

“It’s obvious that this type of experiment should have been included. I have no idea why the authors didn’t use it. This is a big mistake.”

“The authors are off to a good start, however, this study requires additional experiments, particularly [type of experiment]. Alternatively, the authors should include more information that clarifies and justifies their choice of methods.”

Suggested Language for Tricky Situations

You might find yourself in a situation where you’re not sure how to explain the problem or provide feedback in a constructive and respectful way. Here is some suggested language for common issues you might experience.

What you think : The manuscript is fatally flawed. What you could say: “The study does not appear to be sound” or “the authors have missed something crucial”.

What you think : You don’t completely understand the manuscript. What you could say : “The authors should clarify the following sections to avoid confusion…”

What you think : The technical details don’t make sense. What you could say : “The technical details should be expanded and clarified to ensure that readers understand exactly what the researchers studied.”

What you think: The writing is terrible. What you could say : “The authors should revise the language to improve readability.”

What you think : The authors have over-interpreted the findings. What you could say : “The authors aim to demonstrate [XYZ], however, the data does not fully support this conclusion. Specifically…”

What does a good review look like?

Check out the peer review examples at F1000 Research to see how other reviewers write up their reports and give constructive feedback to authors.

Time to Submit the Review!

Be sure you turn in your report on time. Need an extension? Tell the journal so that they know what to expect. If you need a lot of extra time, the journal might need to contact other reviewers or notify the author about the delay.

Tip: Building a relationship with an editor

You’ll be more likely to be asked to review again if you provide high-quality feedback and if you turn in the review on time. Especially if it’s your first review for a journal, it’s important to show that you are reliable. Prove yourself once and you’ll get asked to review again!

  • Getting started as a reviewer
  • Responding to an invitation
  • Reading a manuscript
  • Writing a peer review

The contents of the Peer Review Center are also available as a live, interactive training session, complete with slides, talking points, and activities. …

The contents of the Writing Center are also available as a live, interactive training session, complete with slides, talking points, and activities. …

There’s a lot to consider when deciding where to submit your work. Learn how to choose a journal that will help your study reach its audience, while reflecting your values as a researcher…

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5 Peer Editing Strategies That Actually Work For Student Writers

When you ask your students to do peer review of their writing, do they stare at you with puzzled expressions?[…] Continue Reading

peer review questions for creative writing

When you ask your students to do peer review of their writing, do they stare at you with puzzled expressions? Here are five specific, hands-on approaches to peer conferencing that your students can really sink their teeth into.

Revising and editing a peer’s writing helps students learn to work as a team. It also gives them a fresh perspective on the proofreading process that will help them become more aware as they write and edit their own work. So, how can you make the peer review and editing process engaging, meaningful and fun for students? Here are five ways to get your students excited about peer review that actually work!

Neon-Revision

Highlighter Markers: 3 Colors Yellow – Mark the first word of each sentence. Questions to think about: Is there variety? Does the writer use transitional words? Are there any sentence fragments or run-ons? Pink – Highlight each adjective. Think about: Is the writing descriptive? Are the adjectives strong and specific? Blue – Highlight each verb. Think about: Are there too many “to be” verbs? Are the verb choices strong?

Students begin by highlighting specifics. Then, remind them to look at the big picture. After highlighting, they can make comparisons and add suggestions about what the student needs to add, adjust or remove. Proofreading will come later. First, they are helping a peer with sentence fluency and word choice—both descriptive language and “showing without telling.”

Teach students about the revision sandwich: compliment, suggest, correct. Remind students that when reviewing someone’s work, always start out by saying what they like about their work. Next, they make a suggestion and converse with their partner. Students ask questions. Then, they make corrections. By working together, they both learn from each other.

Writing-Wheel-Checklist

Click here for a PDF of the Writing Wheel Checklist.

Revising-Vs-Editing

Revising (The big picture) A dd words and sentences (be descriptive, capture all ideas). R emove words and sentences (be concise). M ove words and sentences (sentence fluency, organization). S ubstitute words and sentences (word choice, voice).

Editing (Conventions) C apitalization U sage (Verbs and nouns—does it make sense?) P unctuation S pelling

To help students with their understanding, say you use your arms and hand to hold your ear to help them remember that when you revise, you want the writing to sound better. If you punch a hole in a cup and look through it, you are using your eyes. This will help them remember that when you edit, you want your writing to look better. Students could even create a telescope made out of a paper cup and call it their Revisoscope! Check out Busy Bee Kids Crafts to see how to construct one. Once students know the difference between revising and editing and have the acronyms memorized, they can jot them down on a Post-it note when checking a peer’s writing. The acronyms will remind students of what to look for and how writing can be improved to make it look and sound better!

Proofreading-Spectacles

Print out Be the Editor task cards for students to use when revising and editing at each station. Students use Zaner-Bloser’s task cards to help them discuss and check one another’s writing! The task cards provide the children with prompts, making editing/revising easier. By concentrating on one writing trait at a time at each station, students will not feel overwhelmed. Along with the task cards, put out highlighters, sticky notes, colored pencils and other writing utensils to keep students interested.

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8 Peer Feedback, Revising, and Editing

Liza Long and Joel Gladd

In Stephen King’s  On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft , he famously suggests that an important part of any writer’s toolkit is to create space between an initial draft and a later read. Some of his novel manuscripts would sit for months in a room before getting a fresh look. It takes time to achieve the right perspective.

Waiting that long isn’t practical for student writers, but it does suggest a certain mindset for thinking about early drafts. For the most part, powerful writing doesn’t emerge spontaneously from a writer’s mind in a fitful night of inspiration. Instead, experienced writer’s build critical distance into their writing process and view early drafts as something to be reworked.

This chapter offers suggestions to how to achieve such critical distance, as well as what it means to rework—or revise—a rough draft.

Diagram of The Writing Process

How to receive good feedback from other writers

This section on Peer Review has been adapted from  Writing for Success , Chapter 8 , CC-BY-NC-SA 4.0.

After working so closely with a piece of writing, writers often need to step back and ask for a more objective reader. What writers most need is feedback from readers who can respond only to the words on the page. When they are ready, writers show their drafts to someone they respect and who can give an honest response about its strengths and weaknesses.

You, too, can ask a peer to read your draft when it is ready. After evaluating the feedback and assessing what is most helpful, the reader’s feedback will help you when you revise your draft. This process is called peer review.

You can work with a partner in your class and identify specific ways to strengthen each other’s essays. Although you may be uncomfortable sharing your writing at first, remember that each writer is working toward the same goal: a final draft that fits the audience and the purpose. Maintaining a positive attitude when providing feedback will put you and your partner at ease. The box that follows provides a useful framework for the peer review session.

Using Feedback Objectively

The purpose of peer feedback is to receive constructive criticism of your essay. Your peer reviewer is your first real audience, and you have the opportunity to learn what confuses and delights a reader so that you can improve your work before sharing the final draft with a wider audience (or your intended audience).

It may not be necessary to incorporate every recommendation your peer reviewer makes. However, if you start to observe a pattern in the responses you receive from peer reviewers, you might want to take that feedback into consideration in future assignments. For example, if you read consistent comments about a need for more research, then you may want to consider including more research in future assignments.

Using Feedback from Multiple Sources

You might get feedback from more than one reader as you share different stages of your revised draft. In this situation, you may receive feedback from readers who do not understand the assignment or who lack your involvement with and enthusiasm for it.

You need to evaluate the responses you receive according to two important criteria:

  • Determine if the feedback supports the purpose of the assignment.
  • Determine if the suggested revisions are appropriate to the audience.

Then, using these standards, accept or reject revision feedback.

How to leave good feedback for other writers

by Joel Gladd

When other writers ask us to give feedback, it’s tempting to mimic what so many English instructors have done to our essays: go through the rough draft with a red pen in hand (literal or figurative), marking grammatical errors, and crossing out words and sentences. Peer review, in this manner, feels like flogging. The more criticisms we can offer, the better we feel about our comments.

As the author of the draft being reviewed, how does that kind of feedback feel? Were you motivated to excel? Did you feel empowered to move forward and hone your expertise as a burgeoning writer? Some might, but most feel the opposite. An entirely critical (in the negative sense) approach to peer review might make the reviewer feel good about themselves, but it only demotivates the author.

Leaving feedback that is constructive, on target, and empowering is a life skill. It’s not only something you’ll do in writing courses. Nearly all professional jobs require employees and administrators to review one another, usually on a fairly consistent basis. Here are some tips for practice helpful feedback.

Start by noticing

Eli Review offers a high-quality platform for doing peer reviews, and part of its framework is inspired by Bill Hart-Davison’s strategy of Describe – Evalute – Suggest, summarized by this short video:

The Hart-Davison heuristic works in part because it encourages peer reviewers to begin by  noticing what the writer is doing (or attempting to do). This first step aims to be as neutral as possible. Language that notices might sound something like:

Overall, I see that you’re arguing ___________. Your essay opens by ___________.You then ___________. Finally, the last few paragraphs of the essay ___________.

Feedback that notices accurately “says back” to the writer what’s happening in the draft. This saying-back allows them to see how their draft is being received, in comparison with what they  thought  they were doing.

When evaluating, share criteria

The second move in Hart-Davison’s heuristic is to evaluate a draft by clearly sharing the criteria the peer reviewer is using. In a course, these criteria might be the course outcomes, or the more specific outcomes pertaining to that Unit. Perhaps an assignment expects a student to practice certain persuasive strategies; or, instead, an essay prompt might ask students to analyze something according to certain key concepts. The peer reviewer should read and offer feedback with those particular outcomes in mind. But there are also broader composition strategies that apply to nearly all writing situations. Writing for unity, coherence, cohesion, and style are important goals for all forms of writing. The second half of this chapter offers tips for tackling those areas.

Language that evaluates might sound something like this:

When reading your draft for coherence and cohesion, I notice a few areas that  feel unclear to me as a reader. On page 2, for example, ___________.

When making suggestions, remain constructive and ask questions

The final move in the Hart-Davison heuristic is to “make suggestions for success.” This is where a reader can begin to offer more targeted comments on what steps the writer can make to improve their draft. Even here, however, it’s important to think about how your feedback will be received. Tone matters. Notice the difference between the following two suggestions:

You make a lot of grammatical mistakes on page 3. Fix them.

I think I understand the main idea of your third paragraph, but it took me awhile to figure it out. Can you add a sentence or two earlier in the paragraph to make it more obvious?

The first example above sounds harsher. It’s also a little vague. As a writer, if I’m told I made a lot of grammatical mistakes, I’ll probably feel like I’m failing the English language more generally (that’s how it comes across). The second example avoids generalizing the identity of the writer because it’s highly targeted. The second example also has a more constructive tone because it frames the suggestion as a question rather than a demand (can you _______? vs. do __________!).

When completing your peer reviews, you don’t have to follow each stage of the Hart-Davison heuristic. Sometimes it might feel more appropriate to jump right to the Evaluation stage, for example. But your peer feedback should usually:

  • accurately “say back” to the writer what their draft is doing,
  • evaluate according to clearly defined criteria,
  • offer constructive and empowering feedback.

Peer feedback that does those three things, in one way or another, will result in better drafts  and   help you become a more effective collaborator in whatever environment you’re in.

The remainder of this chapter will offer revision strategies that both writers and peer reviewers should use to read an early draft critically.

Revising and Editing: Five Steps for Academic Writing

by Liza Long

Have your ever been told to “revise” your paper or to “edit” a peer’s paper? What do these words mean? Just as writing is a process, effective revising and editing also involves several steps. If you focus on one step at a time and take a break between steps, you’ll be able to make sure that your paper includes all of the required elements in the right order and that your academic style is confident and competent.

Step One: Revise for Unity

When we talk about unity in academic writing, we mean that all of the parts of the paper are unified with the thesis statement. When you revise for unity, you’re making sure that you have a clear thesis statement and that every part of the paper clearly supports the thesis statement in some way. Here are some questions to ask yourself as you revise for unity:

  • Does the paper meet the requirements of the assignment?​
  • Do all parts of the essay support the thesis statement?​
  • Does each paragraph have a clear topic sentence that relates to the thesis statement?​
  • Do all of the sentences in each paragraph relate to the topic sentence?​
  • Are your paragraphs too short?​ An effective paragraph has a clear topic sentence, 3-4 supporting sentences with specific, concrete details, and a concluding sentence.
  • Are your paragraphs too long?​ If you see a “monster” paragraph (a page in length or more), you may want to make sure that the paragraph has unity. Even though you may have written about a single topic, when your paragraph is too long, you have probably shifted your ideas about the topic. It’s okay to write two (or more) paragraphs about a single point.

Step Two: Revise for Adequate Support

In this step of the revision process, you’ll want to look at the ideas and sources (if required) that you use to support your thesis statement.

Here are some questions to ask yourself:

  • Does the paper use sources and/or relevant personal experiences to support the thesis?​ In some types of essays such as narrative essays, you’ll rely on your relevant personal experiences. In other types of essays such as exploratory research, you’ll rely more on sources. Argument essays often include a mix of sources and relevant personal experiences.
  • Are the sources/experiences used relevant to the thesis? Make sure that the examples you use clearly support your thesis statement. For example, if you are writing a paper about apples and you have an example that involves oranges as support, you may need to find a better source.​
  • Are direct quotes used? In papers where source use is required, a good rule of thumb is to make sure that direct quotes are no more than 10% of your overall paper. If your paper is 1000 words long, no more than 100 words should be directly quoted. If you directly quote, you must cite your source. Here is an example of a direct quote: “To be or not to be: That is the question” ( Hamlet 3.1).​
  • Does the paper paraphrase sources to support the thesis?​ When your teacher asks you to use sources, you will likely need to paraphrase, or put quotes into your own words. Even when you paraphrase, you should still cite your source. Here is a paraphrase of the direct quote above: Hamlet wonders whether existence has a point ( Hamlet 3.1)​.
  • Is there enough support? The answer to this question will depend on the assignment requirements. One way to make sure that your paper has enough support is to make sure that you have met the word or page count requirements for the assignment. If your paper is too short, you may want to consider adding more information from one of your sources or even finding another source.​ You could also consider adding relevant personal experience, depending on the assignment requirements.
  • Are your quotes and paraphrases all integrated into your paper? One of my students once coined the phrase “dead-dropped” for a quote that was dropped into a paper without context. You should check all of your direct quotes to make sure that you have introduced them appropriately. For example, you can use the phrase “According to X” to introduce a direct quote (where X is the author’s name).

Step Three: Revise for Coherence and Cohesion (Flow)

Once you’ve determined that your paper has unity and that you included adequate support, you’ll need to check the coherence or “flow” of your essay. When we talk about coherence in writing, we mean that the ideas flow logically and are connected and organized. One easy way to check this is to read your paper out loud. Do you find yourself stopping and starting, or wondering how one paragraph connects to the next? You may need to include transitions and other cues to help the reader follow your good ideas. Here are some questions to ask yourself as you revise for coherence:

  • Do you have an effective introduction and conclusion? An introduction gives you a chance to “hook” the reader, while a conclusion circles back to the introduction and explains “so what?” to the reader. Framing your essay in this way will help your reader to understand your ideas and your point.​ Because the introduction is so important, I often write the introduction to my essays last,   after I have set out all of my ideas and explained why they matter in a conclusion.
  • Does the paper flow logically? There are several ways that you can organize your ideas. Time or chronological order makes sense for narratives or for essays where historical context matters. Order of importance may work well for argument, where you can start with either your strongest or your weakest point (inductive or deductive reasoning).
  • Do you use transitions to connect your ideas? Transitional expressions are critical to your essay’s flow. ​
  • Does the paper “make sense”?​ This is one place that a peer review can really help you. Sometimes my ideas make perfect sense to me–but another reader may struggle to understand how I reach a conclusion or organize my argument. Pay attention to your readers’ comments here.
  • Are the paragraphs in the right order, or do you need to move things around to make them more clear?​ One of my own writing challenges is making sure that my paragraphs are in the right order.  Sometimes we get the idea that our paragraphs or even our sentences are “fixed” once we put them on paper, but nothing could be further from the truth! Think of your essay draft as a sandbox. You need ideas to work with, but you may need to shape those ideas differently once you have them on paper. One trick that I use myself is to print my papers out, cut them up into paragraphs, and try moving paragraphs around to see what flows best.

Step Four: Revise for Style

Once you’ve written an effective introduction, organized your paragraphs, and connected your ideas with transitional expressions, it’s time to focus on academic style. One common misconception is that academic style involves big fancy words and passive construction. Here is an example of what some students think of when we talk about academic style:

In the present instance, it must be construed that rhetorical constructs are most efficacious when these constructs elucidate the matter at hand.

And here is the same sentence written in plain English:

As we can see, rhetorical constructs are most effective when they clarify the point we are trying to make.

Remember that the goal of writing, first and foremost, is to communicate. It’s okay to use a fancy word once in a while (my own personal favorite is the verb  ameliorate , which means “to make things better”). But in general, it’s best to eschew obfuscation (avoid unnecessarily difficult terms) when writing for an academic audience.

Here are a few things to look for as you revise for academic style:

  • Academic (formal) tone—no “you” or “one” because these pronouns are broad and vague (but “I/we” are fine)​
  • Appropriate language​
  • Clichés and colloquial language​
  • Sentence variety (simple, compound, complex)​
  • Author voice ​
  • Active vs. passive construction​ I wrote the paper. YES!​ The paper was written by me. NO!​

Note: use a grammar checker as you revise for academic style. For example, the blue squiggly lines in Word’s grammar checker may indicate style problems.

Step Five: Edit for Mechanics/Format

All of us make minor grammar and spelling errors from time to time. And academic format can be tough at first, especially if your teacher requires a citation style that you aren’t used to. For example, I teach APA style in my rhetoric and composition classes because this is the citation and format style that most students will use in their majors. Here’s a quick checklist of things to look for in this final step of the revising and editing process:

  • Spelling (pay close attention to words that are often confused, such as “affect/effect”).​
  • Punctuation (pay special attention to commas).
  • Paragraph formatting–tab  indent and remove spaces before or after paragraphs.
  • Citation format. The OWL at Purdue is a good resource for both MLA and APA style.
  • Essay format–check your instructor’s requirements and ask for help if you aren’t sure about something.

As you can see, the editing and revising process is an important part of your overall writing process. By taking the time to focus on these five areas, you’ll ensure that your paper is polished and professional.

Write What Matters Copyright © 2020 by Liza Long and Joel Gladd is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License , except where otherwise noted.

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The power of peer editing: five questions to ask in the review.

peer review questions for creative writing

You’ve put in the work of researching, reading, writing and revising your paper. You’ve read it out loud and followed the assignment requirements.

You’re going strong, but there’s still another step you need to perfect your paper.

The peer edit.

Utilizing peer review in your writing process may not always be easy. You’re offering the paper that you’ve spent hours on up for critique.

But the peer edit can be so beneficial in enhancing your writing.

We may often think of “peer review” in terms of journal articles that have been analyzed and approved for accuracy. While your paper won’t require that same heightened, professional level of critique, bringing it to one of your peers—whether a classmate, a friend, a mentor—can enhance your research paper greatly.

Here, we share about the importance of incorporating a peer review process for both the author and the reviewer.

What is Peer Review?

A peer review of your research paper is different than the editing process that you go through. Rather than you going through each section, citation, argument in your paper, someone else does. A peer review involves handing it to someone you trust to allow them to read it and provide feedback to help make your paper the best it can be.

This is no small feat. It requires you to be vulnerable about what you’ve written. You need to be willing to accept mistakes you may make and be committed to accepting their suggestions as a way to grow in your writing and academic work.

Why is Peer Review Important?

This stage of the editing process is unique in that pulls in another perspective. Unlike you, your peer editor hasn’t been immersed in reading and research on your paper’s topic. They don’t know for certain what direction your paper will go or what your arguments are.

This new, objective perspective brings great value in revision.

A fresh set of eyes sees issues, gaps, mistakes and clouded arguments that you may have missed or had not thought of.

When your peer editor sits down and sifts through your paper, they provide both positive comments of what’s going well in the paper, as well as opportunities for improvement in areas that may be unclear. Their input helps make your paper better, if you choose to follow their recommendations.

If you’re working with a classmate, trade papers and review each other’s paper. This not only allows you to receive feedback on your paper, but it also develops your skills in providing feedback and looking for specific elements in a paper. You become a better editor. Whether you’re passing your paper off or reviewing a paper, your skills in writing can be greatly enhanced.

Questions to Ask in the Peer Review

In the peer review process, it’s helpful to have a plan of action in addressing the paper. Below are five questions that can help guide the process. Whether you’re the author or the reviewer (or both), these five questions can help focus your attention on key components of the assignment and enhance your skills.

Question 1: Is the Audience and Purpose of the Paper Clearly Established?

As a reviewer, one of the first things you want to be sure to notice in the paper is if you can figure out who the paper is addressing. The audience of the paper should be evident in reference to the topic, the tone of the paper and the type of language used.

For example, if the paper contains a lot of jargon and industry-specific language, you could infer that the audience would be familiar with those terms. If not, you may want to suggest using less jargon or explaining the terms used.

The purpose of the paper should also be very clear and straightforward to you as the new reader. The thesis statement, most often in the introduction, should clearly convey the purpose. But from the opening to the main arguments to the concluding statement, the purpose of the paper should be obvious.

As a peer reviewer, you can help the author determine if both the audience and purpose of the paper are clearly established early on in the paper.

Question 2: Does the Main Point Match the Thesis Statement?

One of the most important sentences in the paper is the author’s thesis statement. The location and type of thesis statement depends on the kind of essay or paper. However, as a general rule, thesis statements should be concise, straightforward and clear in addressing the main argument.

As a new reader, you as the reviewer can provide great insight into the clarity of the thesis.

The Writing Center at the University of North Carolina has a helpful article on crafting the perfect thesis. In this article, they suggest you ask the following questions of the thesis statement:

  • Can I find the thesis statement?
  • Is the thesis specific enough?
  • Does the thesis answer the “so what” question of the paper?
  • Does the rest of the paper support the thesis statement?

Peer review can help enhance a thesis statement by noticing gaps or questions in the argument.

Question 3: Does the Paper Flow Well?

When you’re the writer of a paper, you may work in sections. First, you tackle main point A, then move onto B, add in C and finish up with a conclusion.

When you’re a peer reviewer, you’re reading it for the first time all in one glance. With this new perspective, you can more easily identify gaps, questions and concerns in the structure of the paper.

Does point A leap to point B leaving little to hold on to? Note that the author should include a better transition. Are you left wondering what point C has to do with point A? Highlight the need for a better connection between main points.

With an objective, outside perspective, you can help the author improve the flow and clarity of their paper to communicate most effectively.

Question 4: What Areas Need Additional Description?

As a reviewer of a paper, you want to fully understand the content you’re reading. And when you come across a section that you’re left wondering what’s going on, it can be frustrating.

An important question to ask as you review a paper is if each section contains sufficient description and detail to add value to the paper. Notice those areas that come across as too vague and uninteresting. Highlighting the desire for more information encourages the author to add clarity and enhance their ability to communicate effectively.

Question 5: Do you notice any grammar or word choice mistakes?

While this final question may be the most obvious, you want to help your author out by pointing out those grammar and word choice errors that she may have missed.

  • Is there an extra comma?
  • Does she have subject-verb agreement in all sentences?
  • Are most of the sentences in active voice?
  • Did they incorrectly cite their source?
  • Is there an extra tab in their reference page?

Being on the lookout for these types of errors can also help you as the reviewer to refresh your skills in grammar, punctuation, paragraphs and APA Style.

Incorporating a peer review process in finalizing a paper is immensely beneficial for both the author and the reviewer. Each elevates their writing skills. The author is more confident in the paper she submits and the reviewer grows in her editing ability.

Be Supported as You Pursue Your Goals

PGS offers numerous academic support resources to equip you to succeed in your degree program, whether that’s in writing a paper or other assignments. Visit our academic support web page to discover more essential tools.

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peer review questions for creative writing

Ellie Walburg

Ellie Walburg (B.S.’17, M.B.A.’20) serves as the admissions communications coordinator for Cornerstone University’s Professional & Graduate Studies division.

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A Step-by-Step Guide to Writing a Peer Review

The formula for writing a peer review is an organized process, but it’s easy to do when you follow a few simple steps. Writing a well-structured peer review can help maintain the quality and integrity of the research published in your field. According to Publons, the peer-review process “teaches you how to review a manuscript, spot common flaws in research papers, and improve your own chances of being a successful published author.” Listed below are four key steps to writing a quality peer review.

1. Read the manuscript in its entirety

It is important to read the manuscript through to make sure you are a good fit to assess the research. Also, the first read through is significant because this is when you develop your first impression of the article. Should a reviewer suspect plagiarism of any kind, s/he should contact the journal office at [email protected] .

2. Re-read the manuscript and take notes

After the first read through, you can now go back over the manuscript in more detail. For example, you should ask the following questions about the article to develop useful comments and critiques of the research and presentation of the material:

  • Is this research appropriate for the journal?
  • Does the content have archival value?
  • Is this research important to the field?
  • Does the introduction clearly explain motivation?
  • Is the manuscript clear and balanced?
  • Is the author a source of new information?
  • Does the paper stay focused on its subject?
  • Are the ideas and methods presented worthwhile, new, or creative?
  • Does the paper evaluate the strengths and limitations of the work described?
  • Is the impact of the results clearly stated?
  • Is the paper free from personalities and bias?
  • Is the work of others adequately cited?
  • Are the tables and figures clear, relevant, and correct?
  • Does the author demonstrate knowledge of basic composition skills, including word choice, sentence structure, paragraph development, grammar, punctuation, and spelling?  

Please see SAE’s Reviewer Rubric/Guidelines for a complete list of judgment questions and scoring criteria that will be helpful in determining your recommendation for the paper.

3. Write a clear and constructive review

Comments are mandatory for a peer review . The best way to structure your review is to:

  • Open your review with the most important comments—a summarization of the research and your impression of the research.
  • Make sure to include feedback on the strengths, as well as the weaknesses, of the manuscript. Examples and explanations of those should consume most of the review. Provide details of what the authors need to do to improve the paper. Point out both minor and major flaws and offer solutions.
  • End the review with any additional remarks or suggestions.

There can be various ways to write your review with the structure listed above.

Example of comprehensive review

Writing a bad review for a paper not only frustrates the author but also allows for criticism of the peer-review process. It is important to be fair and give the review the time it deserves. While the comments below may be true, examples are needed to support the claims. What makes the paper of low archival value? What makes the paper great? In addition, there are no comments for suggestions to improve the manuscript, except for improving the grammar in the first example.

Examples of bad reviews:

  • Many grammatical issues. Paper should be corrected for grammar and punctuation. Very interesting and timely subject.
  • This paper does not have a high archival value; should be rejected.
  • Great paper; recommend acceptance.

4. Make a recommendation

The last step for a peer reviewer is making a recommendation of either accept, reject, revise, or transfer. Be sure that your recommendation reflects your review. A recommendation of acceptance upon first review is rare and only to be used if there is no room for improvement.

Additional Reviewer Resources

  • Example Review
  • Advice and Resources for Reviewers from Publons
  • Peer Review Resources from Sense about Science

For questions regarding SAE’s peer-review process or if you would like to be a reviewer, please contact [email protected] .

For questions on how to review in Editorial Manager®, please see Editorial Manager® Guide for Reviewers .

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CBSE Class 10 Hindi Paper Analysis 2024: Exam Review, Student Feedback and Expert View

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CBSE Class 10 Board Exam 2024: The Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) Higher Secondary Hindi exam is now over. Students have left the exam centres with the question paper in their hands. On Wednesday, February 21, 2024, the CBSE Class 10 Hindi (Course A and Course B) exam was conducted. The exam started at 10:30 a.m. and was completed at 1:30 p.m. Thus, it took a total of three hours to finish the paper. 

The students who appeared for the CBSE Class 10 Hindi Course A exam received the question booklet of paper code 002. The question paper code was 085 for the students who gave the Hindi Course B exam. In this article, we will shed light on the difficulties faced by students during the exam and provide a complete analysis of the paper. This will help the students, teachers, and parents know how the paper went and what they should expect from the result. Continue reading for more information.

Difference between CBSE Class 10 Hindi Course A and Course B

For those who are confused between Hindi Course A and Hindi Course B offered by CBSE, below is a detailed analysis of both subjects. 

CBSE Class 10 Hindi Question Paper Format 2024

We will start our analysis by discussing the question paper format or design. This will give an idea of the number of questions and their distribution in the Class 10 Hindi paper, CBSE 2024. 

CBSE Class 10 Hindi A Question Paper Pattern 2024

CBSE Class 10 Hindi B Question Paper Pattern 2024

CBSE Class 10 Hindi Section-Wise Analysis

  • The questions in Section A were objective types, or MCQs. 
  • There were 10 comprehensive passages and poems that helped to find the answers.
  • Overall, the section was a bit twisted, but easy to understand.
  • This section comprises descriptive questions.
  • This section consumed a lot of time, so students had to rush in the end.
  • Overall, this section was moderate.

CBSE Class 10 Hindi Exam 2024 Difficulty Level: Student Reaction

Here we will analyse the difficulty level of the question paper based on the students' reactions after the exam's completion. The thing to highlight here is that only a few students were able to interact, so the verdict might vary with a higher percentage. 

As per students who appeared for the CBSE Class 10 Hindi Board exam 2024, the paper was fine, and they faced no difficulty related to question type and format. No questions were asked about deleted chapters or topics. The only challenge that they had to go through was the completion of the paper on time. Section B of the CBSE Hindi paper took a lot of time as students had to write descriptive answers. 

CBSE Class 10 Hindi Exam 2024: Expert Opinion

As per experts, “The CBSE Hindi Class 10 Hindi papers for Course A and Course B were easy and manageable within the given time frame. If students experienced that the paper was lengthy, then it might be because of a lack of writing practice. The comprehensive part was a bit tricky, but not difficult to solve. Students would not worry about how they performed in this exam. They should look forward and practice for the next exam in the raw.”

  • CBSE Class 10 Syllabus for Board Exam 2024
  • CBSE Class 10 Practice Papers with Solutions 2024
  • CBSE Class 10 Sample Papers PDF 2024
  • CBSE Class 10 Deleted Syllabus 2024
  • CBSE Class 10 Science Revision Notes for 2023-24 (Based on New Syllabus)
  • CBSE Class 10 Science Mind Maps for All Chapters (Based on New Syllabus)
  • CBSE Class 10 Maths Mind Maps for All Chapters (Based on New Syllabus)
  • CBSE Class 10 Social Science Mind Maps for All Chapters (Based on New Syllabus)

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COMMENTS

  1. Peer Review

    Peer review refers to the many ways in which students can share their creative work with peers for constructive feedback and then use this feedback to revise and improve their work. For the writing process, revision is as important as drafting, but students often feel they cannot let go of their original words.

  2. Boldface 101: the Creative Writing Peer Review

    BOLDFACE 101: THE CREATIVE WRITING PEER REVIEW glassmountaineditors May 12, 2018 Boldface 101 Comments are off for this post Workshops are an integral and exciting part of the Boldface experience. At first, however, they can seem intimidating. Don't worry!

  3. Peer Review in the Writing Classroom

    November 30, 2023 Courtney Hale / iStock "What is more challenging for you—giving feedback or receiving feedback? Why do you think that is?" I project this question on the board when students walk into our peer writing workshop.

  4. Guided Questions for Peer Review

    How can the thesis be more specific and complex? How can the writer demonstrate why their argument is significant? Does the thesis provide an outline of where the paper goes? Organization. How do the ideas in the paper progress? How does the writer transition between points and/or paragraphs? Does the writer use paragraphs that are too short?

  5. Conducting Peer Review

    What meaningful feedback can writers take from their readers? What criteria should be used to review papers in this class? Consider providing examples or models of the kind of feedback you'd like students to provide. Effective peer review is a guided, structured process. You'll need to provide students with focused tasks or criteria.

  6. Giving Feedback for Peer Review

    Good peer reviews answer questions like "do readers understand the points I'm trying to get across, or are they reading me wrong?" and "am I using the right arguments and evidence for the audience I'm trying to reach?" Common misconceptions on both reviewer and reviewee sides, however, often keep peer review from being as effective as it can be.

  7. Guide: Engaging in Peer Review

    If You are the Writer If you are the writer, think of peer-review as a way to test how well your writing is working. Keep an open mind and be prepared for criticism. Even the best writers have room for improvement. Even so, it is still up to you whether or not to take the peer-review reader's advice.

  8. Assignment: Peer Review Instructions for Fiction

    Additional Directions. Download, print, and use the Peer Review Form. Type your peer review responses on the form. Use one form for each peer review you complete, a total of four peer reviews per writing assignments. Use bold headers: Content, Organization, Grammar, Questions, Praise. Do not bold the text you write underneath the headers.

  9. Designing peer review: Research and intentional practices for effective

    Most of the students in a creative nonfiction course we teach at Oakland University (an R2 university in southeast Michigan) have already encountered some kind of writing workshop model in their high school English classes or in their first-year writing classes, and many, like our student quoted in the epigraph above, are apprehensive about participating in their first creative writing workshop.

  10. How to Write a Peer Review

    Here's how your outline might look: 1. Summary of the research and your overall impression. In your own words, summarize what the manuscript claims to report. This shows the editor how you interpreted the manuscript and will highlight any major differences in perspective between you and the other reviewers. Give an overview of the manuscript ...

  11. PDF Short Story Peer Review Workshop

    Short Story Peer Review Workshop - Overall Review (PQP) Directions: Make comments directly on a copy of the author's story as they read it to you. Be sure to provide comments for each category. Write as many comments as you can. Praise: What do you like about my story? What works well?

  12. Rethinking Peer Review: Critical Reflections on a Pedagogical Practice

    Though long considered an essential element in writing and writing-intensive courses, peer review continues to provoke questions and provide challenges for instructors and students. By questioning and clarifying the goals of peer review, the contributors to this edited collection demonstrate how peer review can inform and enhance student ...

  13. 5 Peer Editing Strategies That Actually Work For Student Writers

    Oct 7, 2014 When you ask your students to do peer review of their writing, do they stare at you with puzzled expressions? Here are five specific, hands-on approaches to peer conferencing that your students can really sink their teeth into. Revising and editing a peer's writing helps students learn to work as a team.

  14. Ideas for Peer Review

    At the CTL, we've recently gotten some good questions about structuring effective peer review so that students (1) want to do it, (2) find it useful, and (3) take it seriously. Here's a roundup of some of the research-supported advice that we've been discussing in faculty consultations. Preparing your class for a peer review

  15. PDF Resisting Theory: the Wisdom of The Creative Writing Workshop

    ified what my composition colleagues were doing for peer review. In the creative writing classes, student work was discussed in a relatively unstructured and often unpredictable way. Reading academic articles about creative writing workshop practices rein-forced my sense of an undefined but shared practice called "workshopping."

  16. Introduction to Creative Writing

    Use strong action verbs in your sentences. Here's an example: You Wrote: Two weeks during my childhood summers, Dad became a hired-hand for Louie Gossen, a local farmer. Revision: Two weeks during my childhood summers, my dad's friend Louie Gossen employed him as a hired-hand.

  17. Peer Feedback, Revising, and Editing

    8 Peer Feedback, Revising, and Editing . Liza Long and Joel Gladd. In Stephen King's On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft, he famously suggests that an important part of any writer's toolkit is to create space between an initial draft and a later read.Some of his novel manuscripts would sit for months in a room before getting a fresh look. It takes time to achieve the right perspective.

  18. The Power of Peer Editing: Five Questions to Ask in the Review

    You become a better editor. Whether you're passing your paper off or reviewing a paper, your skills in writing can be greatly enhanced. Questions to Ask in the Peer Review In the peer review process, it's helpful to have a plan of action in addressing the paper. Below are five questions that can help guide the process.

  19. Peer Review

    Revising & Editing Process » Peer Review Peer Review Whether you're in an online class or a face-to-face class, peer review is an important part of the revision process and is often a required component in a writing class. In the following video, you'll see students engage in a particular type of peer review called CARES. Video Transcript

  20. Introduction to Creative Writing

    Download, print, and use the Peer Review Form. Type your peer review responses on the form. Use one form for each peer review you complete, a total of four peer reviews per writing assignments. Use bold headers: Content, Organization, Grammar, Questions, Praise. Do not bold the text you write underneath the headers. Receiving Feedback

  21. Peer Review Writing Guide

    3. Write a clear and constructive review. Comments are mandatory for a peer review. The best way to structure your review is to: Open your review with the most important comments—a summarization of the research and your impression of the research. Make sure to include feedback on the strengths, as well as the weaknesses, of the manuscript.

  22. Creative Writing Peer Review Teaching Resources

    Short Story Creative Writing Peer Review Protocol. by. Suzanne Wallace. 4.6. (3) $2.00. Word Document File. This handout is ready to print and use for a partner peer review activity for short stories. It solicits peer feedback on the following areas: Title Hook Setting Descriptive Language Characterization Dialogue Transitions & Paragraph ...

  23. Peer Review Questions For Creative Writing

    Introduction to Creative Writing. Peer Review Information. Search for: Sample Peer Review for Fiction. To: Jane Doe. From: Jack Frost. . . . Questions. On page 2. can you give some sense of the size…

  24. CBSE Class 10 Hindi Paper Analysis 2024: Exam Review, Student ...

    Students have left the exam centres with the question paper in their hands. Today, on Wednesday, February 21, 2024, the CBSE Class 10 Hindi (Course A and Course B) exam was conducted. The exam ...

  25. Educational Assignments Helper on Instagram: "We provide the best

    0 likes, 0 comments - educationalassignmentshelper on February 14, 2024: "We provide the best assignment writing services in all fields of study. Your assignment data will..." Educational Assignments Helper on Instagram: "We provide the best assignment writing services in all fields of study.