A Reflection on the Introduction of a Peer and Self Assessment Initiative

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This paper discusses the introduction and evaluation of peer and self assessment elements into two nursing modules, (one undergraduate, (UG) and one postgraduate, (PG). 40 UG nursing students and 22 PG education students participated in a Peer and self assessment exercise within their respective modules. Students evaluated the process by questionnaire and made recommendations for future modules. 32 out of 40 (80%) undergraduate & 20 out of 22 (91%) post graduate students returned the questionnaires. Over two-thirds of each group recommended introducing peer assessment into their modules. Students saw peer and self assessment as motivational, encouraging learning, and a fair and truthful method of assessment. Weaknesses were seen as possibility of personal bias, students unsure about their assessment skills and may disadvantage quiet students or those with English as a second language. Both groups felt peer feedback would further their own learning. Both groups scored their peers at the higher end of the range of scores. Peer and self assessment is seen positively by UG and PG students and is perceived to motivate, facilitate learning, and be fair. Consideration must be given to less dominant group members, as quiet students do not necessarily produce less effort. Peer and self assessment may help students develop sustainable skills which can be used in the workplace, such as judgement and assessment of self and others.
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