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How to Write Good-Quality Quiz Feedback

No
Identify what was good about the solution

Yes
Good understanding of what’s strong: “In my answer, I had support from the model: in V = IR, if current increases, it seems like voltage must increase.” “My answer was wrong, but I stated it in my own words, so it’s really clear what I was thinking.” “I used both a diagram and a formula to explain.”

Understand What’s Strong

Poor understanding of what’s strong: “My answer was right.” “My answer was wrong.”

It is important to hold on to the good elements you already have and add new good ones by completing the feedback. Did you: Use support from the model? Relate it to your real-world experiences? Explain in your own words? Back up your point with a diagram? Back up your point with a formula? Back up your point with a definition? Back up your point with a physical cause? Explain why there is not enough evidence to answer? Notice evidence that contradicts your point? Resolve contradictions? What caused the problem?

“My answer was like yours.”

Diagnose What’s Wrong

a) Identify errors b) Diagnose the underlying thinking about physics that caused you to get this wrong or prevented you from seeing the whole picture Please note that just writing down what mistakes you made is not helpful. You need to analyze your thinking behind your mistakes, and explain the nature of the misunderstandings: • • • • identify why you answered the way you did, where your understanding might have been weak, what you found hard to think about clearly, what knowledge or skills you were missing that prevented you from correctly completing the solution, etc.

Poor diagnosis shows no description of thinking behind difficulty • • • • • “I read it wrong.” “I was confused.” “I picked the wrong equation.” “I didn’t remember to use V=IR.” “I didn’t know what you wanted.”

Good feedback focuses on reasons for actions • • “I thought that the larger current could actually cause a larger voltage.” “I knew it was power, so I looked at the effect of the current. But then I didn’t continue to consider other causes, like voltage or resistance.” “I didn’t realize…” “I thought…”

• •

Learn from your answer by generalizing beyond the specific problem. By carefully thinking about the particular misunderstanding or missing info, you should develop a better understanding of the basic physics principles. In your writing you should identify this new thinking and describe how it will prevent you from having similar problems in the future.

Poor generalization doesn’t relate to the specific question • • “I learned to read the question carefully” “I learned to pick the right equations before solving a problem”

Good Generalization – Uses the specific question to draw a conclusion that is true in general • • Add a cause, formula, diagram, or other addition from the “Understand” phase “The important thing to remember is that when I increases, it doesn’t do it for no reason. You can’t tell a battery how much current to output. If I increases, it’s either because the battery voltage went up, or the circuit resistance went down.” “I didn’t realize how important it is to distinguish between voltage drop and voltage rise. I learned that by increasing the resistance of one component, you can increase the voltage drop across it, but you can’t change the voltage rise of the battery.”

Improve

Please note that merely writing down the correct solution is not feedback. You are expected to generalize beyond the specific problem to discuss the general principles of physics.

Poor generalization doesn’t relate to anything other than the specific question • “I learned that the amount of voltage drop from A to B is the same as the voltage drop from B to F.” I learned that the answer is 2mA.

Skill: Write good-quality feedback to yourself. 1. Write feedback to yourself about a question where you got the answer correct, but you think you could improve your reasoning. (Understand, Improve) 2. Write feedback to yourself about two questions where you got an incorrect answer, and you think you could improve your reasoning. (Understand, Diagnose, Improve) 3. Submit to instructor: a. Original test b. Feedback