Skills Hub

The purpose of feedback at university

Feedback is an essential part of your learning at university. It should help you to understand the areas in which you are doing well and what you can do to improve.

Good feedback 

  • Helps you to assess your own learning and reflect on your development
  • Allows you to discuss your learning with your tutors
  • Helps you to understand good performance and what is expected of you 
  • Gives you the opportunity to progress
  • Provides you with information about your learning
  • Encourages you to think positively about your learning
  • Provides information to teachers that can help shape their teaching. 


Feedback is not . . . 

a justification for your mark
For some pieces of work you will receive a mark and comments. The comments are not a justification for your mark. Your mark will reflect your achievement for that particular piece of work, while the feedback can provide you with much more, including suggestions to consider for your next piece of work. 

about every aspect of your assessment
Your tutors will select and comment on the most important areas where you've done well and where you can improve (e.g. if the tutor doesn't mention that you showed a good understanding of a primary text, that is not to say that you didn't demonstrate this). Tutors carefully select their feedback. 

the end of a process
Often you will receive feedback some time after completing a piece of work, when you may be focusing on your next assignment.  

Chloe and Donna

Second-year Geography

View Chloe and Donna's student perspective


Donna: Usually we'll get our essays back, a marked copy, so we can read through what the lecturer has written and how they've gone through it and we'll also get feedback online so you can look at both of them. It's up to you what option you look at.

Chloe: The feedback online, I'm not sure if they do it before the end of the year. I know definitely at the end of the year they'll put a graph up from your courses and the graph will show you the average grade, the highest grade, the lowest grade and your grade and only you can access it. No one else can see your grade but it means you can chart your progress and work out if you're at the standard you want to be at.

Donna: You can see what subjects can be pulling you down as well, so you can tell exactly what you need to improve on.



Second-year Electrical and electronic engineering

View Tayo's student perspective


You get feedback every week because during the lecture sessions they give you a worksheet and you have to take it home and do it on your own. And if you need help, you go to the workshop and ask the PhD student - they will help you out. Apart from that, you can just go up to your lecturers and just talk to them about what you don't really understand and what you're doing wrong.

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