- Some educators are finding that giving students video feedback is a more effective strategy than traditional methods and more accurately portrays their impressions of a students’ work. And researchers say there may be good reason for it.
- The Hechinger Report describes one Chicago-area English teacher who found that oral responses to English papers were widely praised by students and that his use of videos seemed to result in better work, with students feeling less deflated by criticism and teachers' critiques of assignments taking less time.
- Those findings mirrored the results from researchers, who have also discovered that people in general have an adverse reaction to the red pen and that video may be more descriptive. They also found, however, that video-taping the responses takes some skill with recording equipment or a cell phone, and that it's important to have a "casual, conversational style, which students see as authentic and accessible.”
Studies have long shown that a lot of information is communicated in non-verbal cues that can’t be exchanged in written responses to student work, and more recently research about email and text messages has suggested that one's original ideas can get lost. Studies have also found students involved in online courses to be less engaged.
Meanwhile, administrators are also using more video in giving feedback to teachers, perhaps because according to some accounts, as many as 70% teachers don’t feel offer current evaluation methods provide valuable insight about their teaching,
The Best Foot Forward project at Harvard University tracked about 500 teachers who videotaped their lessons and found nearly half felt that watching themselves changed their teaching. Most also believed they received a more fair, accurate and useful review by administrators. Administrators found they they could spend more time on the observations and look at the videos when they were less distracted. Both groups supported their use.
One researcher has found that a combination of written responses and audio or video communications was most beneficial in communication with students.