Peer review in a remote environment – Hosna Sheikholeslami, Anthropology and Sociology

A key part of my Sex and Gender in Society course is a semester long research paper. This project is scaffolded throughout the semester and involves several rounds of in-class peer review. With transition to remote learning, I needed a new strategy to incorporate this important component.

Enter Notebowl and Google Docs
This spring, I used a combination of Notebowl posts and Google Docs to continue the peer review process in the remote setting. First, I divided the class into groups of three and created a NB discussion board for each of these groups. Next, I posted a peer review outline on Notebowl containing instructions for the review process and a rubric I used for final evaluation of the research paper. Now, I had to get the papers in the hands of the reviewers. To do this, I provided students with detailed instructions on how to upload their papers to Google Docs and make the files accessible to other students in the class. Students would share these file links with their group members via the group discussion boards on Notebowl. Finally, students would submit their completed peer reviews (also completed using Google Docs) to me and the author via Notebowl. The authors would use this feedback to revise their papers before submission.

So, with a minimum amount of technology and structured guidance, my students were able to engage in this important work.

Hosna Sheikholeslami
Assistant Professor
Anthropology & Sociology/Middle East North African Studies