The Steps in Peer Review and Its Importance

Often students are asked to

 review 
their peers

 essays 
and term papers. Why? This is a learning process for both the writer and readers in many ways. First, it gives the writer a real audience and a chance to hear what others think about their

 essay 
. Readers can say what they like and dislike about the

 essay 
. It gives the student a chance to make corrections before the instructor sees the

 essay 
. The reader can point out different mistakes and make suggestions about the

 essay 
or research paper. It is important for the student to remember that not all suggestions have to be accepted.

 Good 
peer

 review 
takes time and effort. It is important to begin the

 essay 
early so the reviewer has time to

 review 
it properly. The purpose of peer

 reviews 
is to improve editing skills and have someone point out the strengths and weaknesses of an

 essay 
.

Students who

 review 
the works of others are benefited by learning how to read

 essays 
with a critical mind. Students who critique others learn to critique their own work. This is beneficial as they learn to read and search for mistakes they see in

 essays 
by other students.

Often instructors distribute suggestions and questions to search for while

 reviewing 

 essays 
of students. Here are some suggested questions for peer

 reviewing 
:

– What is the main idea?

– What is the thesis? Is the thesis in the first paragraph? Is the thesis clear?

– Is a hook used in the first paragraph? What type of hook?

– Does the

 essay 
support the thesis? What types of evidence is used? Does the evidence have relevance? Does the evidence have credibility?

– Is the

 essay 
organized? Why? Why not?

– Look at each paragraph and see if the main idea supports the thesis.

– Is the

 essay 
too wordy?

– Is there supporting evidence for each of the main topic sentences?

– Are transitions used between paragraphs?

– What are the main strengths of the

 essay 
?

– What are the weaknesses?

– Are any of the words spelled incorrectly?

– Check the grammar and punctuation.

Use specific words to describe the problems in the

 essay 
. What needs to be changed? What can be added to make a

 better 

 essay 
? When you finish reading the

 essay 
do you have questions? Write these down. If you had problems understanding a point jot this down in the margin of the

 essay 
. Let the writer know what you like about the

 essay 
.

While it is important to note changes that need to be made on the

 essay 
, it is also important to be positive. What did you like about the

 essay 
? What were the strengths of the

 essay 
? Did you like the hook? Think about positive comments to make about the

 essay 
even if you think it is the worse

 essay 
that you have ever read. It is also important to use negative comments even if it is your

 best 
friend who wrote the

 essay 
. Remember any comments you make may make a difference in the final

 essay 
and the grade the student makes on the

 essay 
. Failing to be honest about the

 essay 
can hurt the writer. In fact, professional writers usually have a critique group

 review 
their articles and they want the truth because editors often “reject” an article for mistakes. While teachers may not reject the article, they may give the student a bad grade. Think of honest comments and be objective.

Peer

 reviews 
are important because students doing the peer

 reviews 
learn how to be more objective about their

 essays 
. Peer

 reviews 
help students to get a

 better 
grade because they can rewrite their custom

 essays 
and term papers. Remember to be honest, objective, and kind.

 
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