iPeer is a peer review application where instructors can customize and receive students’ evaluations of one another for group work or team based learning activities.
iPeer is a web application that allows instructors to develop and deliver rubric-based peer evaluations, and to review and release student comments and scoring. Instructors can analyze evaluation results and provide students with grades and feedback for their group performance.
When students work in groups, the group work is often graded and all members share the same grade. However, a common lament is that not every group member contributed equally. Also, group work and team work are skills that need to be developed and measured. iPeer enables the instructor to get group members’ input on each student in the group to help inform the instructor how the students are learning to perform in group work. If there are several peer evaluation events, it can inform the instructor how the teams are forming, storming, norming, and help the teams get to performing as described in Bruce Tuckman’s 1965 paper “Developmental Sequence in Small Groups.”
iPeer is intended to facilitate a paperless form of peer review for group work. In the traditional classroom, after students worked in groups, the instructor could make a worksheet with the questions the students needed to answer about their fellow group members. Each student would get a copy and enter a name of a peer followed by answers to the questions about that peer. Then the student would repeat that for the other members in the group. The instructor would collect the worksheets and attempt to compile the results on each member of each group and arrive at a score for each student. This process could be done online with students filling out a Word document, but even that poses a challenge for the instructor to compile scores and comments on each student.
iPeer is not intended for students to review the work submitted by another student (for example, another student’s essay). Canvas Assignments has a Peer Review feature for this purpose. It allows students to view and evaluate other students’ assignment submission. CLAS can also allow peers to review, annotate, and comment on peer submissions of PDFs, audio and video but it does not record or compile scores or keep reviews anonymous.
How to Set Up and Run an iPeer Peer Evaluation Event
In the CTL support documentation (see below), you will find that there are several tasks in the process of setting up iPeer and running an evaluation event:
- The instructor requests an account from the CTL.
- The instructor creates the iPeer copy of the Canvas course.
- If the TAs have already helped an instructor with iPeer, they will list as instructors in iPeer. If not, CTL can edit the TA role in iPeer to be able to assist the instructor there.
- The instructor imports students from the Canvas course.
- The instructor or a TA creates the groups in the Canvas course.
- Once the group membership has been established, the instructor imports the group list from Canvas course into iPeer. In some cases, a TA can create a spreadsheet (CSV) of the groups and group membership to import directly in iPeer.
- The instructor creates an evaluation questionnaire from scratch, or can copy from those shared by other instructors and edit it as desired.
- The instructor creates an evaluation event with dates, the evaluation questionnaire, and the groups involved.
- The instructor informs the students of the iPeer event and can insert a weblink to iPeer in Canvas.
- The students have a time period in which to complete the evaluation of their peers until a due date. Students log into iPeer with their CWL and they see the evaluation event they have to complete, and the associated dates.
- The results are compiled and the instructor can choose to release each students’ reviews, or export to a spreadsheet, or transfer them to Canvas Grades.