Peer Review

Last updated: Sep 28, 2020 at 3:57am

Overview

The peer review contributes to a significant portion of your individual grade.

Performance reviews are commonplace in industry. Here, the goal of having anonymous reviews is to provide direct, peer feedback on your performance and contributions. This will help you improve over the course of the term. Additionally, we hope that during the review process you will also reflect upon your own contributions and thus gain experience in critically assessing your own efforts.

Peer reviews are conducted using online forms available through your dashboard, and four peer reviews are scheduled throughout the term.

The first peer review is early in the term to provide initial feedback on performance within your section. The results of this survey are provided to students only. Instructors will not see the results.


The second peer review is roughly 1/2 way through the in-person term (after the sketch model review) and is also intended to provide feedback to section members. The results of the survey are provided to both students and instructors, but they are not used for grading. Information is provided to instructors in the event that there are problems that may need assistance to be resolved.


The third peer review is approximately 3/4 through the term and 1/2 way through the final prototyping stage. This review provides feedback from the entire team, not just your section. Again, instructors will also receive the information but it will not be used for grading.


The fourth peer review is completed after your final presentation materials have been submitted. This review is used for grading purposes, and to provide your team-members feedback.

Preparation

Before completing the peer review, it is highly recommended that you familiarize yourself with your teammates efforts. A good approach is to review the design notebook highlights that have been posted on your team page (found under the "Teams" menu on the course website, click on each person to view their design notebook). The notebook pages can also be accessed directly from the peer review forms.

Scenario

You are in charge of dispensing compensation for your team. Your budget is 1000 bonus points per team member and you are free to distribute this reward in anyway that you see fit. You are being asked to make a general decision on the performance of your peers. In addition to the bonus allocation, your comments are extremely important for adjusting team member behavior, so please spend some time and be constructive.

The on-line form

The online form is intended to make the review process easy and discreet. Each of your section or team members should be listed with a box for the amount you wish to give as his/her bonus (integer bonus points please). There is also a space for comments: what they should do less of, what they should keep the same, and what they should do more of.

Be sure to evaluate your own performance and allocate some of the bonus to yourself.

Review etiquette

Making thoughtful, honest comments is a very important contribution to your team’s performance. You must make an award to each team member, including yourself, and if there is a reason to enter a very large or small number, please make sure to include appropriate comments... a zero with no comment is just mean, not constructive. The form will only allow submission when the bonuses total 1000x the number of members on your team. If you get an error message just adjust the numbers so they add up and try again.

You may want to review some pointers on writing constructive feedback and being aware of unconscious bias presented in Lecture 8. You may download the constructive, unbiased feedback recipe card to keep the main points in mind.

Submission and distribution

The peer review form will be available in your dashboard when it is time to submit a peer review. You may edit your review up until the submission deadline. After the submission deadline, the results are automatically sorted and distributed accordingly, depending on which of the 4 peer reviews is being conducted. You always receive only the reviews that pertain to yourself. Peer reviews are anonymous, your identity will never be revealed to those you are reviewing.

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