skip to content

It is challenging to reflect upon your own work and to be as objective as you could be. you might be overly critical of yourself or perhaps overly confident in some areas. Your supervisors and Director of Studies will of course provide essential objective advice, but don't forget that your fellow students can also be a useful point of reference.

Activity: peer assessment

Ask your supervision partner or another student to read one or two of your essays and to identify two or three areas relating to the core assessment criteria (doc) in which they feel you have done well (it is easy to disregard your strengths in your eagerness to improve) and then two or three which might benefit from improvement. Be prepared to take their view into consideration and alter your action points if necessary.

Activity: student as assessor

Some supervisors give students the opportunity to offer feedback on one another's work during supervisions. If you can explain to someone else what areas they perform well in and which might benefit from improvement, then you should be better placed to assess your own progress. Under no circumstances does this activity 'replace' the expertise of your supervisor; it simply encourages you to practice reflecting critically on your own writing. Your supervisor is undoubtedly better placed to remark upon the content and validity of your argument.

Read this supervision essay (pdf) and, using the core assessment criteria (doc) in this package, decide what feedback you would offer this student. Don't forget to focus on what they do well in addition to areas for improvement.

Some supervisors do not give grades/classifications because they feel written and verbal feedback is more detailed and useful in the early stages of your academic writing. However, you may receive classifications such as 'upper second' or II(i); ask your supervisor if you are unsure of the differences between these.

After you have decided what feedback you would offer,  you can access the supervision essay with supervisor comments (pdf).  This student has identified a lot of the key points but there are some concepts which are missing: metal ions, co-factors, stereospecificity and microenvironments. Also, in places, they could provide a little more specific detail. II(ii) to II(i).  If you have used the core assessment criteria, you may wish to compare your grid with this completed version (pdf).