Peer Editing

Peer Editing Guidelines


You will be reviewing one or two of your classmates' essays for each of our major writing assignments. You will share your essay with each partner as a printed document in a face-to-face classroom or as an attachment if in an online course. (Note re: online sharing: nearly everyone has Microsoft Word, but I might ask you to upload your essays as Rich Text Files.) When reviewing your partners' essays, your goal is to offer a minimum of at least two comments per paragraph.

Also, when you upload your essay to Blackboard, include in your post a brief note about something in particular you would like your partners to examine closely. Perhaps you struggled with your introduction, or maybe you are concerned you have too much background information. Include a brief message in your post in which you ask your partners to look at something in particular.

As you look at your classmates' essays, you may want to keep the following in mind, focusing on some of these areas in your classmates' essays:

  1. Review the assignment - Re-read the assignment and make sure your partner has addressed the assignment sufficiently. Offer suggestions if further revision is needed on this draft to insure it addresses all parts of the assignment.
  2. Introduction-- Comment on the strengths and/or the weaknesses of the introduction. Is it engaging and focused? Do you know what the writer will be focusing on in this essay based on the introduction? (is the thesis clear?) You may want to review the handout on effective introductions before making comments here.
  3. Paragraph Development-- Are the paragraphs well-developed, with clear, specific examples and thoughtful analysis where necessary? Are there questions you have in any paragraphs? Does the writer stay focused in each paragraph? Are they well-developed?
  4. Clarity-- Read through the essay and highlight those areas (either words, sentences, or paragraphs) which confused you for any reason. Offer suggestions for revision where appropriate.
  5. Comment on the writer's conclusion. Is it simply a boring repeat of what he or she has already said, or does it offer a reflection? Make suggestions where necessary.

Remember: failure to share a copy of your draft with your partners will result in a full letter grade drop of your final essay grade; in addition, you can lose up to the full points available for peer editing by not sharing a rather complete draft and/or your feedback with your partners.