Skip to main content
Queen Mary Academy

Audio Feedback

Xue Zhou profile picture

Dr Xue Zhou

Reader in Entrepreneurship and Innovation; Programme Director for BSc Business Management (Year 2); Queen Mary Academy Fellow

Asynchronous audio feedback develops personal and emotional connections between students and tutors. It can also reduce students’ anxiety and stress, and improve their engagement with feedback.

Audio and video feedback have been shown to be an effective approach to engaging students with feedback. It is also notable that students value the more detailed, meaningful, and personalised feedback that they receive through audio comments rather than written feedback.

Audio feedback has been adopted in a big module with over 350 students, which aims to engage students with feedback, and to explore to what extent the audio feedback impact on students’ well-being. The feedback was recorded using the online platform Turnitin Feedback Studio with a maximum of 2 minutes in length. Tutors refer to the students by first name in the feedback.

To ensure the consistent quality of the audio feedback provision across the teaching team (with 5 tutors), guidance and examples of audio feedback have been provided to support tutors’ audio feedback recording. An initial meeting was also arranged to ensure that the tutors are confident in using the audio software, and agreement on the feedback structure and content. The audio feedback should last no less than 1:30 mins, with good speed of delivery and clear pronunciation.

Students have been notified that audio feedback will be used in this module, both in the assessment brief as well as in the lecture. Detailed guidance on how to access their audio feedback on the learning platform was also introduced.

  • Better student engagement with feedback: 68% of the students have listened to their feedback after 3 weeks. For another assignment with the same cohort of students where written feedback was used, only 45% of the students have viewed their feedback after 20 weeks.
  • Positive impact on students’ well-being and learning regardless of the students’ language proficiency.
  • Vivid and personalised feedback that enhanced students’ understanding of the feedback.
  • A personal connection was developed between tutors and students, reducing the students’ anxiety and stress in engaging with feedback.
  • Students reported that they have listened to their audio comments multiple times, and they appreciate the tutors’ effort and time in the feedback provision.

  • You can only provide up to 2 minutes of audio feedback due the limitation of the Turnitin Feedback Studio setting.
  • Broadband issues and background noise can be disruptive, which could make it difficult to record the feedback.
  • Ensuring consistent quality and amount of audio feedback provision across a big teaching team can be challenging.
  • Due to different accents, it can be challenging for students to understand the spoken feedback, especially for international students with lower language proficiency.

A questionnaire and focus groups were conducted to investigate international student’s perception of audio feedback​, and the impact of audio feedback on students well-being and learning.

Some of the benefits that were identified were: feeling of personal connection; students reported that feedback was more individualised, detailed and vivid. They also reported having a deeper understanding of the feedback. 68% of the students had listened their feedback after three weeks. For another assignment with the same cohort of students where written feedback was used only 45% of the students had viewed their feedback after 20 weeks.

On the other hand, students with less developed English-language proficiency were less enthusiastic about audio feedback than their peers. For them, audio feedback could be more time consuming as because they required repeated listening. Other factors like tutor’s accent and background noise affected overall student experience of audio feedback.

This feedback design is suitable for both formative and summative feedback via QMPlus, and makes use of Turnitin Feedback Studio. 

Back to top