Research Article

Why students want to provide feedback to their peers: Drivers of feedback quantity and variation by type of course


We researched students’ peer feedback motivation types and how the instructional context would influence feedback motivations. Participants were 138 undergraduate management majors (female = 41%; mean age = 20 years, SD = 0.5 years) taking a programming course in two options: optional (n = 47), compulsory (n = 91). The students utilised an online peer assessment tool and completed a peer feedback motivations scale on their reasons for providing feedback. Factor analysis of the motivation revealed four factors: Review-for-Rule, Review-for-Achievement, Review-for-Pleasure, and Review-for-Reward. Of these factors, the Review-for-Rule factor was a strong predictor of the amount of feedback across course options. The Type-of-Course significantly impacted motivation to review, although it was most strongly reflected in differences in the Review-for-Achievement factor. This study revealed that there are multiple motivations for peers providing feedback, and they are distinct from general attitudes about peer feedback. This suggests a new framework for research on students’ reaction to peer feedback, suggesting productive avenues for improving student participation in peer feedback.

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