Peer review is a useful component of MBI units as it allows students to receive feedback on their work from their peers. This feedback can help students improve their explanations, identify any gaps in understanding they may have, and refine their understanding of the science ideas being studied.
In an MBI unit, students are tasked with constructing an evidence-based explanation of an anchoring phenomenon. The peer review process involves students sharing their final written explanations to their classmates, who then provide constructive feedback on the explanation's accuracy, completeness, and clarity. This feedback can be given orally, through written comments, or both.
Peer review helps students to understand that explanations are subject to critique and improvement. It also encourages students to think critically about the explanations of their peers and to develop their own evaluation skills. Additionally, by giving and receiving feedback, students develop important communication and collaboration skills, which are essential in scientific inquiry.
Peer Review Guide
While there are many generic peer review templates available, we recommend using the peer review guide to the left. It is specific to MBI units and coordinates with the MBI explanation rubric the students will be evaluated on.
We recommend the following procedure to conduct the peer review:
Review the MBI explanation rubric with the students as a whole group. What is meant by each of the criteria?
If this is the first time students have peer reviewed a scientific explanation, provide them with a short example from another unit to review together.
Determine how many reviews you would like each student to receive. We suggest at least two.
Have students trade explanations either digitally or on paper. We try to have students review each others' papers so they can meet to get feedback.
Give students 15-20 minutes per review.
After each review, have the students provide feedback orally as well to give them time to ask any clarifying questions they may have.
After the reviews are complete, give students additional time to revise their own explanations based on their peers' comments.