The decision to research the use of real-time feedback in the classroom was influenced by the groups’ interest in growth mindset and the links it has to feedback. It is evident from studies that feedback in the classroom has a huge impact on learning (Education Scotland, 2019). This may be because feedback refocuses the learner on the lesson goal(s). Teacher feedback in particular, “is an essential component of the learning process” (Conroy et al, 2009: 21). Drawing on Carol Dweck’s work, Shirley Clarke (2008) expresses a preference for feedback being related to effort and achievement, as opposed to ability. This is due to the fact that pupils who are praised for ability e.g. being ‘clever’ will respond negatively when they experience failure as they will begin to feel they are not ‘clever’, affecting their self-esteem and confidence. Effective feedback is prompt (Conroy et al, 2009), specific and clear (Education Scotland, 2019). It highlights what exactly the pupil has done well, provides suggestions on where the pupil could improve and relates to previous work if relevant (Education Scotland, 2019). Black and Wiliam (1998) agree, stating that feedback should be about qualities of pupil work and provide ways to improve. Prompt feedback, such as the verbal feedback given during lessons would therefore hopefully allow children to take the feedback on board and act upon it immediately. Therefore, it was decided that the study would look at the use of real-time verbal feedback in the classroom, focusing on the impact it has on pupil work and confidence.
The aim of this enquiry was to identify if real-time, verbal feedback during taught writing lessons had an impact on the standard of pupil work, their views towards feedback and their confidence in taught writing.