facilitating peer-feedback in a cross disciplinary/cultural context by drawing on the game metaphor
The increase in transnational student mobility brings together students with very different experiences with and understandings of what it means to study and in which formats learning takes place. Culturally embedded understandings and competences on how to interact in group work in a Danish educational context becomes visible as such, and as a consequence international students can experience difficulties with participating in group work with Danish students. These difficulties become especially problematic in the peer-feedback situation that can make students feel exposed (Topping 1998, Hanrahan & Isaacs, 2001) and unsure about what is expected of them. We suggest reconceptualizing the peer feedback process as a board game to overcome some of these difficulties. By drawing on the game metaphor and well-known elements of games (turn taking, time taking, rules and sanctions, Salen & Zimmermann, 2006), the rules for engaging in the activity becomes explicit as expectations and tasks are clearly described in every “players” rule book. By including guided meta reflections on the groups expectations, strengths and weaknesses, the board game also offers a structure that supports the group members collaboration and learning process. Test with Danish peer feedback groups with cross disciplinary members shows that the text feedback board game does support the groups peer feedback process partly because the game metaphor allows for the rule book format which offers an acceptable genre for making tacit knowledge explicit. Initial experiences with use of the game suggest that this is also the case in a multi-cultural setting.
Main Research Area:
CALPIU'12: Higher education across borders: Transcultural interaction and linguistic diversity, 2012