Pardon the Correction: Meeting Students’ Needs & Expectations with Confidence (Video)

We had a great time leading this workshop in Baltimore, and I’m excited to post this video summarizing it here…though I had a bit less fun making the video because I’m suffering from a nasty toothache today. But I couldn’t wait to put this together, today was the day. Hopefully the dental issues and swollen cheeks don’t too badly affect my delivery. The slides themselves are here: PTC TESOL16 Final.

Links to our favorite research on immediate oral feedback: 1 (full), 2 (full), 3 (abstract only) all by Drew S. Fagan at the University of Maryland.

Please use the comment box below to leave your thoughts on the topic and/or questions about the presentation. I’ll definitely be following up with more as this is an area that is endless interesting to me.

Also, as briefly hinted at in the presentation above we were using the terms ‘error’ and ‘correction’ in part in order to intentionally limit the scope of what we’re focusing on. But ‘error correction’ by itself doesn’t, in fact, go far enough to get to the heart of the larger matter, which is feedback more generally. Well…I take that phrase back – because I think ‘error correction’ is at the heart of the matter…it’s just not the body which the heart feeds with good blood. I plan to explore these matters much more here soon.

In the meantime, I’d mention that Diana England led an excellent webinar the other day called “Feedback as a Springboard for Learning”, and the recording is here.

Update: Chris Smith’s guest post today on Russ Mayne’s blog is an excellent look at the effectiveness of corrective feedback:

7 thoughts on “Pardon the Correction: Meeting Students’ Needs & Expectations with Confidence (Video)

  1. OK, should have waited till I’d watched this! Just watched your summary – really nice idea comparing the mismatch between teacher beliefs and student needs. Something I would add although I’m sure teacher worries about over-correction are generally misplaced, in my experience, if past students have tended to react badly at all to correction it’s for correction of slips, this ‘conscious incompetence’ (i.e. with irritation at themselves or me when they knew the answer) rather than pre-systematic or systematic errors, where the real penny-drop moments occur as students realise they’ve been getting it wrong (unconcious incompetence), potentially for a while. I feel like some almost reach a point of correction fatique (irritated student face) at constantly being corrected for the same fossilized error/slip which they never seem to shake. For example, the evil -s ending. That’s not to say it’s not worth correcting these errors but I use this to justify alternative approaches. For example, sticking it in the bank for later focus e.g. aiming for automaticity through drilling, transcription to highlight repeated errors etc. The problem is it’s tough for less experienced teachers or those not familiar with the L1 to recognise what type of error they’re dealing with and be selective, particularly as ones man’s slip might be another mans error. Has your reading lead you to believe on the spot correction is still the best fix?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Wow, thanks for that. So much great sharing and reflecting. I’m rushed with work to do so I’ll be back to really get into this but I just wanted to say that what you bring up re: the character/category of ‘error’ is important. It’s something our presentation didn’t chose to cover for various (important, I think, and hope to explain soon) reasons. “Correction fatigue” is also something I really like that you bring up! As well as perhaps the most common ‘error’ (let’s hope Diane Larsen-Freeman isn’t reading this as I continue to employ old-school terminology) the 3rd person singular -s issue, which has been refered to as “the little despot”. There are issues context and learning objectives, and of EFL vs. ELF in connection to this stuff, I think. And I agree about the difficulties for less experienced teachers; familiarity with an L1 is just the beginning, perhaps!

      All of this and your question at the end begs more when I have time. See you soonish! 🙂

      In the meantime, any other thoughts being thunked and experiences being experied should be unhesitantily shared! (correct THAT!) 😛

      Liked by 1 person

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