I have, to be honest, when I first learned that I was going to have to take communications, I was not impressed. Previously in my college career at Sir Sandford Fleming I was exempt from communications. Back then, it was a test and if you passed you got exempt. Now you have to pay to get exempt and no refund if you fail the test. I can’t afford that. So I begrudgingly proceeded to endeavour in Communications 201. As I progressed in writing during the course, it was the feedback I received that helped me progress and grow as a writer. In the interest of fairness to the person who is proofreading my piece, this paragraph is not directed at you. It is just my frustration with my past peer evaluations. I found the process to be useless. The people assigned to proofread my work didn’t take the time to review. One out of four did the task. I had to go find my own. And a narrative on how good my piece was, is not proper feedback. I was hoping for some constructive criticism. Pointing out errors so that I could make changes. I found I got most of my critical feedback from my instructor. It just seemed like a waste of time in my opinion. So I will not be including a whole lot of peer feedback, unfortunately. But, saying that, I did use feedback from my instructor to help in both of my pieces “This I Believe” and our profile assignment that was recently handed in.
One of the main revisions I did on my, This I Believe assignment was from instructor feedback. “As your reader, I am left wanting a wrap-up statement at the end where you bring me back to your “I believe” statement. Could you do that?”. If that had not been brought to my attention, I would never have revised that portion of the assignment. It was in my final version feedback that I knew the change was noticed and noted in the feedback; “The final version does offer evidence of reflection on the feedback given for your 2nd draft; e.g., the end lacks a full-circle wrap-up to leave your reader with your final “this I believe” point”.
I found most of my feedback came from my blog writing. The continual positive feedback about, “Your voice is authentic and engaging, and the writing is easy to read.” Numerous times it was stated that I “have an authentic and honest voice”. Which I used to improve my confidence in my writing.
The instructor feedback for my profile assignment helped me to make some critical changes before I submitted my final draft. The idea that I was presenting it as an assignment rather than a profile was pointed out to me, “Do not write “I chose to interview Laura”. The idea is that it’s a profile … not to be presented as an assignment.” This was critical feedback that set me back on the right track. Also, pointing out that a closer edit was needed for mistakes; “I look forward to reading your final version which should reflect a closer edit where you have corrected spelling / grammar / word choice / sentence errors.”
Feedback has given me the tools to become a better writer. Whether it be from blogs, assignments or in my other courses as a whole. We can only grow and change if we have our positive or negative aspects pointed out. Hopefully, we will grow and learn from the feedback we receive in our writing and ultimately in our own life.