Skip to main content

Providing Feedback to Students in an Online Course

How do you usually provide feedback for your students in your online course? Do you use MS Word documents and “track changes” or create “new comments”? Do you return your feedback using the Moodle assignment tool? Providing feedback to students is an integral part of the process of teaching and learning. Today, I’ll share a couple of ideas about some possible time-saving solutions when providing feedback on student assignments.


Have you heard about Jing? Jing is a screencasting tool available for download from TechSmith. The free version of Jing allows you to create a five (5) minute video (.swf). There are so many ways that Jing can be used. For example, if you have installed Jing and have the student’s paper open in MS Word you can capture your screen, provide verbal feedback and then save your movie. You can also use Jing as you provide verbal comments on a student essay created in Google docs. See examples of ways in which Jing is used.

Jing and the Moodle Assignment Tool

To return your feedback (video) to the student, use the Moodle Assignment tool. You will need to take note of a couple of things when you first set up the assignment.  First of all, choose the “advanced uploading of assignments” feature when you create your Moodle assignment. Now, increase the maximum size for file upload and be sure that you enable “send for marking”. A tutorial is available to assist you as you access the student’s assignment in the Moodle grade book, upload the .swf file with your feedback and then send it to your student.

Adobe Acrobat X Pro

You can also provide auditory feedback using the comments feature in Adobe Acrobat X Pro.  First of all, set up an assignment using the Moodle assignment tool. Once again choose the “advanced uploading of assignments” feature and enable send for marking when you create the Moodle assignment.

Have the student…

  1. Create his/her paper in an MS Word document
  2. Save his/her MS Word document as a .PDF (Save as Adobe .PDF)
  3. Upload his/her file to the Moodle assignment you created.

Now that your students have uploaded their assignments. Access them through the Moodle grade book and download them to your desktop.

Now you are ready to use Adobe Acrobat X Pro to provide audio comments for students. After you have added your comments and saved the file, you can upload the .PDF with your audio comments using the same process as we did when we sent the .swf (video) back to the student.