Assessment Feedback via Screencast — Examples

A few weeks ago, I wrote a blog post about using Jing to provide assessment feedback to my students. A few readers got back to me and requested examples. In class, I explained to my students that I had blogged about what I was doing, and that some other educators were interested in seeing some examples. I said, “Some folks want to see some examples. I don’t show your last name in the screencast, nor do I speak it, but it’s still your work. If no one feels comfortable sharing, that’s ok. Really. If you don’t mind having your work out there for other educators to see, please let me know.” Well, my students are not as shy as I was at their age, because 66% of my students gave me permission to post a link to a screencast of their work. I am deeply grateful to them.

I selected a few to share with you here. These are fairly strong essays; even with permission, I didn’t feel comfortable putting unsuccessful work out there for everyone to see.¬†First, let me say that you may not agree with my feedback. You may wonder why I noted one thing and not another. You may see errors that are untouched, or you may think that I am being too easy…or too tough. Please know that every assignment has its own parameters. Some of this was timed, in-class writing. Some of this was extended work. I’m looking for certain criteria as I grade, noting whether or not they met the expectations outlined on the assignment sheet. Grading is a tricky task, and I have to admit there is a part of me that is hesitant to put myself out there, but here goes. If my kids are brave enough, well then, so am I. Besides, the goal of posting the work here is to demonstrate the use of screencasting as an assessment tool. It’s powerful.

The examples:

Because of the screencast, I was able to provide detailed feedback about how to fully explain a claim the writer was making.

This is an “A” essay, earning a 93%. I love how the screencast made it possible for me to explain that grade a little more specifically.

This is an example of the first essay of the year. I love how I was able to compliment the writer on her work so far, while noting how she could improve.

In the next example, I was able to pinpoint a few specific sentences that would benefit from revision, and explain why. Instead of just marking an error, I can explain a solution.

Thanks again to my students for putting themselves out there. I absolutely adore teaching these interesting, quirky, funny, talented, and bright young people — every single one of them impresses me in some way. I hope that my feedback helps them grow as writers, and I hope they remember my classroom as a pleasant place of learning.

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11 Responses to Assessment Feedback via Screencast — Examples

  1. Sharee Darce says:

    Thank you so much. This really helps me understand exactly how it was done. Hope to show this to my fellow teachers and get them thinking how we can do this. We work with deaf students and want to do something similar incorporating ASL movies in some way with the comments.

  2. Jennifer Thomas says:

    I train adults, and part of that process is giving competency tests for software skills.

    I think that our audience would like this method of feedback because there is often more than one way to do something (so their method may not be completely wrong) and this is an easy way to give a personalized comment about the reason for our ‘best practice’ recommendations with specific reference to their type of work product.

    Thanks for the inspiration — you must be a wonderful teacher!

  3. msarnold says:

    Hi, I don’t see a scroll option in Jing. Just a screen capture. Were you using Snagit?

    • atapp says:

      I do my screencasting on a Mac, so I use the built-in features for that. I do have Camtasia for Mac, as well (Techsmith’s more feature-rich product), and that allows me to do additional tricks after recording. I find that for most screencasting, I don’t need advanced editing, but it’s nice to have it when I so need it.

      • Kristin says:

        Hi. I hope you still check these . . . As an English teacher, too, I am inspired by what you’re doing here. I also use a Mac, and I’m just wondering what you mean by built-in features on the Mac? What is the name of the feature? When I type screencast into my Mac help tab, nothing comes up. Also, if you are using your Mac to do most of your recording, does that mean you are not technically using Jing but are mostly using to share what you’ve created? If you have time, I’d love these answers. Thanks!

      • atapp says:

        Hi, Kristin. Thanks for the comment. The built-in feature on the Mac is Quicktime Player. Once you launch that app, you can go to “File – New Screen Recording.” There is a little drop-down arrow you need to click to turn on your microphone, but once you do that, you can screencast the whole screen. It’s not as versatile as Jing/Snag-It/Camtasia, etc., but it works. As for your other question, Jing and are companions. When you create your Jing account, you are automatically creating a account, and when you upload from Jing, the recording goes directly into a private-by-default folder at Only those with whom you share the link will be able to see the recording, making it the perfect solution for assessment feedback. I use Jing. My students, when they screencast, use Quicktime Player. We have played around with Snag-it, but in the classroom, the features tend to confuse more than enhance. I want my students to focus on content and show me what they know. We don’t need to do fancy editing to accomplish that. If you have any other questions, let me know, and best wishes as you tackle new technologies!

  4. Maryann Saylor says:

    Hello, Aly. Thanks so much for posting this information! I am also an English teacher who was directed to your blog by our resident tech expert, Charlie Reisinger. I am not nearly as tech savvy as you are, but I’m working on it! I have thought for years that my conferences with students were far more valuable than the symbols and scribbles I penned on their drafts. Granted, papers with these marks are more easily portable and accessible since they do not require an electronic device to access them, but then my remarks on those paper drafts are also more easily lost, misunderstood, disregarded, and ignored. Recently, I began exploring ways to provide verbal feedback electronically, so the information you’ve posted here is invaluable to me. One of my goals, along with providing more in-depth and useful feedback, is to save time, so, at this point in time, I do not plan to type responses and provide verbal comments as well. I may highlight words, sentences or paragraphs and then comment on them verbally, but unless someone comes up with a MUCH MUCH faster method for adding typed comments in googledocs (or anywhere else, for that matter), I’m skipping them.

    I am open to any input you care to offer. While you probably didn’t intend for your blog post (and all of your subsequent posts of samples) to be so instructive or useful, I have to tell you unequivocally that they are. Thank you, thank you!

    • atapp says:

      Maryann, thanks for the feedback. You are quite lucky to work with Charlie. He is top notch, in my opinion! I only add the written comments to guide my verbal comments, and I hope that with time I get better at all this. The students really do love this kind of feedback, and their reactions are motivating. Good luck! If you have any questions, you know where to find me. :)

  5. Love this — every student can hear your (detailed, personal, meaningful) feedback at one time, replay it later, show mom & dad, etc.

  6. Pingback: Do you speak MOOC? | Gretel Patch: EdTech Learning Log

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