Lorin Koch

Date of Award

Fall 2021

Document Type

Open Access Dissertation


Educational Studies

First Advisor

James D. Kirylo


The purpose of this study was to examine the effects of a novel strategy for peer editing of student essays in a high school English language arts classroom. The peer editing method used in this study provided more positive feedback to lower-level writers and more negative feedback to higher-level writers, with grade-level writers getting a blend of both positive and negative feedback. Incorporating an action research design, this study included data collection through student standardized test scores, student writing samples, comments left on other students’ papers, responses to peer editing sessions, and individual interviews. Qualitative data were collected over the course of 8 weeks of class time, with students writing and peer editing three essays. Participants consisted of six students in Grades 11 and 12 at a private Christian high school in Oregon. The results of the study demonstrated that students appreciated positive feedback, although most said they did not expect or need positivity in tone. Results also included a complex picture of the benefits and challenges of the social aspects of peer editing. The results informed an action plan to help more students get more useful feedback from their classmates through peer editing.