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Two students exchanging feedback on work

Research question

How do students and supervisors understand formative feedback in a supervision context, and what do they consider to be helpful and unhelpful practices in terms of supporting students' mental health and academic performance?


Project team

  • Olivia Lavigne, undergraduate student reading Management Studies
  • Mithiran Ravindran, undergraduate student reading English
  • Johanna Newnham, undergraduate student reading Education


Project report



This project aimed to identify what undergraduate students and supervisors of undergraduates perceive to be helpful modes of formative feedback to support students' mental health and academic performance. Overall, formative feedback was perceived as supportive for academic performance when detailed, actionable and tailored, thus boosting students' motivation. Student mental health was perceived to be related to students' academic performance, and the role of feedback was therefore deemed to be important to supporting students' overall wellbeing and engagement with supervisions. While both students and staff generally agreed on what constituted important forms of feedback, there were discrepancies in the perceived beneficial role of peer feedback within and outside of supervisions. Most student and staff respondents disclosed that additional guidance, resources and training opportunities on how to utilise feedback effectively would be beneficial.