Contact sales

Feedback that sparks achievement

Research reveals that giving students feedback directly contributes to their level of achievement, but are students valuing the feedback they receive?

Educators understand that providing feedback to students is an essential component of the learning process. Feedback has the potential to increase motivation, build on past knowledge, and help students become more independent and self-sufficient learners.

A significant amount of research has explored how teachers can deliver feedback effectively and the affect this feedback has on student progress. The following statistics provide a snapshot of just a small portion of this research:


  • After an analysis of over 8,000 studies, John Hattie concluded: “The most powerful single modification that enhances achievement is feedback.” (Marzano, Pickering & Pollock, 2001)
  • Academic feedback has the strongest relationship to achievement when compared to any other teaching behaviour. (Bellon, Bellon & Blank, 2002)
  • Grade, socioeconomic status, race and/or school setting do not affect the consistent relationship between feedback and achievement. (Bellon, Bellon & Blank, 2002)
  • “When feedback and corrective procedures are used, most students can attain the same level of achievement as the top 20% of students.” (Bellon, Bellon & Blank, 2002)
  • Feedback is ranked within the top 5 influences of student achievement alongside direct instruction and reciprocal teaching. (Hattie & Timperley, 2007)

Do students want to receive feedback? Do they find it helpful in understanding their progress?  

So far, the relationship between feedback and student achievement has been the focal point of research. However, there has been very little investigation into students’ perspectives. Do students want to receive feedback? Do they find it helpful in understanding their progress?  

DigiExam surveyed 60 students across 5 universities trying to discover the answers to these questions. While we only began to scratch the surface surrounding student’s perceptions, the results seem clear so far. Students want to receive feedback.

  • 98% of students feel that it is important to receive feedback from their instructor.
  • 92% of students say that feedback helps them better understand their progress within courses.
  • 87% of students would prefer to receive their results and feedback online.
  • 50% of students report receiving feedback from their instructors within 2 weeks, while just 38% of students receive feedback within 1 week. The remaining 12% typically receive feedback within one month.

It seems fair to say that students find feedback necessary in order to help them understand how they are progressing within their course work. So how can teachers make sure they are delivering it effectively?

Over the next several weeks, we’ll be sharing a series of blogposts that will reveal tips for providing feedback and spotlight teachers who strive to make their students active participants in the feedback process.

DigiExam can help you provide personalised feedback to your students immediately.  Sign up for a free teacher account and give it a try!


Sign up for free



  • Bellon, Jerry, Bellon, Elner, & Blank, Mary Ann. (1992). Teaching from a Research Knowledge Base: A Development and Renewal Process. New York: Macmillan Publishing.
  • Marzano, Robert, Pickering, Debra, & Pollock, J.  (2001).  Classroom Instruction that Works: Research- Based Strategies for Increasing Student Achievement.  Alexandria, VA: Association of Supervision and Curriculum Development.
  • Hattie, John, & Timperley, Helen. (2007). “The Power of Feedback.” Review of Educational Research, 77 (1), 81-112.
Digital Examinations, EdTech, News