Part 3: Corrective Feedback with CRM

In part 2 (read it here) we discussed the importance of classroom climate. Successive Relearning with both (CRM) and more recently the RememberMore app, is designed to promote a positive and secure learning climate and utilise learner success to generate learner confidence and application. CRM chemistry of both direct and indirect effects led Ben to frame these summative benefits as the Deadpool Effect.

Two parts psychological security (the correct answer is always provided) + one part student agency (self-marking and correction) + one part low stakes (retrieval not assessment) = Deadpool Effect.

Gif Deadpool — deadpooli: wade + maximum effort
Preserving the Deadpool Effect of 100% maximum effort

The Deadpool Effect being the ethos and climate that encourages our students to learn more, know more and readily apply themselves in lessons more fully as a result. 

Psychological Safety and Student Agency vs Desirable Difficulties

We know that high success rates and corrective feedback are incredibly important in retrieval practice.

 “…although failed retrieval attempts may show modest memorial benefits (e.g., Kornell, Hays, & Bjork, 2009), retrieval practice is particularly efficacious when retrieval attempts during encoding are successful (e.g., Karpicke & Roediger, 2007; Pyc & Rawson, 2007, 2011).”

Teaching (more instruction than teaching) with CRM encourages high success rates; tags promote retrieval and enable simplified questioning. It is very flexible, with Reorder recently added to make success even more attainable.. Success is unavoidable, it is baked in. CRM is not “an assessment,” nor is it “quizzing,” as the correct response is always shown. Learners know and expect it. As teachers, we teach learners to pay attention to it, we teach them how to use it. Successive Relearning, re-exposure to the correct answer – is corrective feedback. Of note, is that is also available to the teacher – for further elaborative interrogation and teaching. 

It is also important to maintain a level of challenge and CRM offers a number of options; a greater number of questions, mode, time and also increasing the deck or breadth of content the prompts are drawn from. Importantly, Ben offered warning of a few important pitfalls to be aware of.

Once you have built momentum, protect it. How we feedback while using CRM, particularly after extending a deck and introducing new content / unfamiliar questions is a time for caution.

Students on their first attempt with a widened pool of questions
  1. Interleave the new with the old. 
  2. Small increments. (Use Reorder rather than Refresh)
  3. More time (and encouragement) to “think hard” during the practice. 
  4. Pre-warn the students – mitigate expectations. 
  5. Extend the feedback session.

We should note here that the RememberMore app is adaptive and offers all these minor adjustments and more, at an individual learner level.

Having gradually extended the deck, I was now widening the question deck to include all 7 Roman Kings – some 100 questions. A significant breadth of knowledge.

Mixing the old with the new content is so simple with CRM. I then pre-warned the students and reset the expectations of both their approach and expected success.

“Some questions may be unfamiliar, some of you may not have answers to ‘all’ the questions…”

“You may already have seen some of these questions before today – that’s exactly the point. We build upon your knowledge.”

“We will find the answers together, just continue to think hard.”

“You may see your scores dip – this should be expected. But don’t be disheartened. You’ve already seen what you’re able to do.”

Preserving and protecting the psychological security when upping the challenge on CRM

One of the key responsibilities of the teacher is to protect and preserve learner confidence. A difficult line is trodden between increasing challenge, and maintaining the psychological security that is so ingrained in the processes.

Tune in for Part 4 – where we will explore the use of Elaborative Feedback with CRM.

Cross-posted with Kristian Still – Teacher of English (@KristianStill)

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