I learned to actually read my own work. If I treated my own words as the words of someone else, I found that I had more advice to give on how to edit. Also, I had a difficult time critiquing others works as well. I would merely just attempt to give them good advice. What I lacked was relevant feedback to my peers. Sure, it was good advice. But why was this advice good? Why was I advising my peers to this advice? Those are the questions that I now answer when critiquing. Learning how to keep my feedback relevant as well as adding new information was a hard concept for me to grasp. I would constantly go back to the teacher's original post to make sure I was answering all the questions accurately.
After fully experiencing peer review in an on-line setting, I learned that looking back to the assignment helps. When writing peer reviews for others, I found it easier to read the assignment to know exactly what the professor is looking for. That way, I would still give advice, and it would still be relevant, unlike grammatical errors (which are important, however other things are more important). I have a deep understanding of what a good review entails – quality advice. The knowledge that I have learned through these past few weeks I will continue to use in the future. I’m always trying to critically think about most things, and I realize now that I was thinking too much about grammar mistakes and not enough content mistakes. I started to edit my peer’s papers thinking about whole paragraphs rather than sentences. I also began searching for things such as topic sentences, whether the sentences flowed, and if information was used accurately. Thinking of an essay as a whole rather then step-by-step has enabled me to make quality comments and relay information about their entire works.