Abstract: Peer advising in education, which involves students providing fellow students with course advice, can be important in online student communities and can provide insights into potential course improvements. We examine reviews from a course review web site for online graduate programs. We develop a coding scheme to analyze the free text portion of the reviews and integrate those findings with students’ quantitative ratings of each course’s overall score, difficulty, and workload. While reviews focus on subjective evaluation of courses, students also provide feedback for instructors, personal context, advice for other students, and objective course descriptions. Additionally, the average review varies by course overall score, difficulty, and workload. Our research examines the importance of student communities in online education and peer advising at scale.
The full paper “Peer Advising at Scale: Content and Context of a Learner-Owned Course Evaluation System” can be found here.