Designing learner-centred text-based feedback: a rapid review and qualitative synthesis

Tracii Ryan, Michael Henderson, Kris Ryan, Gregor Kennedy

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


Current conceptualisations of feedback contend that it should be a learner-centred process. In practice, however, text-based feedback comments from teachers are a convenient and common source of feedback information, despite appearing to be contra-indicative of learner-centred models. This raises the question of how teachers can tackle the design of text-based learner-centred feedback, but at present there is limited empirical evidence available to answer this question. In response, we conducted a rapid review and qualitative synthesis of 95 peer-reviewed scholarly publications on feedback, and appraised the results through the lens of four diverse conceptualisations of learner-centred feedback. This process led to the development of a framework of 12 learner-centred design attributes for text-based feedback, which were organised around three layers of design: contexts, characteristics and components. Each of these design attributes are discussed and practical recommendations are synthesised from the literature. Areas in need of additional empirical research are also highlighted.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)894-912
Number of pages19
JournalAssessment & Evaluation in Higher Education
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 2021


  • Assessment feedback
  • feedback design
  • learner-centred feedback
  • rapid systematic review

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