Using the iPeer LMS Feature to Evaluate Peer Participation in Teamwork for Assessment “as learning”: Lessons Learned

  • Adriana BothaEmail author
  • Riana Steyn
  • Lizette Weilbach
  • Erika Muller
Conference paper
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 11284)


The competency gap between the teamwork skills of undergraduate students and that, which is required by employers, has caused many undergraduate programmes within a faculty at an urban University in South Africa to introduce learning outcomes, which focus specifically on teamwork skills and student participation within teams. Despite the provision of well-designed rubrics, module lecturers and support staff reported to still have limited control over team dynamics and outcomes of peer assessments. The educational consultant at this University identified the iPeer tool for formative assessment of teamwork participation within the official LMS of the institution. The paper illustrates that iPeer provides module lecturers with the opportunity to utilise technology for assessment ‘as learning’. An iPeer research collaborative team was established and some module lecturers opted to pilot the tool as part of their large group projects.

The purpose of this paper is to share with other academics the lessons learned from implementing the iPeer tool to create an awareness of the online technology available to assist with peer participation evaluation challenges. This is done by reporting on the insights gained from the pilot projects, with the aim of sharing assessment possibilities that could influence individual behaviour in teams and as a result contribute to improved teamwork skills such as communication, collaboration and the ability to meet team deadlines. The learning is based on peer feedback which is readily available to all team members.


Peer participation evaluation (PPE) Teamwork skills Assessment as learning LMS feature iPeer tool 



A big thank you to Lisa Ransom from the Centre for Learning and Teaching at the Auckland University of Technology, who shared her insights and students’ feedback with us.

A special thank you to Lucas du Plessis and Saija Bezuidenhout from our University for their invaluable support for and feedback on this project.


  1. 1.
    Lingard, R.W.: Teaching and assessing teamwork skills in engineering and computer science. Syst. Cybern. Inform. 8, 34–37 (2010)Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Martinez, M.L., Romero, G., Marquez, J.J., Perez, J.M.: Integrating teams in multidisciplinary project based learning in mechanical engineering. In: Proceedings of the IEEE EDUCON 2010 Conference, pp. 709–715 (2010)Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    Kashefi, H.K., Ismail, Z., Yusof, Y.M.: The impact of blended learning on communication skills and teamwork of engineering students in multivariable calculus. Procedia – Soc. Behav. Sci. 56, 342–347 (2012)Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    Isaac, T.S., Kolawole, O.J., Funsho, A.A.G., Adesiji, O.J.: Reviewing engineering curricula to meet industrial and societal needs. In: Proceedings of the IEEE International Conference on Interactive Collaborative Learning (ICL), pp. 55–59 (2014)Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    Ercan, M.F., Khan, R.: Teamwork as a fundamental skill for engineering graduates. In: 2017 IEEE International Conference on Teaching, Assessment, and Learning for Engineering (TALE) (2017)Google Scholar
  6. 6.
    Robles, M.M.: Executive perceptions of the top 10 soft skills needed in today’s work-place. Bus. Commun. Q. 75, 453–465 (2012)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. 7.
    ECSA: Engineering Council of South Africa: Standards and Procedures System (ECSA), South Africa (2018)Google Scholar
  8. 8.
  9. 9.
    Kollar, I., Fischer, F.: Peer assessment as collaborative learning a cognitive perspective. Learn. Instr. 20, 344–348 (2012)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. 10.
    Bauer, M., Brooks, S.B., Dandrock, C.: 19th World Congress the International Federation of Automatic Control Cape Town (2014)Google Scholar
  11. 11.
    Johnson, D.W., Johnson, R.T., Smith, K.: Cooperative learning: improving university instruction by basing practice on validated theory. J. Excellence Univ. Teach. 1–26 (2013)Google Scholar
  12. 12.
    Gueldenzoph, L.E., May, G.L.: Collaborative peer evaluation: best practises for group member assessment. Bus. Commun. Q. 65, 9–20 (2002)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. 13.
    Johnson, D.W., Johnson, R.T., Smith, K.A.: Cooperative learning returns to college: what evidence is there that it works? Change 30(4), 27–35 (1998)Google Scholar
  14. 14.
    Liu, N., Carless, D.: Peer feedback: the learning element of peer assessment. Teach. High. Educ. 11, 270–290 (2006)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. 15.
    Cho, K., MacArthur, C.: Student revision with peer and expert reviewing. Learn. Instr. 2, 328–338 (2010)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. 16.
    Gupta, K.: Assessment as learning. Sci. Teach. 83, 43–47 (2016)Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of InformaticsUniversity of PretoriaPretoriaSouth Africa
  2. 2.Department of ENGAGEUniversity of PretoriaPretoriaSouth Africa

Personalised recommendations