I Heard, I Noticed, I Wondered

I Heard, I Noticed, I Wondered

One way to avoid the pitfalls of peer review is to use the "I heard, I noticed, I wondered" method. With these prompts, you can provide useful feedback to a writer without being too biting in your criticism.

I heard...

As a reviewer, first try to summarize what you think the piece was about. This is the easy part. Tell the writer what you saw as the story or the main idea. As a writer, listen to this section, and try to hear whether or not you communicated what you were trying to communicate.

I noticed...

As a reviewer, tell the author about some of the things that attracted your attention. What worked well? What details seemed especially vivid or striking? What will you remember about this paper? As a writer, think about why the reviewer noticed these things, and how you can make all your writing as effective.

I wondered...

As a reviewer, did you have any questions when you finished reading? Did you not understand what something meant, or why it was included? Did something bother or disturb you? Did you suspect something might have worked better another way? This section is your chance to ask the writer all these questions. As a writer, try to answer the reviewer's questions. Look at your writing again, and see if there is any way to make those points clearer to a reader.

An example of an email peer review from a classmate.

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