Sommers studied the comments and feedback that 35 university instructors gave to a set of undergrad essays. Her conclusions?
- Comments and feedback are often overly focused on microlevel issues (commas, sentence structure, etc.) and amount to editing and proofreading on the instructor's part.
- Instructors give contradictory advice. For instance, instructors critique the grammar of a paragraph while then suggesting that the paragraph is irrelevant anyway and should be omitted.
- When focusing on macro issues, instructors repeatedly give the same vague advice, advice students do not necessarily know how to implement.