Peer Review Sheet for Public History Review Project

In this assignment you will turn your analytical reading skills to your peer’s drafted Public History Review Project.


Learning Objectives

  • To provide thoughtful and thorough feedback to your partner and their co-authors
  • To offer analysis of the content and organization of the draft
  • To provide concrete suggestions for improvement


  • Write a single-spaced letter to your Peer Review partner that offers them feedback on their drafted essay.
  • Make sure to include answers to all the questions below. You should write *at least* one paragraph per question.


Week 12 -  Bring two hard copies of your own second draft to class, Tuesday, Nov. 13; and upload a copy to Dropbox

Week 12 –  Bring two copies of your Peer Review Letter to class on Thursday, Nov. 15; and upload a copy to Dropbox.



Grading will be according to the distributed rubric. Your individual Peer Review will compose 10% of your individual final grade for your Project Review. The revised Project Review counts for 30% of your course grade.


Questions for your Letter

1. Give a basic overview of the project under review

a. What is the topic(s) and genre(s) of public history project under review?

b. How did this project come to be? Is it part of a larger movement, organization, or group?

c. Can you tell who created it and who runs it now, e.g. professionals, volunteers?

d. Can you tell how it is funded?


2. How does this project teach visitors about the past?

a. What history (time period/theme/topic) is presented?

b. What methods are used to engage visitors?

c. Does this project focus on a particular audience?

d. Does the project assume that the visitor already has any knowledge on the topic?


3. What are the criteria the authors are using to evaluate this project?

a. Do they reference any sources for their evaluation criteria?

b. Do the authors think this is a successful project? Why or why not?

c. Do they have any suggestions for ways the project might improve its presentation?


4. Relationship of this project to assigned readings

a. Are there places in the draft where references to the assigned readings could help you understand the topic, genre, or context of the project under review?

b. Are there places in the draft where the assigned readings could help support the authors’ explanation or evaluation of the project?

c. Are there any assigned readings that the authors could consider a model for their review?


5. Incorporation of Research

a. Are there places where the authors’ research is valuable to your understanding?

b. Are there places where additional research would help the author support their argument or improve your understanding?


6. Argument and Evidence

a. Restate the authors’ thesis in your own words. What is the main argument being made?

b. What was the most effective example used? The least effective example?


7. Clarity

a. Were there any places in the paper that were confusing to you as a reader?

b. What suggestions do you have or questions can you ask to help the authors improve their clarity?

c. Do you have any suggestions to improve the structure or organization of the review?


8. Mechanics

a. Were there any places where grammar or sentence structure made it difficult for you to understand?

b. How well are citations used in this paper? If you needed to check on the authors’ paraphrases, summaries, or quotes, could you easily locate them? Are there any areas that need more citations? Are there any formatting issues in the footnotes or bibliography?


9. Suggestions for improvement

a. What would you like to hear more about in the final version?

b. In your opinion, what are the most important revisions that the authors should make for the final version of this paper?


Rubric for Peer Review


  • Evidence of thorough and conscientious effort
  • Good analysis of peer’s paper
  • Concrete suggestions for improvement


  • Evidence of effort
  • Fair to good analysis of peer’s paper
  • Concrete suggestions for improvement


  • Evidence of some effort
  • Developing an analysis of peer’s paper
  • Only a few suggestions for improvement


  • Evidence of minimal effort
  • Limited analysis of peer’s paper
  • Only vague or rote suggestions for improvement


  • No evidence of effort
  • Unfocused analysis or peer’s paper
  • No suggestions or only rote suggestions for improvement

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