Spring 2013 — UC IrvineInformation & Computer ScienceICS 139WDavid G. Kay

Changing the System: Peer Editing Guidelines for the Intro Tutorial

You will edit your assignments in groups of two or three; you should form a group with people who are not familiar with your system, if possible. Take a couple of minutes to identify each other. We will help form groups if necessary.

As you read and comment on each other's papers, keep in mind the purpose and audience of the paper (that is, to introduce their system to people who are new to it).

Each editor will write down his or her comments on the author's paper, guided by the questions below. The editor should be sure to write "Edited by" and his or her name. Each author must turn in the editor's written comments along with the revised version of the paper.

  1. Read your classmate's paper once through without making any comments. Then, write down briefly your first impressions:

    1. How well does it do the job? Does it tell novice users what they need to know about the system? Does it give them enough background and context to get them started learning the details? If you didn't know anything about this system, would this paper help get you started?

    2. Is it well organized and easy to follow?

    3. Do mechanical errors get in the way of reading it?

  2. Read it again, more carefully, making minor comments in the margins. Focus your comments on the organization and content; don't spend much time proofreading for spelling or grammatical errors (which is the author's job).

  3. Write down brief answers to these questions:

    1. What does the author assume the audience already knows? What knowledge do novice users of this system already have, and what do they need to learn?

    2. What are the main points the author teaches the audience?

    3. Does the presentation explain why the reader should want to know these points?

    4. How well do you think the audience will understand those points after reading this introduction?

    5. What would make the presentation more effective?

    6. How is the paper organized? Can you draw a clear outline or flowchart?

      1. What is the point of each paragraph?

      2. Does the opening paragraph engage you and make you want to read further?

      3. Does the closing paragraph summarize what has been explained?

  4. Review your comments with the author (and vice versa). Be sure your name is on your written responses and return them to the author, who must include them with the turned-in version. Likewise, be sure to get the written comments of your editor(s).