Evaluating the Use of Automated Feedback on Student Motivation

  • Leah Simpson University of Kentucky
  • Mikael Jones University of Kentucky, College of Pharmacy
  • Stacy Taylor University of Kentucky, College of Pharmacy
Keywords: Motivation, Feedback, Self-Determination Theory, ExamSoft


Objective: Autonomy-support and quality feedback have been shown to significantly impact student learning. Unfortunately, quality feedback is often very time consuming. The goal of this study was to examine the autonomy-supportive potential from feedback provided via technology, specifically the ExamSoft Strength and Opportunities report.

Methods: Students were divided into two groups: one received enhanced performance feedback via the ExamSoft Strength and Opportunities report, the other received traditional grade-only feedback in the form of grades and course averages, via ExamSoft. The Learning Self-Regulation Survey (SRQ-L) was administered to 139 third-year doctor of pharmacy students. The survey contained 14 statements asking students to rate their reasons (relative autonomy) for reviewing ExamSoft feedback, three items related to use of the ExamSoft technology, and five demographic items.

Results: A statistical difference, t(52) = -2.07, p =0.043; d = .577, was reported between the two groups indicating enhanced feedback via ExamSoft had a moderate impact on students’ autonomy.

Conclusions: Students who received enhanced ExamSoft feedback reported significantly higher relative autonomy index (RAI) for feedback review than students who did not receive the feedback. This suggests that the enhanced ExamSoft feedback was autonomy-supportive.


Conflict of Interest: None

Treatment of Human Subjects: IRB review/approval required and obtained


Type: Original Research


Download data is not yet available.
Received 2017-12-20
Accepted 2018-04-26
Published 2018-06-05