What is Buddycheck?

Buddycheck is a peer evaluation tool, where group members assess each other’s contribution to a group assessment task. Staff can use these tools to address common group project issues, such as dysfunctional groups, social loafing and the inequities of awarding equal marks for unequal contributions.

Why are we deploying Buddycheck?

To facilitate group work/projects within multiple courses, UQ was using GPAT (Group Peer Assessment Tool) - a UQ-developed tool based on Blackboard Building Block technology. The vendor decomissioned this technology at the end of 2023. As a result, the current tool is unavailable for use from the beginning of 2024 and a replacement tool was needed to be piloted and, depending on the pilot results, deployed.

Why has UQ chosen to pilot Buddycheck?

Consultations were held with GPAT stakeholders to gather requirements which were shared and refined. An environment scan was conducted to identify solution options, with the leading candidate being Buddycheck https://www.buddycheck.io/.

Please visit Group Peer Assessment Tool Replacement project page for more information. 

Buddycheck has a very similar functionality to GPAT in that it allows

  1. students to evaluate contributions of individual group members to a group assessment task,
  2. collects student responses to calculate either an average or PAF (Peer Assessment Factor) score and facilitates the moderation of results and return of feedback to students,  
  3. system moderation functionality is limited to either removing all responses of a student from the calculation (i.e., if the student is trying to game the results) or requiring students to resubmit their response (i.e., unjustified responses). 

The complete Buddycheck solution as a replacement to GPAT was based on the vendor completing custom development work, namely: adding functionality to enable staff to moderate student scores; functionality to distribute the marks between the students (divided points).

Buddycheck includes additional functionality not available in the current tool including:

  1. a library of evaluations questions to reduce staff assessment setup workload,
  2. graphical de-identified feedback to students on their performance and
  3. an option to allow students to provide anonymous feedback to their peers. 

Buddycheck aligns with University Strategy. UQ’s strategic plan included the desire to transform “our student experience through a flexible, integrated and partnered learning environment”. Buddycheck supports this strategy by retaining peer evaluation functionality to support group assessment and allowing further adoption of this capability. 

Buddycheck aligns with ITS Strategy. Assessing Buddycheck as a replacement for the UQ-developed GPAT aligns with the ITS goal of “implementing teaching and learning capabilities – at a cost that UQ can sustain”. This off-the-shelf solution instead of redeveloping GPAT in-house also aligns with the ITS strategy to “only construct and customise systems if doing so creates a competitive advantage”. 

Can I continue to use the Group Peer Assessment tool? 

No, the current Group Peer Assessment tool is no longer available and a replacement tool - Buddycheck- is available at the start of 2024.

Staff communications

  • 16 January 2023: A reminder email sent to potential piloteers.
  • 15 December 2022: Call for piloteers: an email was sent to the Course Coordinators who participated in GPAT consultations.
  • 20 July 2023: Email to current GPAT users informing that GPAT is turned off for S2 2023 courses and encouraging to transition to Buddycheck.

Project timeline

  • December 2022 - January 2023: Call for piloteers: an email was sent to the Course Coordinators who participated in GPAT consultations.
  • February 2023: Selected courses are accepted as piloteers.
  • February 2023: Development of S1 High priority resources: staff and student guides
  • March 2023: Pilot briefing meetings with piloteers
  • March 2023: Workshop (individual or group) to present the functionality of the new system.
  • March 2023: Library AskUs training on student support
  • March 2023: Individual consultations to set up a formative mid-project check-in peer assessment
  • April 2023: Individual consultations post formative peer assessment
  • April 2023: Individual consultation to set up a summative end-of-project peer assessment
  • May 2023: Individual consultations post summative peer assessment
  • May 2023: Student survey
  • May 2023: Staff feedback session and survey completion
  • June 2023: Results evaluation
  • June 2023: Staff and student guides updated based on feedback
  • June 2023: Pilot report composed.
  • June - August 2023: 6 x workshops
  • December 2023 - extended pilot completed
  • 1 January 2024 - onwards: Buddycheck deployment - the platform is available to all UQ courses.