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Written feedback and deep approaches to student learning: Contradictory or complimentary?This paper is concerned with the use of written feedback provided to students following both formative and summative assessment exercises and asks the if written feedback is commensurate with the notion of engendering, and or maintaining, a deep approach to student learning. I argue that for written feedback to be complimentary to a deep approach to learning students need to be able to correctly interpret tutors written comments and that students should be actively engaged in analytical and reflective activities. My argument is based upon current literature and a research project conducted with a group of students who are undertaking a post graduate programme. To address these issues I suggest that departments explore the opportunities students have for gaining access to the language of higher education and that research is conducted to ascertain the extent to which written feedback is commenting upon the intellectual content of students’ assessment activities and tasks. In addition a tool constructed by Weedon (2000), that seeks to engage students in analytical and reflective activities with regard to the written feedback they receive should be developed and contextualised for use within specific programmes and modules.