One Minute Paper

What is it?

One Minute Paper provides a quick and extremely simple way to collect written feedback on student learning. Students are asked one or two questions and are required to write answers in a very short space of time.

Why use it?

One Minute Paper can be used to:

  • open discussion for a new topic

  • check for understanding and retention of material

  • regain focus during a lecture or tutorial

  • drive home the key point/s

How does it work?

Ask students to write down any ideas about a particular topic/issue/ problem. They can list single words, write in point form, or use diagrams or images. Using sticky notes allows students to move the ideas around and put them into themes.


  • Set aside five to ten minutes of your class to run the One Minute Paper, as well as time later to discuss the results.

  • Before class, write questions on the whiteboard or include them in a PowerPoint presentation.

  • At a convenient time, hand out index cards or scrap paper. Unless there is a very good reason to know who wrote what, direct students to leave their names off the papers or cards.

  • Alternatively, set up a Padlet board prior to class where students can respond online. This tool can be used for online or face to face classes

  • Let the students know how much time they will have (two to five minutes per question is usually enough), what kinds of answers you want (words, phrases, or short sentences), and when they can expect your feedback.


This resource is based on the “Not a waste of space” project materials produced by RMIT University and the University of Melbourne, with the support of the Australian Government Office for Learning and Teaching. Used under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License. Except where otherwise noted, this content is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.