A stack of psychology exam essays has just landed on my desk for marking. It was a 3 hour exam with 3 essay questions. This is a final year essay so I do not have to provide written feedback. How long should I be spending marking an essay?
I don't work in a field with essay exams, but I do ask my students to write proofs, so maybe my advice is still useful.
TAs at my university are contractually limited to at most 20 hours of work per week. You have 60 exams to grade in one week; that suggests an absolute limit of 20 minutes per exam. Since each exam has three essays, I would aim to spend at most 5 minutes per essay. It'll probably take longer at first, especially if you also have to develop a rubric, but you'll get faster as you work through the pile. Aiming for 5 minutes leaves you lots of slack.
Also, I strongly recommend grading vertically—grading all of essay #1 before reading anyone's essay #2—instead of horizontally—finishing each student before starting the next.
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The only hard and fast advice I have been given in general is to not spend more time grading than the person did writing the essay. Note in most instances you shouldn't spend anywhere near that amount of time, but in general you should be cognisant that grading essays is an arduous task, and for a size like 60 it certainly shouldn't be done in one day (I don't know anyone who grades that many by themselves to be frank, all classes of that size I am familiar with have TA(s)).
Other elements will impact how long the grading takes. Such as are you grading all of the exams by yourself or are there other professors/teaching assistants grading exams. If there are multiple people sometimes it is necessary to have a collaborative meeting, and even co-grade several essays to make sure you are being consistent.
For essays people typically make rubrics with which to grade, and this focuses the content for your review (as well as makes expectations explicit to students). The more focused the rubric the easier your task of grading becomes. The only other advice I would give is I typically read all of the essays once, making small comments, marks and notes for myself, and then go back through a second time and grade the papers. This obviously adds more time to grading though.
Not being able to give students feedback is awful for learning, so I would suggest (if possible) you at least keep notes for yourself and/or keep copies of the essays for a short period. Thus if a student requests feedback it will be possible to give them some.