Week 6 – Grading

  1. Give three purposes for grading in an online class. Explain each one and then provide an example or guideline for accomplishing each purpose.
  • Checks on activity-this could mean instructors checking on how many times the students are accessing the class. This helps a teacher determine whether or not the students is staying engaged in the class
  • Shape performance-grading, if done weel, can be used to encourage students to internalize the information and apply it, rather than regurgitate it and forget it. For example, our discussion board. We are required to research information and then make it applicable to different stuations we are presented with.
  • Motivation-this is a big one. We all need motivation, even in f2f classes. As semeseters/quarters near the end students tend to loose motivation. We all know that the end result is a grade and in order to obtain the grade we desire we must stay engaged.
  1. You have been called to consult with a university which is about to create a brand new totally online graduate program in leadership education. As part of your consultation you have been asked to provide a short written policy (for the student and instructor handbooks) related to grading policy. List (bullet list) the top five issues your policy will address.
  • Alphanumeric system vs pass/fail
  • Engagement requirements
  • What to expect from instructor – teaching presence, best practices
  • Feedback techniques
  • Ability to apply, nalayze, synthesize, and evaluate
  1. As part of the consultation with the university on creating an online program you have been asked to create a rubric that can be used across all program classes to grade the online discussions. The idea is to provide a single rubric that is generalized enough to provide a guide for student engagement in the discussion, and for instructors to be able to grade the discussions with a minimum of effort. Students in these classes are all professional educators with a college education. Each class is required to have one discussion each week and the discussion is the only planned method for student-student interaction in the class. It has been decided that discussions will be worth 30 points and this represents 30% of the total points available in the session. The rubric you create must be simple for the instructor to use but specific enough so that students clearly understand what they are to do and why they get the grade they receive.
Possible points Points received
Was the post made within the allotted time 5
Were all the questions answered appropriately 7
Did the student include outside research 7
Did the student respond and engage in other students posts 6
Did the student moderate his post in a timely manner 5
  1. Choose a topic that is familiar to you and create three excellent learning objectives. Explain why the objectives you create are excellent.

Student will be able to:

  • Define: setting, characters, plot
  • Identify setting, characters, and plot of a book from a given list
  • Write a one page book report using these three points.
  1. Describe an eLearning activity that will have students meet one or more of the objectives you just created.

A discussion board will be provided for the students to communicate with others who read the same book. They will be required to discuss the book and the characteristics of the book report.

  1. Explain how you will grade the student work in the above activity. For example you may want to provide a rubric or describe other methods used.
Discussion:20 pts Possible points Awarded points
Did the students define setting, Character, plot 5
Did the student identify the 3 characteristics of the book 5
Did the students engage/participate in the discussions 5
Did the student respond to at least 3 others with useful critiques 5
Book Report: 40 pts
Did srudent include setting, characters, and plot 10
Did student identify setting, characters, and plot 10
Did student elaborate and give detail 10
Grammar 10
  1. Explain how you will provide feedback to the student in the above activity. Include an example of your feedback if possible.

First, I will do my best to be present on the discussion board in order to guide the students. Second, I will return the rubric with the scores, as well as a comment section with positive feedback.

  1. Quote your best entry from this week’s Blackboard discussion. Explain why you chose it and what it demonstrates about your understanding, learning process etc.

I found the discussion board a little overwhelming this week. I try to get on it and respond earlier in the week because once there are tons of comments I feel like my heads going to explode. This was a response to one of Victor’s replies. Hopefully it will spark some conversation but seeing that it’s the end of the week, it probably won’t.

I completely agree with you Victor.  Portfolios are definitely sufficient for certain areas, even necessary.  I guess it would be kind of tricky to asses a med student specializing in plastic surgery by giving him a human subject and letting him perform surgery and decide whether or not he passed?!  Okay, that was kind of joke.  But in all honesty, I feel like it is almost impossible to not use a numerical grading system for certain aspects of a class.  For example, anatomy, is it really necessary to have some drawn out discussion about the location of organs in the human body when you can simply hand out a piece of paper and have the students identify parts? Could there possibly be a better way of eliminating numerical grades from final grades, yet have numerical grades still have its place along the course of the class?

  1. Identify the student you think was the most important participant in the Blackboard discussion. Explain why and provide at least one quote from that student’s contributions to the Blackboard discussion.

I thought both Christen and Laura were both crucial to this weeks discussion as they were the ones to get it going. I particularly like this post by Laura:

“Here is a website that gives 12 alternatives to grading:

http://www.teachthought.com/teaching/12-alternatives-to-letter-grades-in-education/ “

Although just a shared link, it sparked tons of conversation and lots of people went through the list and picked out aspects of it they liked and shared with the rest of the class.

  1. Reflect on what you have learned this week. What have you learned that has the potential to inform or influence you or your practice of online learning going forward? Explain why.

This week I found out that I have a lot to learn about grading. As a teacher I will have a lot of decisions to make and I am sure that it will all be a matter of trial and error in the beginning. I want to put into play a system that is best for my students, one that will only help them succeed, motivate them, and impart a positive attitude. As I say that and think back about the negative connotations a grade can have, I think that I will probably focus less on a grade a more on the student work. With that said, I am sure grades will still be party of the public school system, but I think I can implement some tools to make it a less painful process, for the students at least.


4 thoughts on “Week 6 – Grading

  1. Margarita

    I enjoyed reading your final reflection. I also feel that I have so much to do to move forward as a teacher and integrate technology to its fullest capacity while still holding my f2f class. I think a big lesson I gained this week is to think outside of the box when designing assessments. When you work for a district, grade scales and systems are set up for us and there’s no working around them or tossing them out. But as educators, we have the power to decide how those assessments will be made, what they will look like, and what we will expect our students to do. There’s a wonderful freedom in that!


  2. hyesu19888

    Hi Rachel, I learned how grading and policy are important in the education. And I also chose Laura’s post for 9#. The information she offered was really interesting to me because I did not think much about other methods of grading. Do you think that a letter grading is good tool for evaluate students’ performance objectively?



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