Grading Differently


I wanted to draw attention to some of the comments in Jason’s post on incorporating learning goals into one’s syllabus. Bill Wolff writes briefly about his experience using the Learning Record, a system for evaluating students’ development over a long period of time (i.e., a semester).

John Jones then provided a link to video of a UT Austin workshop–where the Learning Record was developed–explaining the Learning Record’s methodology. John humbly neglected to mention his own recent, smart post at the HASTAC blog on using the Learning Record.

I have looked into the Learning Record approach a few times over the last year, but have ultimately decided against grading differently (pace Derrida) because, as Bill put it in his comment, “my time is too limited.” The Learning Record seems like it would be a very effective way to measure actual student outcomes, but given my schedule (4-4) I don’t have the time to implement a new approach to grading let alone actually carry it out. What are others’ experiences adopting this tool?

Moreover, what kind of other approaches to grading differently are out there? As Jason (and many others) reported elsewhere, Cathy Davidson is trying a crowdsourced approach this semester. But there have to be other possibilities.

How then can we become more efficient while remaining effective in our approaches to evaluating students?

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