grading and feedback

Teachable Moments: The Grading Conference

Grading student papers may be the college instructor’s least pleasant duty. Most of us carefully mark each page, noting problems, questioning assumptions, and offering additional information, many times on the final version of the essay when it is too late to make improvements. I have

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Actionable Feedback in the Undergraduate Curriculum

When we return work to our students, we hope that they will study our feedback carefully and strive to improve their writing on the next assignment. Indeed, there are times when faculty may observe a student receiving a paper, looking for the grade, and then

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An Empathetic Approach to Writing Rubrics

“Response shows a complete lack of understanding.”
“Piece had no style or voice.”
“Position is incoherent.”
“Thesis is utterly incompetent.”
“Weak.”
“Ineffective.”
“Unsatisfactory.”

This is some of the discouraging feedback that we found in an interdisciplinary, cross-institutional survey of

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What Student Feedback Literacy Entails

Student feedback literacy—Is it meaningless academic jargon or destined to become a trendy handle? Neither is my hope for this moniker. While the term was originally defined as a student’s ability to read, interpret, and use written feedback, Carless and Boud (2018) enhance its definition

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A Memo to Students about Unexpected Grades

It doesn’t make any sense. You worked hard on that assignment, studied long hours for the test. You’re upset—texting complaints and spouting off to friends. Why not talk to me? Let me start with some reasons why you should.

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Don’t Water Down Feedback to Your Students

I recently had an instructor ask whether the feedback he was about to provide to a student was too harsh. He said the student’s writing was a mess and that there was no way that the student would make it through their program without writing

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