As Brian mentioned earlier this week, grading is not always our favorite part of the job, but there are some things we can do to make our lives a little easier.
We previously discussed some grading tips and tricks in previous posts (find them here and here and in this guest post here) that could apply to writing assignments. Some of those include setting a time limit per assignment, grading by section (if you are grading a paper with multiple sections), and grading a small amount of papers at a time to break down the big task into smaller ones. Another strategy discussed in those earlier posts is creating and using quality rubrics.
This week at TNP we are discussing writing in the classroom. To kick off our series, I am sharing how I use peer review activities to improve my students' writing.
No matter how many times we tell our students to review their writing assignments before turning them in, procrastination always seems to win out. At best, they may do a quick glance through the document to make sure there aren’t any glaring errors. At worst, they don’t even use Word or Google Doc’s basic editing software to catch spelling or grammar errors. To combat this, I use structured, in-class peer review activities to improve writing. Peer review activities improve students’ writing in a couple different ways.
When teaching Statistical Methods, I use a skill-based approach. Many of my students don’t have plans to go to graduate school. Rather than emphasizing formulas, I teach my students the concepts behind the formulas. This teaches the key concepts from class, without overburdening them with complex formulas and symbols that often intimidate students.
This week The Novice Professor is covering advice for people who are preparing to teach for the first time. In a two-part post, the contributors of The Novice Professor will be giving our takes on five questions submitted by Rachel Williams, a first-year PhD student at The University of Texas at El Paso.
Read on for Part 2 where we discuss how we keep students engaged in our classes and deal with disruptions in the classroom.
Next week, Jen and I will be posting about all the things we learned at the Annual Conference on the Teaching of Psychology this year in Phoenix. Here is a quick recap of the highlights from the session’s today (stay tuned next week for more details!)
When I first started teaching as a graduate student, I was assigned courses that students notoriously dreaded. First, I taught a writing lab for our research methods course, where students learned about APA formatting and wrote a research paper. After that, I taught Statistical Methods. In both courses, students routinely complained that the skills taught in these courses didn’t apply to them. They didn’t want to be researchers that conducted experiments, ran data analyses, and then wrote up findings in a manuscript. So why should they take these classes seriously?
Here at The Novice Professor (and everywhere else) academics are heading into a new school year. As "this" year comes to a close we are reflecting on the past year and setting goals for the upcoming year. To inspire you, and help hold ourselves accountable, we are sharing our goals with you in this week's posts, spanning several topics of academic life.
We at The Novice Professor are still working on developing habits that will increase our Productivity and tweaking our work-life balance. Three of us share our goals in this area.