CTL instructional Awards: Innovative or Out of Class Teaching: Libby Meyer and Leo Ureel
Innovative or Out of Class Teaching: Libby Meyer, Lecturer in Visual and Performing Arts and Leo Ureel, Assistant Professor in Computer Science
Beyond Carrots and Sticks: Mastery Based Grading and Narrative Assessment by Libby Meyer
While academic performance grades do have their place and are important on transcripts, what do they actually tell us about a student’s comprehension of the subject matter? Traditional grading methods basically create a reward and punishment framework. The “one and done” method of testing does not foster deep learning of the material’s content and connections. Worse yet, the standard approach can lead to unintended negative consequences, namely cheating, stress, and bad habits all to the detriment of students and their future employers. I will present two alternative models of assessment: Mastery Based Grading and Narrative Assessment. These forms of assessment provide students with task-involving feedback, opportunities to resubmit assignments multiple times, retake exams until mastery is achieved, and intentionally encourage curiosity and objectives beyond the grade.
Three course innovations to support communication by Leo Ureel
Introductory courses present many communication challenges between faculty and first year students. In this context, we discuss three innovations used in our introductory computer science courses. The first is the use of Snap, a high-level, visual programming language, as a form of pseudocode during the first five weeks of the course to build student vocabulary and problem solving skills before tackling programming in Java. The second is a Code Critiquer developed as a Canvas plugin to provide immediate guidance and feedback to students when they submit their programming assignments. The third is a grade visualization tool that helps students understand their current performance in the course and project a range that will contain their final grade. While not everyone teaches introductory computer science, we discuss how these or similar innovations and tools might apply to your course.
Zoom link provided after registration