2022-10-03 Dr Kate Ozment - favorite part about ungrading

Dr. Kate Ozment (@GrubStreetWomen): My favorite part about ungrading is how the tone of the classroom shifts. Friday, my seniors have their first writing assignments due, and the way we talk is completely different than it used to be. Quick 🧵

With each assignment, students tell me what, outside of the prompt, they were focusing on improving. That sets how I comment. In class, they’ll ask “what do you want” and because ungrading I get to say “what are you trying to accomplish, and let’s see if you get there”

“What if I rely too much on class discussion?” I’ll ask you to develop ideas more next time. “What if I scope the topic wrong for the length?” I’ll give advice on how to return to this for your final and what to do on the next short paper. “What if I cite wrong?” We fix it

When you take the bite out of our comments by detaching them from grades, all of a sudden failure becomes a mechanism for learning again. Perfection isn’t required. Try something. See if it works. If it does not, okay! You learned something.

I’m letting them shape how they receive feedback. Course evals indicate students do not value my feedback as much as I’d like. Ungrading suggests I need to bring them into the process. This year, they’re telling me how they want to get comments. https://twitter.com/GrubStreetWomen/status/1576232538275647490/photo/1

I’m hoping this creates a buy-in because feedback is going to isolate 1-2 areas to focus on for the next essay, and students will be asked what they did to try to improve in those areas.

(Btw the quiz function in canvas lets you set up questions before a file submission.)

Our conversation Friday was mutual: how can they set goals and improve, and how can I be better at providing feedback and support? When you’ve ceded your hierarchy of grader it’s much easier to let them into assessment and show you’re a work in progress, too.

Pages that link to this page