How am I going to grade?
I am going to jump to a 2,000 point scale for calculating course grades, partly because of a new rubric for reading responses. I will also need to build rubrics for the activities related to game design. I will let students evaluate each other’s collaborative skills through the usual teammate evaluations.
By looking back at the primary components that I identified in Part 1, I can see that I forgot about the need to assess the civic engagement project. In the USA, most students won’t care about or complete tasks that are not graded.Maybe I should add a reflective writing assignment as a hook for the civic engagement.
What could go wrong?
I have taught the first-year seminar twice before, and I have a lot of experience with the techniques I plan on using for this course. I should be able to handle problems related to situational factors and instructional strategies. The civic engagement project is the big gray area; that is where my plans could really get derailed.
How will students learn about my plan for the course?
I have a lot of experience writing very detailed syllabi, and the new version of my syllabus quiz should force students to learn what to expect in the course. My rubrics make my grading criteria very transparent, at least in my mind.
How will I know if the course is going and went well?
Instead of relying upon my university’s student evaluation instrument, which lacks both reliability and validity, I use my own end-of-semester survey. I will need to rewrite the survey’s questions to reflect the specific learning goals I have established for this course. It would probably be wise to also collect feedback at mid-semester using the same questions.
Another indicator of students’ experiences of the course is their performance on assignments. Motivated students perform better than those who never engage, and this is reflected in the grades students earn.
The design of the course is now complete. Additional information on the process can be found in Fink’s book, the review of which is at the link above.