Sunday, July 03, 2011

Grading Policies Revision

On my #summerlist, one of the things I want to do is revise SBG in my classroom. (see this post and this post for past discussions). Here is my revised Grading Policies page for the upcoming school year:

Changes I made:
  • I am going to quiz students twice. First time I am going to give feedback only, as I had intended to do but didn't stick with. Second time will have the feedback-only concepts tested and (up to) three new concepts for feedback only. From what I read from others during the SBG Gala, it seemed that more people felt that a feedback only option made sense for the first time students saw a concept on a test, and then grade the second one.
  • The one I am having the debate on at the moment is whether or not to require students to show me their original practice problems before allowing a reassessment. At the moment, I have it in there but there is a part of me that doesn't want to deal with the hassle of it. I am a little afraid that it will discourage students from reassessing because they have to do the problems and if they didn't do them originally, that will be more work for them to do before reassessing. However, I think it is also a good idea because it will force students to have done the original assignment (at some point) if they want to reassess and maybe it will instill in them that they should be doing the problems in the first place. **I revised this to give students an option of what work to submit with the reassessment request. 
  • I am limiting students to three concepts a reassessment.
  • Students will have to apply for reassessment (a la Sam Shah). Since not all my students have easy access to email (or so I think), they can either email me or hand me the written information. Last year I had a tutor form they could get and fill in. I think by having written out at the beginning of the year what needs to be done to reassess, it will encourage students to refer back to this sheet throughout the year.
  • When applying for reassessment, students will have to explain what they have done to prepare for the reassessment. They will also have to correct the problem(s) they were not successful on earlier and explain what they did wrong. I really think this will be the key for students to be more successful in reassessment.
Please, please, please, take a few minutes and look at what I have put together for the next school year and offer your feedback in the comments. This is not necessarily final, but it is as close as I am going to get it at the moment. Thanks so much!


druin said...

Take these comments with a grain of salt, as I'm just kind of processing what you posted...

I like the idea of the feedback only the first time. That's somewhat similar to what I do w/ my Quick Checks. I'm curious if (or by how much) the overall grading time increases with seeing each concept twice. My other question would be how to differentiate the two assessments enough to know that they really know the concept rather than being able to repeat a process (if that makes sense). These are two issues that plagued me this year - both the additional feedback time on QCs and that the reassessments often didn't differ enough from the first quiz. :(

I require students to show proof of remediation prior to reassessment. That could be the original practice problems, but it's not limited to that. They could do an error analysis on their original assessment, problems from some other source, etc. I do find it valuable to glance over these and look at their work, but I let the kids mostly have control on their remediation. For me, this stops the "what do I have to lose, blindly throw a dart and hope for the best" requiz attempts :)

The only other comment I have is about the frequency. Every 3 concepts in Alg2 could be every 2-3 days, which seems like it could get overwhelming to both you and the kids. Especially since you want the turn around time in grading to be pretty fast. I know I ended up quizzing once every 5-7 school days and some of my kids felt pretty overwhelmed with that number of assessments.

Anyway, as I said, these are just random thoughts that I couldn't fit into 140 characters :) Feel free to ignore.

iTeach said...

Hi Lisa,
First of all, kudos to you for working with SBG. I think everyone benefits from it enormously.
Second, the more I read, the more I realize that we all set up our grading systems very differently, and there's not one RIGHT way to do it. It requires a lot of refining and re-working.
I just have a couple of comments:
- I really like that you are laying this all out for your kids from the get-go. It makes it clear and easy to refer to. Last year, I made a giant poster that said something like "HEY YOU, NEED TO REASSESS?" and put some basic info on it to remind them of what they needed to do (and where to find me). Just a suggestion :)
- I have no idea how you teach and how your class works, but do you really teach one concept every day? How different are they from day to day, and could you possibly lump some of them together to cut down on the number/amount/time for assessment? Last yr in hnrs geo I had 34 objectives for the year at 3 levels each and my assessments were on individual objectives. It made it a bit easier to manage all the reassessments.
- When kids reassess, if they missed 1 concept on a quiz that had 6 of them, do they ned to reassess the whole quiz? If not... why not break it up from the beginning?
- I think you may get overwhelmed "checking" all the assigned problems before each reassessment for each kid. I like druin's idea of just showing "some kind of proof that you prepped for this reassessment instead of taking a shot in the dark". Less stress for the kid and a bit less work for you (plus no nagging required)

I'm re-working through some of my grading this summer as well. I'm hoping at some point to be able to sit down and articulate it all.
Is the rest of your dept doing anything like this? (Sorry, I didn't keep up with twitter much during the school year).
Good luck!

Lisa said...

I don't necessarily cover a concept a day. Last year in most of my classes I covered 60-70 concepts over the course of the year.

@druin - I may revise it to just be proof of practice somehow. As I was typing it, I was thinking that proof of the original problems could be a pain. There is a part of me that really wants them to do an error analysis of their quiz questions, so I may still make that manditory.

@iTeach - I like the idea of the poster - will have to think on how I'd execute that. Students do not have to reassess a whole quiz - they can reassess whatever concept(s) they wish to. I am the only one in my department doing SBG and there is only one other teacher in our school dabbling in SBG.

Samuel Rushmore said...

One possible way to provide feedback on your first assessment--Frappys--borrowed from AP Statistics:

Anonymous said...

I'm curious about why you put a limit of 3 times for additional assessments. Do a lot of students hit that limit?

It sounds like I have a lot fewer objectives in my physics class, so maybe with a larger number of standards it would be more of a problem. But I definitely had kids last year who needed many more than three chances (some getting closer and closer each time).

Lisa said...

@kellyoshea - I only had 2 students hit the 3 time limit. The reason I had put it in was to keep students from chasing points. The more I am thinking about it, I may take it out, especially since they have to show me proof of what they have done to learn the information. Thanks for getting me to think about that.

@Samuel - I'll have to look at that. Thanks!