teaching toolbox https://scienceblogs.com/ en GSA update: spatial thinking about hot springs near normal faults https://scienceblogs.com/stressrelated/2009/10/20/gsa-update-spatial-thinking-ab <span>GSA update: spatial thinking about hot springs near normal faults</span> <div class="field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field--item"><p>I'm heading home tomorrow, and I've finally got a little time to blog. Here's quick summary of the sessions I went to on Sunday (the first day of the meeting).<br /><br /><br /><br /><u><a href="http://gsa.confex.com/gsa/2009AM/finalprogram/session_23947.htm">Detachment Dynamics</a>: heat, deformation, and fluids in extensional systems</u>: Where continental crust stretches apart, <a href="http://www.uwsp.edu/geo/faculty/ritter/images/lithosphere/tectonics/normal_fault_labelled_diagram.jpg">steep normal faults</a> join at depth into detachment systems: shear zones that separate hot, ductilely deforming rocks from shallower, brittly deforming rocks. These systems have been discussed since the 1980s, but the focus in this session was a little different than in past discussions I've witnessed. Detachments bring hot rocks closer to the surface, and put them adjacent to systems of fractures. If you've got hot rock and fractures close to one another, that <a href="http://gsa.confex.com/gsa/2009AM/finalprogram/abstract_166627.htm">should drive the movement of hot water</a>, creating hydrothermal circulation. Above old detachment faults, those remnant hydrothermal systems could have deposited ores. (In fact, given the geology of Nevada and <a href="http://pubs.usgs.gov/bul/b2004/html/bull2004detachmentfaultrelated_mineraliz.htm">Arizona</a>, I suspect that "could have" is too cautious of a statement.) In modern extensional systems, that means hot springs. (Also not particularly suprising, if you think about your favorite hot spring.) There are several groups looking at old metamorphic core complexes (such as the Snake Range, Nevada), using deuterium and oxygen isotopes to look at the sources of water (from below or above) that interacted with the deforming rocks, and the <a href="http://gsa.confex.com/gsa/2009AM/finalprogram/abstract_167074.htm">Colorado Geological Survey</a> is thinking about geothermal systems active todayin the Arkansas River valley (Buena Vista area). (If Durango people want to know more about geothermal energy in Colorado, one of the co-authors of this talk will be speaking at the Four Corners Geological Society on this Friday, Oct. 23. Drop me a note if you're interested, and I will tell you the details.)<br /><br /><br /><br /><u>Spatial Skills in the Geosciences</u>: Geologists are good at thinking spatially. At least, that's what we structural geologists tell anyone who will listen. (Just ask us to point to the nearest beer.) But rather that just brag about it, a group of geoscientists has started collaborating with cognitive scientists to try to understand exactly what's going on.<br /><br /><br /><br /> - Experience as a geologist actually <a href="http://serc.carleton.edu/NAGTWorkshops/mineralogy/xtlsymmetry/index.html">doesn't correlate very well</a> with performance on spatial visualization tests. (However, in a talk on Monday, I heard that geologists tended to perform a <a href="http://create.alt.ed.nyu.edu/assessment/vz2/start.html">paper folding test very quickly</a>, though I don't think they separated novice from expert geologists in that study.)<br /><br /><br /><br /> - One of the <a href="http://gsa.confex.com/gsa/2009AM/finalprogram/abstract_163683.htm">most intriguing ideas</a> is software called <a href="http://spatiallearning.org/">CogSketch</a>, which is designed to "see" student sketches in the way an instructor would. (Want to give students a quiz to see if they can recognize a fault, and have a computer give the students feedback and then grade the work?) The group that has designed the software is looking for people to help test it, so check their website and contact the authors.<br /><br /><br /><br /> - One of the most worrisome ideas came from studies of eye tracking (seeing where students looked when they read geology textbooks or looked at slides). Carefully examining pictures correlated with understanding the material, but <a href="http://gsa.confex.com/gsa/2009AM/finalprogram/abstract_164556.htm">many students</a> only spent a few percent of their time looking at pictures. Didn't matter how the pictures were integrated with the test - some students only looked at the pictures when they got in the way of reading the words. (And other students, the ones who did the best on post-tests, glanced frequently at the pictures, regardless of how the pictures versus words were arranged.) So much for creative textbook design.<br /><br /><br /><br /> And on top of that, geologists are good at putting distracting things in their photos. <a href="http://gsa.confex.com/gsa/2009AM/finalprogram/abstract_164878.htm">Like people, for scale</a>. When students look at a field photo, they look at the person. Or the dog. Or the graffiti on the rock. Forget the GIANT FAULT behind them... the people are more interesting. The authors suggested using a subtle scale instead of people. (But then will students wonder why we keep showing pictures of the change in our wallets, or our rock hammers' summer vacation?)<br /><br /><br /><br /> - On the other hand, <a href="http://gsa.confex.com/gsa/2009AM/finalprogram/abstract_163971.htm">mineralogy classes</a> can dance to learn symmetry. (Simple exercises with hands can also be useful, in my experience, for those who find contra dancing to be an uncomfortably novel experience.) There are <a href="http://serc.carleton.edu/NAGTWorkshops/mineralogy/xtlsymmetry/index.html">videos</a>, with music.<br /><br /><br /><br /> (Warning: I didn't go to an entire session either in the morning or in the afternoon. I have a bad habit of leaving a room at the mid-session break, getting into a conversation in the hall, and not going back in. This was a typical pattern for the meeting.)<br /><br /><br /></p> </div> <span><a title="View user profile." href="/author/khannula" lang="" about="/author/khannula" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">khannula</a></span> <span>Tue, 10/20/2009 - 16:28</span> <div class="field field--name-field-blog-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-inline"> <div class="field--label">Tags</div> <div class="field--items"> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/conferences" hreflang="en">conferences</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/structural-geology" hreflang="en">structural geology</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/teaching" hreflang="en">teaching</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/teaching-toolbox" hreflang="en">teaching toolbox</a></div> </div> </div> <section> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-2499221" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1256848679"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>That sounds fascinating. I only took one semester of geology in college but I was fascinated by the wooden models that had been laboriously made with different colors of wood glued together, cut, and glued together again to show different kinds of faults. I think if I'd taken geology sooner in college I could've been a geologist.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=2499221&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="wO5lPR2VgSoo72QMqrJTzgHm8FtHlQK7sv35aDvaSBg"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://aspiring.ecologist.blogspot.com" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Karina (not verified)</a> on 29 Oct 2009 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/36190/feed#comment-2499221">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> </section> <ul class="links inline list-inline"><li class="comment-forbidden"><a href="/user/login?destination=/stressrelated/2009/10/20/gsa-update-spatial-thinking-ab%23comment-form">Log in</a> to post comments</li></ul> Tue, 20 Oct 2009 20:28:58 +0000 khannula 147861 at https://scienceblogs.com Linkfest: structural geology https://scienceblogs.com/stressrelated/2009/09/02/linkfest-structural-geology <span>Linkfest: structural geology</span> <div class="field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field--item"><p>I've spent 15 hours in the classroom teaching in the past three days, and several more meeting with students to sort out schedules and brainstorm ideas for senior thesis projects. My brain is fried, but I'm going to try to share some interesting stuff I've run into:<br /><br /><br /><br /> - Early this afternoon, I posted a frantic plea for good Google Earth locations to use to demonstrate tilted rock layers in my first Structural Geology lab. I should have just checked SERC first. They now have a <a href="http://serc.carleton.edu/NAGTWorkshops/structure/google_earth_mapping_locations.html">collection</a> of images and latitude/longitude coordinates that are both beautiful and beautifully deformed. I started my lab by showing the class the Raplee Anticline. Google Earth is amazing for learning to visualize features on geologic maps. (I'm going to have to go into this more deeply in the future - I went from way cool visualization directly into solving spatial problems with trig, and it was rough.)<br /><br /><br /><br /> - Callan Bentley at NOVA Geoblog has been discussing the differences between structural and sedimentary basins (<a href="http://nvcc.edu/home/cbentley/geoblog/2009/09/basins-discussed.html">here</a> and <a href="http://www.nvcc.edu/home/cbentley/geoblog/2009/09/basins-depositional-vs-structural.html">here</a>). (Callan's field photos are often good for a dose of structural geology, too. His blog makes me wish I'd spent the summer in the field.)<br /><br /><br /><br /> - The <a href="http://earthquake.usgs.gov/eqcenter/recenteqsww/Quakes/us2009lbat.php#summary">M 7.0 earthquake</a> that caused injuries and deaths in Jakarta, Indonesia today looks pretty weird, tectonically. It occurred at 50 km depth in a subduction zone, but the <a href="http://quake.wr.usgs.gov/recenteqs/beachball.html">focal mechanism</a> implies that it occurred during northwest-southeast shortening. The plate movement is about perpendicular to the slip direction - the Australian plate slips to the northeast under Java there. I don't think the plate convergence is as oblique under Java as it is beneath Sumatra (where there are some interesting structures that result from plates that collide at an angle to the plate boundary). Anyway, I have no idea what happened.<br /><br /><br /><br /> - And I need to read a paper from the August issue of Geology about <a href="http://geology.gsapubs.org/content/37/8/683.abstract">an active low-angle normal fault in Italy</a>. I saw a press release about this paper tweeted today, and the abstract is interesting enough that it deserves a full blog post.<br /><br /><br /><br /> But I've promised a student that I'll read articles about the Navajo Mountain laccolith and talk to her about them on Friday, and I've got 31 labs from my sophomores to grade already.<br /><br /><br /></p> </div> <span><a title="View user profile." href="/author/khannula" lang="" about="/author/khannula" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">khannula</a></span> <span>Wed, 09/02/2009 - 14:29</span> <div class="field field--name-field-blog-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-inline"> <div class="field--label">Tags</div> <div class="field--items"> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/links" hreflang="en">Links</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/structural-geology" hreflang="en">structural geology</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/teaching-toolbox" hreflang="en">teaching toolbox</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/tectonics" hreflang="en">tectonics</a></div> </div> </div> <section> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-2499178" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1255058088"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>I saw a press release about this paper tweeted today, and the abstract is interesting enough that it deserves a full blog post.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=2499178&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="fmnXnZqjJvVTRbLCoaN1M6F0ubqbDk9vE2w9C9rEnVo"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://www.kekikliacicehrezayiflama.net" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">acı çehre (not verified)</a> on 08 Oct 2009 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/36190/feed#comment-2499178">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-2499179" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1255058352"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>I saw a press release about this paper tweeted today, and the abstract is interesting enough that it deserves a full blog post.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=2499179&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="P5--8OoTh8_GWM7ttzdZl8-dCNwXhSw-HkRrofiV1aI"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://www.kekikliacicehrezayiflama.net" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">acı çehre (not verified)</a> on 08 Oct 2009 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/36190/feed#comment-2499179">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-2499180" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1254020197"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Dear Kim nice blog. Structural geology always confused me when I was student.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=2499180&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="W5riz2GFSDI-IefqCguGnbAx47i_HOpOsG26DvVdmyA"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://nitishpriyadarshi.blogspot.com" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="" content="Dr. Nitish Priyadarshi">Dr. Nitish Pri… (not verified)</a> on 26 Sep 2009 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/36190/feed#comment-2499180">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-2499181" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1255177216"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>I posted a frantic plea for good Google Earth locations to use to demonstrate tilted rock layers in my first Structural Geology lab</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=2499181&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="QLNifkxe4hK3YyHNPsZgQhAOltvPpoIQGd8etxIYniI"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://www.kiloaldiriciwmax.net" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">w-max (not verified)</a> on 10 Oct 2009 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/36190/feed#comment-2499181">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> </section> <ul class="links inline list-inline"><li class="comment-forbidden"><a href="/user/login?destination=/stressrelated/2009/09/02/linkfest-structural-geology%23comment-form">Log in</a> to post comments</li></ul> Wed, 02 Sep 2009 18:29:54 +0000 khannula 147851 at https://scienceblogs.com Adding to my teaching toolbox: the gallery walk https://scienceblogs.com/stressrelated/2009/07/15/adding-to-my-teaching-toolbox <span>Adding to my teaching toolbox: the gallery walk</span> <div class="field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field--item"><p>While I was teaching my <a href=" http://scienceblogs.com/stressrelated/2009/03/redesigning_a_broken_course.php ">reworked</a> upper division <a href=" http://scienceblogs.com/stressrelated/2009/03/course_redesign_cont_thinking.php ">gen ed class</a> earlier this summer, I decided to use a discussion technique that I hadn't used before: the <a href="&lt;br"></a> "http://serc.carleton.edu/introgeo/gallerywalk/index.html"&gt;gallery walk. It worked so well that I'm trying to figure out where else it might be useful.<br /><br /><br /><br /> The idea behind the gallery walk is pretty simple: students are divided into several groups, and work their way around a series of stations at which they add to a list of answers to a question (or whatever the task at each station involves). I had used the technique as a participant in a session at last summer's <a href=" http://serc.carleton.edu/NAGTWorkshops/intro08/index.html ">Teaching Intro Geoscience workshop</a>, and the way I implemented it was mostly inspired by the way it was used there.<br /><br /><br /></p> <!--more--><p>My <a href="http://scienceblogs.com/stressrelated/2009/03/course_redesign_part_3_goal_i.php">goals for the class</a> had less to do with learning particular content, and more with pushing the students to think more deeply about how humans respond to natural hazards:<br /><br /><br /></p> <ul><li><b>Students will be able to analyze responses to historical, recent, and future disasters in many parts of the world.</b></li> <li>Students will be able to evaluate possible strategies for preventing or responding to natural disasters.</li> <li>Students will be able to evaluate and critique the response to a potential or recent natural hazard (beyond the examples discussed in class).</li> </ul><p>I especially wanted the students to think about the issues from different perspectives, and to think about who pays the costs and who receives the benefits of various ways to deal with the hazards. In the past, I've led discussions of groups of ~30 students, trying to brainstorm lists of costs or lists of benefits, and I've had trouble getting more than a handful of students to participate. So I decided to try using a gallery walk in place of some of the discussions, and it worked well enough that I used it nearly every time.<br /><br /><br /><br /> For example, here's my (after-the-fact) class plan* for discussion of the ways people deal with floods:<br /><br /><br /></p> <blockquote><p><b>Thursday</b>: Discussion of other ways of dealing with flood hazards and of internet sources.<br /><br /><br /><br /><i>Discussion prep</i>: reading in textbooks, assignment to find five ways that humans affect rivers and five things humans do to deal with flooding. [Students answered the questions on Moodle, our online course management thingy. This made it easier for me to keep track of who had done the pre-class exercise, without needing to deal with lots of scraps of paper.]<br /><br /><br /><br /><i>Discussion</i>: gallery walk focusing on five of the ways people deal with flooding (flood-control dams, emergency management, flood insurance, and land-use planning). For each topic, students had to write down the benefits, the costs, and the people (or others) who received the benefits or who paid the costs. [Each topic was on a separate pad of newsprint, and each group had about five minutes at each pad to brainstorm and add their ideas to the list.]<br /><br /><br /><br /> At end, each group read their paper, and I added comments or asked students to think about another aspect. (For instance, the benefits of dams included flood control, electricity generation, and irrigation, but the people who benefited wanted different water levels in the reservoirs.)</p></blockquote> <p>I didn't try to grade the work - I graded based on "participation," and I simply had students write their names on the last pad of paper and gave credit to everyone who was in class. Actual participation was still somewhat uneven, but the smaller groups (five or six students in each) meant that slacking off was more difficult. I also chose the topics from the responses I had received from the discussion prep assignment, so I knew that some of the students had noticed each of the approaches in their book, and there weren't many students who had absolutely no clue what was going on.<br /><br /><br /><br /> The discussion continued after the exercise - the students didn't immediately recognize the conflicts between the different stakeholders, so I asked other questions about the responses on the pads. Participation was better than in previous classes, where there wasn't a gallery walk or other exercise before the discussion - the students defended comments they had made on the sheets, or elaborated on their thinking, or even (occasionally) argued with me when I played devil's advocate.<br /><br /><br /><br /> I haven't used the gallery walk in other classes, so I don't have a good sense of when it works and when it doesn't. I think that the discussions in The Control of Nature were suited to the technique for several reasons:<br /><br /><br /></p> <ul><li>there were several similar questions to ask in each discussion - what various stakeholders wanted from a mitigation technique, or strengths and weaknesses of a number of approaches to solving a problem.</li> <li>individual students were unlikely to come up with every single possible response to a question - a variety of backgrounds and experiences and values meant a variety of different responses.</li> <li>I wanted each student to have thought about each question.</li> </ul><p>Would I use this in a science-majors class? I don't know. It would need to be in a situation in which each group of students could add something to each little discussion - each discussion would need to be complicated enough that the second, third, or fourth groups would have something left to add. It might work well for brainstorming explanations for data collected as part of a class project (especially if the data could be divided into four or five different sets). I wonder if it could be used to cycle students through several related (and nearby) sites on a field trip - to have students each make one observation, and add it to a list of observations for each site? And it might work for an upper-level class if I started discussing a topic with several puzzling observations that needed explanation. (I've never done anything like that, but it might be a good thing to try.)<br /><br /><br /><br /> So, to summarize: interesting technique, good for brainstorming, useful addition to my teaching toolbox. I'm glad I tried it.<br /><br /><br /><br /> * I swore that, just this once, I would make useful notes on what I actually did in class, what worked, and what didn't. I only managed to follow through for one week out of my five-week class - once I started grading, I stopped making time to reflect. And I will probably pay the price next time I teach the class and can't remember what I actually did...<br /><br /><br /><br /><i>Thanks to ScienceWoman for inspiring me to go back to this series of posts I swore I would do. She's currently working through her own <a href="http://scienceblogs.com/sciencewoman/2009/07/setting_goals_for_a_course_on.php">course design process</a>, and she reminded me that I hadn't finished all the posts I meant to make about my own class.</i><br /><br /><br /></p> </div> <span><a title="View user profile." href="/author/khannula" lang="" about="/author/khannula" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">khannula</a></span> <span>Wed, 07/15/2009 - 16:42</span> <div class="field field--name-field-blog-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-inline"> <div class="field--label">Tags</div> <div class="field--items"> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/natural-disasters" hreflang="en">natural disasters</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/teaching" hreflang="en">teaching</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/teaching-toolbox" hreflang="en">teaching toolbox</a></div> </div> </div> <section> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-2499054" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1247721956"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>What a great blog - not what I was expecting when I followed the link here from <a href="http://nolonger25.blogspot.com">http://nolonger25.blogspot.com</a>. </p> <p>I am a lifetime rockhound, so your unique (to people not in this community) blog topics are fabulous to read. I feel smarter just in the 10 mins I've been here ;)</p> <p>Love your style and topics - I'll be following! </p> <p>Have a fabulous day!</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=2499054&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="eXYwcBRFbOwX0-D-tZcxrXB2Fif85oDExGoktpHOop0"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://youknowthatblog.com/" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="" content="Jenn@ You know... that Blog?">Jenn@ You know… (not verified)</a> on 16 Jul 2009 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/36190/feed#comment-2499054">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="217" id="comment-2499055" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1248083586"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>But what was the 5th way people deal with flooding?</p> <p>I used a gallery walk in a small intro class a few years ago and I thought it was fairly successful. My class had ~15 students, and I've never figured out how to scale it up to a larger class.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=2499055&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="cyn3OPf_ikEAwL1_MeRx9NCd37Di92Ctde9f86Hd7Ss"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a title="View user profile." href="/author/sciencewoman" lang="" about="/author/sciencewoman" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">sciencewoman</a> on 20 Jul 2009 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/36190/feed#comment-2499055">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/author/sciencewoman"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/author/sciencewoman" hreflang="en"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="318" id="comment-2499056" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1248086518"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>*counts* Ack, I have no idea what the fifth way was. Might have been levees; might have been "do nothing until disaster strikes." (Told you I wasn't very good about making notes about what actually happened in class.)</p> <p>My class only had 24 students, so I've never scaled it up to a larger class. The suggestion on SERC is to split the class up into sections (so a 100-student class might have four sections of 25 students, each of which did the gallery walk as if it were a smaller class). I don't know how well it would work, though - my experience with classes over 50 students (which thankfully is a decade ago now!) is that every single teaching technique is harder. (Even pure lecture is harder, especially if the room has mediocre acoustics.)</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=2499056&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="52gkHcSAiSKWb1YcMh6EL9LKx9g32SNSXmwo0JiOHUc"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a title="View user profile." href="/author/khannula" lang="" about="/author/khannula" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">khannula</a> on 20 Jul 2009 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/36190/feed#comment-2499056">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/author/khannula"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/author/khannula" hreflang="en"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-2499057" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1248385012"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>I like the idea of having individual students adding to a list of observations at field trip sites. In intro-majors classes, almost anything could be a valid observation, so students could feel encouraged by the exercise. It could also lead to lively discussions and brainstorming, in on-the-outcrop sessions, amongst majors farther along in their studies.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=2499057&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="2JWvbxQirWGL3IQiSs2Ol7tBmKvWudgYSq3YB0oIbHs"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://highway8a.blogspot.com" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Silver Fox (not verified)</a> on 23 Jul 2009 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/36190/feed#comment-2499057">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> </section> <ul class="links inline list-inline"><li class="comment-forbidden"><a href="/user/login?destination=/stressrelated/2009/07/15/adding-to-my-teaching-toolbox%23comment-form">Log in</a> to post comments</li></ul> Wed, 15 Jul 2009 20:42:50 +0000 khannula 147831 at https://scienceblogs.com How I learned to stop worrying and encourage internet surfing in class https://scienceblogs.com/stressrelated/2009/06/16/how-i-learned-to-stop-worrying <span>How I learned to stop worrying and encourage internet surfing in class</span> <div class="field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field--item"><p>When I was <a href="http://scienceblogs.com/stressrelated/2009/03/redesigning_a_broken_course.php">designing</a> my summer session class, I ran into a problem. If I really wanted my students to achieve the <a href="http://scienceblogs.com/stressrelated/2009/03/course_redesign_part_3_goal_i.php">course goals</a>, they would need to spend a lot of time on a computer. In a 3-times-a-week lecture course, I might expect them to do that work outside of class, but we were going to be <a href="http://scienceblogs.com/stressrelated/2009/03/course_redesign_cont_thinking.php">meeting for two hours a day</a>, four days a week - they wouldn't have much time between classes (especially if they were taking other classes and working). And I didn't want to lecture for two hours a day. So, if I wanted them to get in-class practice doing things that related to their goals, I needed to schedule my class for a computer classroom.</p> <p>I was excited about my decision, but when I told colleagues about it, they asked, "aren't you worried that they'll spend the entire class surfing the internet?" I hadn't even really thought about the question until they brought it up, but it was a good point. Put students in a two-hour class with computer access. How many of them would spend the entire time on Facebook?</p> <!--more--><p>I did have a secret weapon in the classroom. There was a switch that could turn all the monitors off, so they couldn't surf if I wanted to lecture. So when I went into class on the first day, I was prepared to use The Switch whenever I needed the students' attention. But at the end of the term, I had only used The Switch during days when other students were giving formal presentations (and I wanted the presenters to have a polite audience). When I was teaching, I just left their monitors working the entire time. And it was fine.</p> <p>I don't think this would work for all classes, so let me tell you a bit more about how a typical class worked. I'll use an example of something that I thought worked reasonably well: volcanoes.</p> <p>I <a href="http://scienceblogs.com/stressrelated/2009/04/good_examples_of_hurricanes_vo.php">taught volcanoes backwards</a>. In intro geology classes, I always start by naming rocks, and then talking about how melting and crystallization happen, and then about different tectonic causes for melting, and then, finally, about hazards. This class was about hazards, not about geology, so things like magma names were only useful because they allowed the students to translate web information (such as the Global Volcanism Program's website or volcano blogs). So I started with hazards, and then introduced other information (such as magma composition, amount of fluids, or tectonic setting) as necessary. I used a lot of internet exploration of some examples, partly because I wanted the students to get comfortable trying to figure out what hazards might affect a particular area, and partly because the Smithsonian's <a href="http://www.volcano.si.edu/">Global Volcanism Program</a> has fantastic and easily accessible info integrated into Google Earth.</p> <p>Here's the basic class plan: </p><ul><li>Lecture burst (with Powerpoint pictures of examples): basic volcanic hazards (lava, ash, pyroclastic flows, volcanic mudflows). </li> <li>Start exploration - in-class exercise on Moodle (our course management software). </li> </ul><p>Here's the text of the assignment: </p> <blockquote><p>Choose one of the following volcanoes to explore (using Google Earth and the Global Volcanism Program's web site): Pinatubo, Mauna Loa, Vestmannaeyjar, Sakurajima, Tungurahua, Arenal, Ruapehu, Mt. St. Helens. For your volcano, answer the following questions:</p> <p>1) Can you see any evidence of recent eruptions on Google Earth?<br /> 2) Do you see evidence of lava? Ash fall? Pyroclastic flows or mudflows?<br /> 3) What does the topography (landscape shape) of your volcano look like?<br /> 4) When was the most recent eruption (according to the GVP site)?<br /> 5) What kind of lava does your volcano erupt? (GVP website has this info for many volcanoes.)</p></blockquote> <ul><li>Collect first round of info: write names of the six volcanoes on the whiteboard, and list the hazards (determined by students) underneath them.</li> <li>Lecture burst (with Powerpoint pictures of examples): topography of volcanoes (shield volcanoes, stratovolcanoes, cinder cones, craters, calderas).</li> <li>Exploration continued: look at topography of the same volcano.</li> <li>Collect second round of info: add topographic info to notes on each volcano.</li> <li>Lecture burst (with projector off and screen up - use whiteboard beneath screen): volatiles, viscosity, and magma composition (simplified - rhyolite/dacite/andesite/basalt as proxies for amount of silicon and for viscosity).</li> <li>Exploration continued: use Global Volcanism Program info to find out the composition of lavas erupted at the same volcano.</li> <li>Collect third round of info and discuss the growing lists. Discuss what sorts of hazards are typical for various compositions of magma and for various topographic shapes.</li> </ul><p>During the "explorations," I wandered around the room, looking over students' shoulders. Some students had questions about how to find stuff (perhaps because their <a href="http://discovermagazine.com/2009/jul-aug/15-brain-stop-paying-attention-zoning-out-crucial-mental-state">minds wandered</a> during the demo at the end of the lecture burst). Some had questions about what they were seeing on Google Earth. (They had all used Google Earth for two weeks by this time, so most of them weren't asking about how to navigate or how to tilt the image to see the topography.) Some chatted about cool things they noticed. But most just typed answers to their questions, and when they were done, either checked out other volcanoes or surfed the Net.</p> <p>This exploration didn't take nearly as long as I expected - I think I let the class go after about 75 minutes. That was the biggest weakness, I think. I did a similar exercise the next day, looking at the different tectonic settings and finding examples of volcanoes at mid-ocean ridges, volcanic arcs, hot spots, and continental rifts, and that seemed to be enough background to talk about differences in hazards between Iceland and Chaiten. I didn't give them any kind of quiz or exam, or do any sort of cleverly designed assessment to figure out whether they retained more than students in the traditional lectures in my intro class. But they seemed to retain enough, at least based on the later discussions and papers (though some students still thought that lava flows were the worst possible hazard - I can't remember if those students missed class or not).</p> <p>So yes, the students did look at Facebook during class time. But it wasn't any worse than the end of other group activities, whether in lecture or lab. There are always some students who finish quickly, and some who are slow. And typing is much quieter than talking - even if the students were chatting about the same things.</p> </div> <span><a title="View user profile." href="/author/khannula" lang="" about="/author/khannula" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">khannula</a></span> <span>Tue, 06/16/2009 - 03:31</span> <div class="field field--name-field-blog-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-inline"> <div class="field--label">Tags</div> <div class="field--items"> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/teaching" hreflang="en">teaching</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/teaching-toolbox" hreflang="en">teaching toolbox</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/volcanoes" hreflang="en">volcanoes</a></div> </div> </div> <section> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-2499020" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1245142644"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Yeah, I try to be pretty chill about students goofing off with computers, cell phones, etc. For the most part it tends to be quick email checks while they're waiting for other things, or because they finish early, and if it's a 2 or 3 hour lab I think most people stay on task better if they're allowed short breaks. I'll only ask them to stop if it's really distracting (I mean, they still have to finish the work sooner or later). My colleague has a good technique for handling laptops in lectures - he'll make the students with computers look things up and calculate things related to the lecture for him. (I dislike laptops in lectures, but I won't ban them, because I know there are accessibility issues in play there as well.)</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=2499020&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="sQ6NEeEdpZkqje1erQyZMr9tJ8oC8W6Bxr7vEmYvxIE"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://volcanista.wordpress.com/" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">volcanista (not verified)</a> on 16 Jun 2009 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/36190/feed#comment-2499020">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-2499021" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1245143921"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>As a 60+ student returning to grad school, I have been prepared for irritation at the other students' surfing. I have certainly been irritated in the past by profs who slap together a power-point presentation which they read word-for-word, so evidence of the destructive side of computer access, on the instructors' part, was there.</p> <p>My first class, a year ago, was in a small crowded space so I was looking over the shoulder of a student who were constantly popping into other pages. But so what, I concluded -- it was an immersion class, 12 hrs, six days, and I personally went to sleep a few times. I would have preferred being awake and surfing to light snores! So I upgraded to a netbook and will let happen what will happen. And these are theology classes. </p> <p>As a sometime geology student, I would have killed for the availability of Google Earth and the Kim's way of teaching. Forty years ago, I sometimes found myself so baffled by the work-arounds that I missed the whole point of the lesson. Kim, I'm sure what you're doing will make this information much more accessible.</p> <p>Just yesterday, i found the Highly Allochthonous posting <a href="http://scienceblogs.com/highlyallochthonous/2008/01/what_on_google_earth.php#more">http://scienceblogs.com/highlyallochthonous/2008/01/what_on_google_eart…</a> where 63 people analyze a Google Earth image, trying to decide what they're looking at. For teaching or learning, it's a terrific tool.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=2499021&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="i5gqsCucQin3PKORAacddb8Y_R-adpHHC5UQPys2uSg"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://diggitt.blogspot.com/" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Diggitt (not verified)</a> on 16 Jun 2009 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/36190/feed#comment-2499021">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-2499022" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1245147414"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>I love it Kim. I think this an excellent use of modern day technology with getting the students interested and still letting them find the information on their own. This is the sort of thing I hope to find when I host my Wedge topic.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=2499022&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="NeyOYEu32Kl1Wx6oMLGR7O3Lhjpa-h0_cn_Ijzw-cAM"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://jazinator.blogspot.com" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Jim Lehane (not verified)</a> on 16 Jun 2009 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/36190/feed#comment-2499022">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-2499023" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1245148126"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Since wireless became readily available in classrooms, it's been a constant issue for me. But I've found it's a problem that largely solves itself--those students goofing off and not following the lecture largely flunk the class. So in the end there's a certain justice.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=2499023&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="sGCnyO5jbokkar_cUWLGyo2ZLl8llixO18SOdsL_-A0"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://www.blackquartz.com" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">SteveN (not verified)</a> on 16 Jun 2009 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/36190/feed#comment-2499023">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-2499024" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1245250108"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>I'm really torn about the interwebs in the classroom. Yes, excellent tool when controlled, but sometimes it can be a giant distraction. I mean, I know I might drift off into cyberlands if I had been given the chance in some classes (Psych 101, I'm looking at you). Maybe the best tactic is the <em>caveat emptor</em> approach - if you don't pay attention in lecture, you likely won't do well in the tests anyway. </p> <p>That being said, great example of what to teach for volcanoes, Kim! I may just have to steal it.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=2499024&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="v-kYNukeLs2fA6Du-SJqpVefiAsfzFIZiUb1o41fYt0"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://scienceblogs.com/eruptions/" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Erik Klemetti (not verified)</a> on 17 Jun 2009 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/36190/feed#comment-2499024">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> </section> <ul class="links inline list-inline"><li class="comment-forbidden"><a href="/user/login?destination=/stressrelated/2009/06/16/how-i-learned-to-stop-worrying%23comment-form">Log in</a> to post comments</li></ul> Tue, 16 Jun 2009 07:31:27 +0000 khannula 147820 at https://scienceblogs.com Teaching: in praise of rubrics https://scienceblogs.com/stressrelated/2009/06/09/teaching-in-praise-of-rubrics <span>Teaching: in praise of rubrics</span> <div class="field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field--item"><p>I spent last Friday grading for my five-week summer class. It took about nine hours*, which wasn't that bad, considering that the main graded work consisted of papers.</p> <p>I like making students write. It lets me see their thought processes, and helps me differentiate between the students who can repeat what they've heard and the students who think for themselves - something that I especially want to see from an upper-level gen ed class like this one. So I assign papers. But I usually end up regretting that later, and wish I could convince myself that multiple-choice exams were adequate for a class like this.</p> <p>When I started out teaching, it took me a loooooong time to grade papers. I would read each paper once, and then put them aside for a bit, and then read them again, this time with a red pen in hand. And then I would start sorting them into stacks based on how good they were. And THEN I would finally decide what grades to assign. It wasn't very efficient, and although I think it was fair within each class, the students may have had a difficult time figuring out exactly what I wanted.</p> <p>About nine years ago, I was introduced to the concept of grading rubrics. The basic idea behind a rubric is to set up some kind of consistent grading scheme ahead of time, with grades or point values or something assigned to various aspects of the assignment. When I first started using them, the goal was to allow several faculty members to be consistent in grading their lab sections. But the rubrics we used were pretty complicated - there were long lists of things that we would give a few points to, and then we would add up all the points at the end. I found it hard to assign points to so many different things, and it was hard to make the assigned points agree with the grade I wanted to assign to the work.</p> <!--more--><p>My approach to rubrics has changed through time, mostly influenced by some of the <a href="http://serc.carleton.edu/introgeo/assessment/scorerubrics.html">examples</a> I've gotten from people at <a href="http://serc.carleton.edu/index.html">SERC</a>. For this set of papers, I only had two parts to my grading criteria: content, and style. (I separated them because I had learned that some students do critical thinking but haven't mastered the use of spellcheck, and others write beautifully but don't go very deep into the subject. I wanted to be able to acknowledge both combinations.) For each criterion, I described the typical characteristics of papers that would receive various grades. As an example, here is the rubric for grading the content of the final papers:</p> <blockquote><p><i>Content (both presentation and paper)</i></p> <p>4........Meets all content requirements**. Great explanations, and logical and well-defended arguments. Great analysis of past actions (or inactions) to mitigate hazards. (Equivalent grade: A)</p> <p>3........Meets most of content requirements. Good explanations and arguments. Good discussion of past attempts to mitigate hazards, but analysis could be better. (Equivalent grade: B)</p> <p>2........Some problems with content. Location not clear, hazard needs better explanation, discussion of past actions are incomplete, or logic is difficult to follow. (Equivalent grade: C)</p> <p>1........Major problems with content. Major factual errors or flaws in logic, or missing required content. (Equivalent grade: D</p> <p>0........Assignment not completed.</p></blockquote> <p>I based the rubric on past experiences with this assignment - I had a long list of expectations for the paper, and I knew which expectations were typically difficult to meet. In this case, I used numbers rather than letters to make it easier to combine the two grading criteria in unequal proportions (75% content and 25% style). For my writing class, which has only one set of criteria, I only use letter grades.</p> <p>Probably the most useful thing about these rubrics for students was that they were in the syllabus (which was available online, if students lost their original). The rubric went beyond the description of the assignment to tell students how I valued the different things that I told them to do. And I found that, for the most part, students did what they were asked - more so than in previous years.</p> <p>And for me? Well, as long as the rubric reflects my real expectations for the paper, it helps me assign grades quickly. I know the criteria, and as soon as I've read the paper once, I can tell where it lies on the scale. I don't need to read all the papers, and then think about the grading criteria, and then read them again. I can forget what was in the first three papers I read when I'm on number 23, and I don't need to worry that my grading is getting easier or harsher depending on how much caffeine I've ingested. </p> <p>There are downsides to rubrics. The biggest one, for me, is when a paper does something unexpected. In many cases, the unexpected things are fantastic, and I can grade them accordingly. But sometimes papers are great in some ways but lacking something important. Rubrics can commit me to criteria that don't fit every paper perfectly. So they're difficult for new assignments. (I got around that problem for my first two papers, which were new assignments this year, by making the criteria fairly generic. That meant that I took longer to grade the papers - I read each one and made notes to myself about it, and then went back to the papers and decided how the papers fit my grading scale. But I didn't read them all multiple times, at least.)</p> <p>But for assignments that I have used many times before? Well, this year, at least, they kept me sane.</p> <p>*That's grading time for final papers. There were other papers earlier in the term.</p> <p>**There was a separate page explaining the requirements for the assignment.</p> </div> <span><a title="View user profile." href="/author/khannula" lang="" about="/author/khannula" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">khannula</a></span> <span>Tue, 06/09/2009 - 00:03</span> <div class="field field--name-field-blog-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-inline"> <div class="field--label">Tags</div> <div class="field--items"> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/teaching" hreflang="en">teaching</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/teaching-toolbox" hreflang="en">teaching toolbox</a></div> </div> </div> <section> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-2498992" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1244535401"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>I remember a discussion back in 1994 - during a quiet interlude in physics class at school - in which the teacher mentioned that the American educational system is very different from ours in that it makes much use of multiple-choice questions in examinations and very little use of questions answered in the form of an essay or paragraph. I'm convinced that our way is better, but I've met people educated under the American system who are convinced of the opposite.</p> <p>I just rummaged through a drawer and fished out a copy of the First Year geology exam that I did in 1996 (I didn't take geology further than first year) to see what the essay questions were. For your interest, and for comparison with the expectations placed on First Year students in other countries, here they are:</p> <p><i>B1.<br /> __EITHER__ (a) Describe what is implied by (a) the relative geological time scale and (b) the absolute geological time scale. Outline in a general way how the relative time scale is calibrated in numerical years.<br /> __OR__ (b) Regional metaphoric rocks cover vast areas of the Earth's crust. Discuss the mineralogical and textural features that may be used to distinguish between these various regional metamorphics and to determine their geological history.</i></p> <p><i>B2.<br /> __EITHER__ (a) Global climate change is one of the main causes of changes in global sea level. Discuss the possible causes of changes in global climate, giving evidence of major changes in the past.<br /> __OR__ (b) Discuss the processes of plate tectonics and show how rock deformation, igneous activity and metamorphism occur as parts of those processes.</i></p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=2498992&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="KrXqXFRgngb3jKGgJMI1j_p5aJvntdHV1gzzhTPP7Bw"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://outerhoard.wordpress.com/" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Adrian Morgan (not verified)</a> on 09 Jun 2009 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/36190/feed#comment-2498992">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-2498993" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1244550065"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>As I've commented here before, the key is to consider where you want students to get to <i>before</i> you start teaching- more specifically, what you want students to be able to do or demonstrate. Rubrics are the key to looking as objectively as possible at higher order thinking skills. Multiple choice and the like are necessary to evaluate what material is known, but to find out how the students are <i>using</i> what they know, you need to have more complex tasks. Because we have our own preferences, outlining evaluation criteria in a general way, making those criteria clear to learners, then sticking to them and applying them honestly, allows teachers to "grade" consistently and fairly. Good post.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=2498993&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="TGS9JyBI23fISaIHrMFwst5pOcQ_QREAtw0m6_dMyA4"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://outsidetheinterzone.blogspot.com/" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Lockwood (not verified)</a> on 09 Jun 2009 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/36190/feed#comment-2498993">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> </section> <ul class="links inline list-inline"><li class="comment-forbidden"><a href="/user/login?destination=/stressrelated/2009/06/09/teaching-in-praise-of-rubrics%23comment-form">Log in</a> to post comments</li></ul> Tue, 09 Jun 2009 04:03:37 +0000 khannula 147815 at https://scienceblogs.com