Saturday, March 17, 2007


Right now I'm in the middle of an Apline stack of grading. It's interesting because the class that I'm TAing right now is so different from what I've generally taught in the past in content and methods too. As an example, I used to grade fairly long papers every few weeks and maybe a blue book test at the end. Now I'm grading homework assignments and quizzes and tests and all sorts of things every single frickin' day it seems, including some assignments that are incredibly subjective.

The subjective assignments are very difficult for me. If it's a paper or an exam, I can generally get a good grasp on whether or not the student understands the material or not, but with these, well, I'm going more on how I feel that they did. They're group projects too, so there are students who I know are good and competant but got dragged down by a less-than-stellar partner or two. There are also a couple students that I'm pretty suspicious of, but they didn't really do much, so I'm not sure how to evaluate them. As a student I really dislike those kind of assignments, and I have to say that I like them even less as a grader.

I will say that there are a couple of students who are really making me feel very good about this class. It's been like this every class I guess, but it's just because I'm looking at the gradebook right now, it comes to mind. I can see the grades of one particular student slowly, steadily move up and up. She was convinced that this class was just too complicated for her. Not so, I said, not so. A little while ago, she said she may just change her major.

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