Teaching Assignments

The purpose of low-stakes assignments is to provide students with an indication of their performance while taking a course and give students an opportunity to improve their performance prior to receiving a final grade, either on an assignment or in a course.

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When assigning students a writing or research project, break down the elements of the project and use one or more as a low-stakes assignment.

Require students to submit their works-in-progress so that they can receive early written feedback and a small grade, which could consist simply of a check or check-minus.

students in their first year, on probation, participating in athletics, PLUS, STARS, etc.) who may need additional assistance and share that information with the students themselves along with their academic advisors.

Feedback should be given often so that students can benefit from having multiple opportunities for improvement.

Around mid-semester or during the planning stages of a major course project, cancel class for a week and ask students to meet with you for conferences instead.

If the class is too large for you to meet with each student individually, assign students to meet with you in groups, or one-on-one with their TA. As Vincent Tinto writes in (2012), "To be effective, assessments must be frequent, early, and formative." Indeed, at colleges and universities recognized by the National Survey on Student Engagement for their success in promoting student's active engagement in their learning: "Feedback from faculty to students is timely and frequent, as documented both by NSSE data and by interviews with students and faculty members" (Kuh, et al. Low-stakes assignments tend to work best when they generate formative feedback regarding where students are in the course, what they are doing well, and where they may need development to ultimately succeed in the class.At De Paul, there is a general expectation that students will be given feedback early in the quarter, and low-stakes assignments are a powerful method of doing so.Providing guidance and feedback that helps students grow and learn is one of the most important – and time-consuming – parts of your job.See how Assignments simplifies the process of creating and grading coursework with flexible, collaborative, and easy-to-use tools from Google.We never assume ownership of your data – that belongs to you and your students. Low-stakes assignments are forms of evaluation that do not heavily impact students’ final grades or other educational outcomes.Once the beta goes live later this semester, you’ll be able to access Assignments right from the tools menu within your G Suite for Education account.Assignments is also available as a Learning Tools Interoperability (LTI) add-on, so it’s compatible with any learning management system (LMS).Any one (or more) of the following elements could be collected and used as a low-stakes assignment: Midway through a writing project, have students bring a full or partial draft of their paper to class and then exchange feedback with a peer.Although the assignment is made by students rather than the instructor, students still receive valuable feedback that they can use to revise their work.


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