Friday, November 04, 2016

I'm a grading MACHINE

I give my students back all of their work in a week from the day they turned it in without fail, and right now, I am staring down the barrel of 39 research paper proposals, so I really can't say much.  EXCEPT, I have a TA to grade my discussion boards and the longer discussion papers my students write, so I really only have to grade short weekly papers and the research project.  And the midterm.  And I have broken the research project up into 4 bite-size parts, so none of us gets overwhelmed.  So the 1-week turn around thing is a luxury-- I get that.  But even so, I usually push it off until the last second and FREAK OUT.

Well, not this time!

I sure did procrastinate the first 2 days the papers were in my hot little hands, but then yesterday, I made 5 piles (because I have five days left until my class meets again) and divided the papers evenly into the piles (only 7 to grade on Monday-- what a luxury that will feel like) and stuck a binder clip on each pile and a post it reminding me what to grade which day.  I also grade with a timer-- I don't always fit all of my comments into the allotted time, but when the timer rings, I know I need to get my shit together and finish up.

I LOVE these papers because no one chose the same topic, and my students are brilliant (and I have a paper about the Brangelina scandal as it unfolded in OK magazine, and that's totally my jam, as well as 2 papers about beauty company's Instagram feeds (different beauty companies), so they practically read themselves.  Best.  Job.  Ever.

And sometimes, I can work from bed, so that's a plus, too.

All right-- back to it.  I have 6 more to go today.

(Also, I cannot master grading on the screen-- any advice?  My comments are either too long-- like with Track Changes-- or too brief (summative comments at the end).  I use rubrics for the weekly assignments, but I want to say more than a rubric would allow on these proposals because I think the feedback is more important than justifying the score because there is revision involved.  I had meetings with everyone last week to talk through the project, which helps when I go to give feedback on the proposal because I know back story that sometimes wasn't included, but I really want to acheive effective and efficient dialog through written comments, too).

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