Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Dead-end Writing

Lacking opportunities for advancement, having no exit, is how my Webster's Ninth defines dead-end.

Today I'm thinking about yesterday's WIKI party to share the new site, 18000 Campus Way, and the conversations among faculty and students about why such a writing forum extends our writing.

I can imagine my students differently today because I've actually participated in the 18000 Campus Way WIKI to create a page with relevant links to me and my students.

I try to imagine how it's been for my students when I appear in class with the traditional stack of graded papers, marked, sometimes, with an X to note that their work has been reviewed with no way for them to example of dead-end writing.

1 comment:

larkswindow said...

I got one of those assignments back yesterday for a course I am in. The kind I would love to give feedback on. It was frustrating to see my teachers notes, compared to the feedback my peers gave, on how well the project was presented. It was also frustrating to get a comment back saying I gave little opportunity for my partner to speak. If only instructors and learners could dialog about our assessment. They might hear a different story.

I gave my partner multiple occasions to jump in, even asking if she wanted to respond or add something at times. I knew my partner was intimidated to get up there in the first place. so when she faltered, or shook her head no (did my instructor not see that?) I was not about to leave her hanging out to dry.

This makes me wonder about the kind of tasks our teachers put their learners to. And how well they really pay attention as we present (and if a non-communication class/instructor really ought to grade that harshly on presentation skills in the first place).

After speaking to my teacher in the past about assignments issues, and feeling like it didn't do any good, approaching them seemed like it would be a waste of time. I can tell you the experience, though, reinforces a notion I've heard recently - that the only opinion that really matters in an educational institution is the instructors...cause they're the one who hands out the grade.