Friday, April 22, 2005

Day 4 of my course and it's a marking and assessment workshop of students' essays in KI. Cambridge stressed how scrupulously fair their marking of exam questions is, so today we bashed out what we thought 'fair' meant in practical terms at college (ground-zero) level. The main concern was with Paper 3, the independent study project: just how far does the definition of "independent" extend? As always, there is little consensus between those who want to push for as-much-help-as-possible for the students, and those who interpret "independent" as completely-on-you-own, no help from the teachers at all, or else it's cheating.

Someone has to make a decision on this, but in the meantime, I suggest keeping it real. For the independent study, students should be allowed to seek whatever 'help' they can get as long as the source is relevant to the question they set themselves out to answer; students must credit all their consultations, dialogues, divinations, etc., in the bibliography section of the KI Paper 3. This way, the markers should get a better handle on what kind of 'help' the student got. And 'how much' of it too. Since part of the KI curriculum comprises ethics as a key module, what better way to test the students' internalization of ethical principles than making them be honest about the information and other assistance acquired in the writing of their essay?

Bowling tournament tonight. Bowled a lousy 133 average, and this was after I scored a "turkey" (3 strikes in a row) during the last game. Then my subsequent throws went all over the place. Still, this is roughly my current average -- I haven't made much improvement, personally, but I think as a team the Gutter Boys are slowly getting better. Perhaps next month we'll see some real progress?

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