Assessment is a crucial component of the learning and teaching process. It helps us determine whether our students really grasp what we expect to teach them. While tests and quizzes are definitely the most popular and beneficial ways to assess. Out of assignments in class (written or other) provide similar insight on our students’ progress. Just as preparing tests that are reliable requires thought and expertise, so too do engaging and efficient assignment writing.
There are many instructors who have found themselves on the receiving of unsatisfactory assignments from students. And then left to wonder what happen. But, often these issues can address later on with a minor tweaking to the original assignment. This article will take a review some of the key elements to consider when assignment writing. We will also suggest simple methods to create an enjoyable assessment experience for everyone participants.
A Few Do’s and Don’ts…
Determining the goals of the project and its vital logistical requirements is an excellent start to developing a successful assignment. But, there are several other simple aspects to take into consideration when creating the final design.
In the beginning Here are a few things you should consider doing:
Do provide detail in your assignment description
Studies have shown that students often prefer certain specific guidelines for completing assignments. And that providing more details (within the limits of) could result in more effective responses from students. One option is to give students physical assignments handouts to use. In addition to or in lieu of a basic description in an outline. This will meet the demands of students who are concrete and provide students something tangible to reference. Additionally, it can be advantageous to provide students the steps or processes needed to finish an assignment. Considering that students, especially the young ones. May require assistance in managing time and planning (MIT 1999).
Use open-ended questions. The most successful and challenging assignments are based on questions that prompt students to think and explain instead of simply giving answer choices that are not explicitly stated in the description of the assignment or included in the brainstorming the heuristics (Gardner 2005).).
Guide students to relevant resources
Offering students suggestions on other options to help can aid them in starting in the right direction independently. The suggestions could include information about resources on campus like The University Writing Center or discipline-specific librarians, who can suggest specific books or journals or even chapters from their textbooks or giving them suggestions for research or links to websites that are acceptable.
Consider offering models
which have proven successful, as well as unsuccessful models (Miller 2007, 2007). The models can be created by previous students or models that you’ve made yourself. Students could be asked to examine the models on their own by using the evaluation criteria you have set and help them visualize the model’s final product, consider their thoughts about the best way to finish the task, and ultimately acknowledge their success in your own efforts.
You should consider introducing a method students can take the assignment writing on their own. In their research, Hass and Osborn (2007) proved the value of students’ personal involvement in completing assignment writing. In fact, students will be more engaged with an assignment when it is meaningful to them personally. Practical, useful, or meaningful beyond the walls of the classroom. You could consider ways to inspire students to draw on their personal experiences and curiosity and to explore or solve an issue that is real or to connect with the wider community. A variety of assignments will also allow students to feel more unique, innovative and at ease.
Following are a few of the elements to avoid when you write your projects:
Don’t ask excessive questions
To challenge students, instructors frequently go in the opposite direction by asking many more inquiries than the students could be able to answer in one assignment, without losing their the students’ focus. Offering an overly specific “checklist” prompt often leads to externally organized papers, in which inexperienced students “slavishly follow the checklist instead of integrating their ideas into more organically-discovered structure” (Flaxman, 2005).
Do not assume or suggest you have the “ideal” response to the assignment. An error that instructors make frequently is to dictate the content of an assignment in a rigid manner or to suggest that there is only one right answer or conclusion to be reached, either directly or in implicit terms (Flaxman 2005). Absolutely, students don’t like feeling that they have to read the instructor’s mind in order to complete an assignment or that their personal ideas aren’t being considered and may lose motivation in the process. Also, avoid assignments that require repetition (Miller 2007). Also, the most effective assignment writing encourage students to think critically and not simply recite lectures or the content of readings.
Do not give unclear or confusing commands
Do your students understand what you are referring to when they require to “examine” or “discuss” the topic? Recall what you learned about your students’ experience and level to help you determine which directions are most logical to them . Also, what topics may require additional explanation or direction and stay clear of words that may confuse them.
Do not place unreasonable time limits or demand the use of inadequate resources
to complete the task. For example, if you have all your students to utilize one resource at the same time, be sure that you have enough copies for everyone to use, or at the very least, keep one copy available within the library. Additionally, ensure that you’re providing your students with enough time to find sources and successfully finish the task (Fitzpatrick 1989).
The assignments we assign our students don’t need to be research reports or papers. There are many possibilities for efficient and innovative methods to evaluate the students’ progress! Here are the most popular:
In the end, the quality of the student’s responses to assignment writing often dependent on the instructor’s careful plan for the task. By being deliberate and thoughtful right from the beginning you can sure that your assignments do not be just efficient assessment tools. However, they will also engaging and inspire your students. If you’d like additional assistance with the design or revision of your assignments. The Teaching, Learning, and Professional Development Center pleased to provide individual consultations. Additionally, take a look at the sources listed below.