Grading written assignments: How objective can it be?


McLennan Library Building MS-74 (use Service Point entrance (3415 McTavish Street), 3459 rue McTavish, Montreal, QC, H3A 0C9, CA


In many courses, the most common document used to assess student learning is the essay or term paper. These types of assignments, however, often present evaluation nightmares for the teachers who have to grade them.

The aim of this workshop is to examine ways in which teachers can grade longer assignments effectively. The workshop will help participants identify, articulate, and communicate their own standards and criteria with the aim of promoting fair and efficient grading. Specifically the workshop will examine the reasoning skills required to produce a summary, an expository research paper, an argumentative research paper and a critical review. Most importantly, it will demonstrate how clearly stated criteria can encourage self-assessment and increase learning for all students.


This workshop will give participants the opportunity to:

  • examine their  beliefs about the role of assessment in their courses
  • recognize that every assignment is unique in terms of the intellectual abilities or thinking skills that it asks students to use
  • view an academic paper as a Performance-Based Assessment (PBA) which requires the articulation of criteria and standards of performance
  • experience a process that can be used individually or with colleagues to generate standards for written assignments

Note: Light refreshments will be served - bring your coffee mug!

Register here >>

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