Wednesday, January 10, 2007

This should help things a little

My new grading standard for class participation
Classroom Participation: Most classes will contain periods of open discussion, because conversation is at the heart of the philosophic enterprise. You cannot understand a philosophical idea unless you have actively played around with it in conversation. To encourage involvement in conversation, I have made class participation 5% of your grade. You will get a 2.0 for participation if you speak when called on, but are otherwise disengaged. Someone who volunteers frequently receives a 3.0. A 4.0 is reserved for those who not only participate in conversations, but follow up on the ideas offered by others. The highest grade goes not to those who answer my questions, but those who help others talk through their own ideas.
I'm pleased with myself here because the grade scale better reflects the philosophical motivations for grading participation.

4 comments:

jo(e) said...

Only 5 percent? That doesn't seem like very much to me.

Rob Helpy-Chalk said...

I have lots of other grades that essentially measure participation, including the online discussion forum, question cards, daily in class work, and attendance.

Brock said...

Sigh. I miss philosophical conversations. I don't think I've had one since I dropped out of grad school in 1997.

And now you have to go and tell me I can't understand a philosophical idea without conversing about it.

I think you're right. And you have no idea how sad that makes me.

Chris D'Amato said...

Thanks! Have stolen with modification for high school physics.