November 28, 2019

7 Ways to save time, while increasing learning

When I became a teacher after a decade as a project manager I could feel the inefficiency within HE teaching and felt that my contribution to L&T scholarship would be associated with productivity. However, I became so interested in pedagogy that I forgot about this. In hindsight, I didn’t know enough about why certain parts of teaching did or did not work to be able to optimise their efficiency. Now that I have developed a sufficient understanding of L&T I’d like to look again at where teaching can be streamlined to make workloads more manageable with at least a neutral impact on learning. Read more

April 25, 2019

Specs Grading for Groupwork - the challenge

For the module that I’m planning to introduce specs grading there will be a significant amount of groupwork. I’ve always considered assessment of group work as a necessary evil in my teaching. I’ve never found a satisfactory way to provide the necessary experience of the good, bad and ugly of working in a group, both encouraging collaboration and rewarding individual achievements. Will specs grading help or hinder? I’ve found very little on the subject discussed on the internet. Read more

April 18, 2019

Mockups for a Specs Grading App

Update 18-Apr-2019: I’ve cobbled together a script that will generate reports for students depending on which assessments they have passed. The code is here. I expect that one of the challenges of Specs Grading is managing student completion and ensuring all students have up to date information on their progress. I’m not sure that Blackboard will suit this. I’ve mocked up what an app to allow teachers to manage this data would look like. Read more

April 12, 2019

Specifications Grading: Introduction

I’ve become interested in an approach to grading that I have learned is called Specifications Grading. This tries to solve problems with the common approach of calculating module grades as the average across assessments, each rated 0-100%. The ones that I feel most strongly about are: Aggregating performance across several assessments results in numbers that are difficult to interpret. A student earning 90%+ probably achieved all of the module outcomes, a student earning less than 10% probably achieved none of them. Read more

March 24, 2019


I hope to post occasional writing on my thoughts on learning and teaching. Written for students and other teachers.

© Richard Craggs 2019

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