Module Three and draft marking

I need more people draft marking on Module Three. But how do I keep track of what is happening and how do we make sure those who haven’t been doing it for so long can do it well ? What does knowing how to do it entail ?
How did I learn to do it ?

  1. Reading the guidelines and reports.
  2. Reading (and draft marking) lots of assignments.
  3. Seeing what passed and what didn’t.
  4. Being standardized.

So if I learnt that way, isn’t that enough ?
But then if I can make the process more efficient / faster, why not do so ? It could preempt me needing to answer lots of queries and might avoid other learning curve problems.

Tutors need to read the guidelines – that might go without saying, but there is actually a lot more information available now. I was on the receiving end of it as it came out bit by bit. If you sat and read through all the guidelines and all the advice available in the three reports, how much of it would stick ? In the face to face sessions for CPs and the self study notes I filter, pick and deliver bits of this with tasks (usually things that require them to pick out key points / create check lists). Could tutors do the same ? Do they need to ? Some do anyway. In fact it is more important for the tutor to do this than for the CPs. If CPs get it right, they don’t need to be able to articulate what the underlying structure of the assignment is, just to achieve it. Tutors need to know, to check consistently that elements are there (or not). So would it not be valid to provide the same kind of self study tasks for tutors ? They could use the ones in the CP self study tasks, but would they think to ? Then those who like some systematic support could do and compare against keys. In fact in the longer term a quick reminder quiz would be nice (for me too). Perhaps one for each section that you could use to brush up. Could use in the CP Moodle too.

I’ve experienced three different ways of being standardized

1. Pick a candidate, everyone blind marks, someone collates and publishes the collated version.
You see comments on things you may have missed. Must take a long time to collate.
It is not threatening – only you and the collator see yours. There is a lack of negative feedback. You have to work out for yourself if what you said was not right or not strong enough.
House style requirements can be pointed out by the collator. You have to mark one extra.

(I’d have to get them to do the chosen one and collate it and get it back to them before they started marking ‘proper’. Can be hard meeting deadlines as it is. But could choose an old one that had key pluses or minuses to be noticed and get ahead that way … but would that feel even more of a waste of energy to some ? marking something that had already been marked ?)

2. Mark one of yours and send it to a colleague (you get one from a different colleague). They comment.
You read someone else’s marking quite carefully. You often see phrases you like (and can borrow). It is hard to disagree with a peer, you often don’t state things strongly for fear of offending.
You don’t have to mark any extra (no one pays forstandardizing time). It can be skimped, 2nd tutor can just say they ‘agree’ if no structure suggested for feedback.
Reading someone else’s is quicker than marking one. You only see one other person’s ideas.
Need arbitration in case of no agreement.

(Easy for the co-ordinator, but then I don’t see what people are doing either)

3. You mark your first one and send it to a central coordinator. They give feedback on it (what is nice, what could be improved).
It doesn’t take extra time. You don’t see anyone else’s.
You are told specifics – where things are right / wrong / enough / too vague etc. Sounds as though it would be the most work for the central coordinator.
It is private to you and the coordinator.

(Quite a lot of work centrally, but with the built in opportunity to direct firmly if needed).

How can I combine elements of all three ?
Just by rotating the systems ? Could use one for each draft.
But then need different instructions and approach each time. Takes people time to get the hang of anything.
But maybe that is good – not routine, have to think about it.
Is there one way that includes negative feedback, seeing what others wrote and yet is not too threatening.

Have about 6 weeks to come up with an answer. Though there will always be future courses.


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