7 responses to this post.

  1. Clean, clear, and useful.
    I like your teaching ideas. Might use them at some points, if students are open to the concept of course blogging.


  2. Posted by sarahstewart on November 22, 2008 at 6:04 am

    Thanks for the teaching ideas. I am looking at how I can incorporate blogs into my teaching next year. Enkerli talks about students being open to the concept-how would you motivate them to do it-would you assign marks?


  3. Personally I wouldn’t assign marks, I’d give them away. 10% participation mark for completing 10 blog posts over the term – perhaps with the instructions to try writing a few different styles of post. Ie: one post commenting on another blog post, one commenting on a peer reviewed article, and another “free writing” post where no instructions/demands are given.

    I’d try and use the blog posts as a way to delve into interests without bogging them down with academic formalities/demands. To do that, I’d probably avoid judging/assigning marks.

    Of course some people are motivated by marks, I’m just not one of those people. I see marks as a huge negative that gets in the way of school. But from what teachers tell me, marks are often seen as the only way to motivate students! uggh.

    I’d love to hear more about how it works out if you do go ahead and assign blogging!


  4. Posted by mktheberge on November 25, 2008 at 10:36 pm

    I’m glad you are using categories now. It has made searching through your work easier. However, I was looking for something you wrote about disciplinary boundaries and blogging and couldn’t immediately find it…maybe putting a tag cloud or just a list of tags would be helpful too. You already tag your posts…is there a reason you have avoided the tag clouds so far?


  5. It sucks that blogs don’t have a searchable function because no matter how many tags and categories you make, you can’t find the specific one you are looking for. I suspect they hide on purpose. Once you create them you can’t really control them anymore. Like tribbles.

    My thoughts on the to grade or not grade the posts issue: you need to know your student population–they aren’t all the same. Really motivated and advanced students will jump right in. Others need the grade as motivation. And then there are those like mine who wouldn’t understand how to construct an argument and would post whatever came first to their minds which, unfortunately, wouldn’t be much. I’m not being cynical with that observation, just practical.


  6. I certainly have no expertise when it comes to grading, or to motivating people.

    I am sorting these categories out now, and will definitely include tag clouds soon. For the moment, I’m struggling with my category choices. There aren’t enough of them, but as I add more they seem to turn into disorganized mush.

    Another reason I missed out on tag clouds so far, is that I use certain words like “interesting” way too often, and I hate to be made aware of it.


  7. This is very useful to me too, thanks very much for sharing these ideas. I have to say that I am increasingly feeling impeded by trying to fit every course into a 13-week format, one of the nastiest “developments” of modern Canadian universities. Not only that, some courses have 65, even 85 students, and it becomes nearly impossible to supervise regular posting by everyone and manage other courses at the same time.

    Otherwise, I love the idea, and I will use it whenever I can.


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