Showing posts from January, 2016

Save Time When Grading Students' Blogs

In 2014, I have experimented with student blogging and loved it, minus one thing: how long it took me to grade. For each student, I would have to find their blog (typically collected into a Google Form), find the specific post (hopefully I didn't far behind in grading), read it and then find them in the grading system to enter the grade. This became twice as time consuming when I had students commenting on each other's blog as assignments.

I tried having students copying and pasting their comments into a spreadsheet so I could keep better track, but many students forgot, pretended that they wrote a comment, or messed with each other's responses since it was an all access spreadsheet. I even tried doing everything in a spreadsheet where each student had a custom tab, but this was difficult to manage with seven classes and I wanted students to actually be publishing on a blog.

After about three years, I feel like I have finally perfect system for myself: I have students post…

Why I Want Students Like Mulder and Scully

As January 24 quickly approaches, I have been re-watching The X-Files, one of my favorite television shows. While I could go on and on about all of the things I love about the series, one of my favorites is its ability to get the viewer thinking; regardless of how many times I have watched Mulder and Scully race to uncover the truth, I'm left contemplating something new. This time I've realized how I want my students to be like Mulder and Scully.

In case you are unfamiliar, Fox Mulder is a strong believer in the supernatural while Dana Scully is a strong believer in the scientific method. With most of their cases, Mulder and Scully are obviously at odds with each other; one advocating for the science-fiction explanation and the other advocating for the science-reality explanation. As the show develops, both Mulder and Scully realize that they rely on each other's strengths to solve their cases:

This is further demonstrated when Mulder is abducted and Scully is left with a …