Well, I kind of had mixed feelings about today. I really appreciated the first half of the morning where we were able to clarify assignment details. I am actually one of those people that would have preferred it to be done on the first or second day of class, so it was nice to get to it today.
However, the last half of the morning was a bit torturous, especially near the end of our contract negotiations. I did appreciate that Dave wanted our input, but by the end, it got so confusing and overwhelming that I would have preferred that Dave just tell us all what he wanted and we were able to go on our merry way and do it.
That being said, I do love the concept of contract grading and was quite intrigued with it when I read about it in the course contract before we started this course. It allows a way to get students to buy into their learning and pick and choose the things that appeal to them. Coming from my profession, where I support learners that may struggle in certain academic areas, I think having the ability to pick and choose certain assignments would benefit them greatly. For example, if they struggle with writing assignments, perhaps there are other options to choose from that may still allow them to demonstrate their knowledge and understanding.
I like the idea of either getting a “satisfactory” or “not satisfactory” grade, instead of % marks. I think it takes away the competitive edge that’s sometimes exists in classrooms and allows for a more supportive environment for all learners.
Although I found the negotiations somewhat confusing, I did appreciate the end result of being able to change the weight of assignments based on the direction our class took this week. For example, because Twitter has been such an integral part of our class this week, we were able to see it worth more.
In the end, I think it’s definitely beneficial, but I think there is a skill involved in doing it. If I were up there in Dave’s position, I probably would have agreed to anything just to get it over with 🙂
This is me as I was trying to figure out the notes with the fading red marker on the board.