Documentation:Learning Principles & Strategies/Case Study Philosophy/Course Summary

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Context: There are quite a few writing assignments in the courses I teach: philosophy courses and Arts One (a first-year, interdisciplinary, writing-intensive course). Over and over I have seen the feedback I provide on essays go unused on later essays. Students make the same mistakes even after I have pointed them out on earlier work. This is most obvious with issues such as structure and the need for further explanation and/or textual support for claims – content concerns necessarily differ from essay to essay.

What do students need to learn? How to write clearly, cohesively and appropriately for the context.

What has been your approach to teaching? In the past, I have provided very detailed feedback on essays, pointing out nearly every concern I find and suggesting how problems may be fixed. There are at least two reasons why this is problematic:

  1. students get overwhelmed with feedback and may find they can’t possibly take it all in;
  2. with me finding and fixing all of the problems, I am not encouraging them to do that on their own.

What approach are you experimenting with?

What are students learning?

What are you learning?