2 Comments

  1. Carissa
    June 19, 2012 @ 10:22 am

    Most teacher’s aren’t cruel I promise 😛

    As a student I also remember being anxious of this unknown grade. I often overtalked and visited office hours to be sure they knew who I was. I teach smaller classes (35 tops) so I normally know all my stduents, btu what I like to do is pass out a self assessment sheet half way through(http://eslcarissa.blogspot.com/2012/06/self-evaluation-for-participation.html). I explain that I already know the answers so they don’t need to lie and they can fill it out and guess their grade.

    They also have a chance to add a comment, “Teacher I am sure you’ve seen me texting, I am really sorry its just my girlfriend and I are having problems…” or whatever

    Then I can respond sometimes it is to bring a student up, “Janie your participation is much better than you think. Don’t count yourself short and keep it up!”

    Othertimes I have to let them know I am not deaf or blind, “Susie you take 15 minute bathroom breaks every class and hardly speak in English….”

    I find it a good tool!

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  2. Vicki@collegeparentcentral
    March 24, 2012 @ 8:32 am

    This is an excellent post. Participation points are often very mysterious. Anything that students can do to understand how they are calculated will be helpful. Students should remember that quality usually trumps sheer quantity, but understanding what a professor expects is key. Some professors are very specific and may even keep a track sheet of class comments while others rely on a general impression of how engaged a student is. Knowing the difference will certainly help the student. Great class participation is definitely a skill that can be learned and improved.

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