The Reason for Alternative Assessment: A Case Study from CU FREN 1200

It’s one thing to study alternative assessment, to watch students flourish with more control and choice over their work, to write about its merits, but it’s quite another to receive an assignment that turns an entire student experience upside-down, simply because they were given a completely different format in which to express their learning. This student, I’ll call them D, struggled all semester. No, that’s … Continue reading The Reason for Alternative Assessment: A Case Study from CU FREN 1200

The Fun Case for Alternative Assessment

“I had so much fun grading papers last night!”  Not a sentiment frequently heard, expressed, or even thought. Yet this legitimately describes my experience a few weeks ago after reading my students’ Beowulf quizzes. Over the last several semesters, I have shifted my idea of what evaluation should look like. We are so accustomed to one type of exam or paper (especially in literature fields), … Continue reading The Fun Case for Alternative Assessment

A Song of Medieval Boulder, vol.1

In this second Fall offering my Medieval Epic Through the Lens of Game of Thrones class, I wanted to shake up my assignments a bit, especially after researching into alternative assessment and inclusive teaching practices. In my class, this sometimes takes the form of options of assignments so that students can demonstrate their learning in a manner that resonates with them. In keeping with the spirit … Continue reading A Song of Medieval Boulder, vol.1

Playing Dante in 2015

Dante’s Inferno is a text that is as difficult to read as it is fascinating. However fun it is to teach, it can be frustrating for students to encounter the hundreds of characters whose names are devoid of meaning and context. Like Dante himself, students need a guide to take them through Hell. But how to teach them to guide themselves? In line with my Fren 1200 course … Continue reading Playing Dante in 2015

Student Poetry, vol.2

This is a followup to the post Cross-Cultural Student Poetry as it comes from the same assignment. Once again, in my Fren 2120 class of  Spring 2015, I have a few students who demonstrated mastery of French in only their fourth semester, composing thoughtful and moving poems. These two in particular took philosophical views of their lives and used them to recreate the original poem. Rather than … Continue reading Student Poetry, vol.2