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More Credit: the Alternative to Extra Credit

November 17, 2010

It is that time again.  The end of the semester.  When grades are not what we want them to be (students and teachers both, if you are a teacher like me who worries that low grades are a reflection of my teaching) and time is running out.  Lucky for my blogging students, they are enrolled in one of UNM’s Freshmen Learning Community Courses:  English 101 (Composition: the reason they are blogging) is linked to Theater 122 (Theater Appreciation: the reason they are blogging about relationships)

In their theater link of the course, Susan is guiding the students through a devising process where they will write, perform, and stage their own production on an area/issue that most affects them.  Our class chose the all encompassing theme of Relationships.  Last year’s class chose Addiction.  You can view their performance here:


This year, Susan is working with the students to incorporate projected images and videos, and here’s where the “extra” credit blogging will come in. I have invited my students to post the following:

  1. A brief explanation of something you are currently devising/rehearsing for the final project.  This should just give us some context (for I, like you dear readers, haven’t been participating in this process).  Tell us what you are doing in the particular scene, how it came about, and anything else you might want to include.
  2. Include an image or a video that you think may best complement this skit.  Think of finding images that are interesting or compelling, complex and, most importantly, usable.  Your goal here is to help your tech crew compile images that will work either before, during, or after each individual skit. 

Rather than getting extra credit, I am offering a perfect score to my students’ lowest Low Stakes assignment.  (For instance, if they scored a 15 out of 30 on a low stakes assignment given at any point in the semester, I will change that grade to a perfect 30).  Happy blogging = hopefully, happy grades.

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