On Grading for Professional Growth

Many thanks to Dr. Murat Gungor for inspiring this article!

It’s grading season! At this time of year, grading can seem like a burden you just need to plow through. But it’s also more.

Dr. Murat Gungor (ITS) sent us this great reflection on how he shifted from thinking of grading as a chore to recognizing its value for his growth as a teacher:

Grading–I know, for most of the professors, it’s a burden, takes time, and teaching is more fun than grading. But one thing I realized was that grading made me a better teacher.

How? I noticed that I was spending more time explaining some of the [course] matters than they needed, and some of the subjects I mistakenly thought have the same learning toll, [I was] not giving enough time for. During grading, I can clearly see what topics each of my students did not clearly understand.

This immensely helped me to save time and spend that time on relatively more difficult matters for the students to grasp. I came to know what parts I falsely thought were difficult for them. Without grading, it’s hard to realize these things.

Murat is absolutely right: grading shows us as faculty how effective we are, in addition to assessing students’ progress. And discovering your teaching is less effective in some areas is not a failure. It’s simply something to note so you can adjust your course the next time you teach it.

CLT Advice on Grading and (Self) Assessment

The CLT has many resources on grading efficiently and targeting your grading schemes to assess your priorities in student learning. We also have resources on assessment for student and teacher growth, similar to what Murat describes.

More Faculty Contribution
Leonard Cohen in the Street and on the Screen
A Bit of Advice with Long-Term Effects
The Power of Hope: How Your Grading Policy Can Encourage Learning