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Posts by Elizabeth Manwell

A red fresco with a circle depicting a man holding a book

Blog: Equitable Assessment in the Classics Classroom, Part 3 of 3: “Alternative” Assessment: Ungrading in Classics

August 1, 2022

This is Part 3 of a three-part series. Find Part 1 and Part 2 here.

There is nothing ideologically neutral about grades, and there is nothing ideologically neutral about the idea that we can neatly and tidily do away with grades. We can't simply take away grades without re-examining all of our pedagogical approaches, and this work looks different for each teacher, in each context, and with each group of students.

— Jesse Stommel, “Grades are Dehumanizing

A group of men in togas sitting and standing outside near some columns and a tree

Blog: Equitable Assessment in the Classics Classroom, Part 2 of 3: Labor-Based Grading in the Classics Classroom

July 25, 2022

This is Part 2 of a three-part series. Find Part 1 and Part 3 here.

Only by abandoning traditional grading and performance assessment practices can we achieve our ultimate educational objectives.

Alfie Kohn

Tradition in Classics is powerful. When the three of us started teaching as graduate students, we drew on our experiences as undergraduates in the many Classics courses we had taken, particularly when it came to assessing students. This is not a bad thing! We all need to start somewhere while we are growing as educators. Nevertheless, it was Read more …

A bronze statue of a girl sitting on the side of a bench in reading pose, though she does not hold a book. Her hand is open as if a book is missing. She is barefoot, her hair tied up, wearing a draped dress.

Blog: Equitable Assessment in the Classics Classroom, Part 1 of 3

July 18, 2022

This is Part 1 of a three-part series. Find Part 2 and Part 3 here.

Picture a student getting back a graded essay or exam. They glance at the letter or number at the top of the page and throw the paper in the recycling on their way out the door without reading the feedback, even when you think it will help them succeed on the next major assignment.

Imagine being consistently impressed by a student’s in-class work. Their insights and positive attitude contribute significantly to the learning environment. However, they do very poorly on the first major assessment, a midterm exam. Both of you are surprised and dismayed, and the student is discouraged.

Consider Read more …