Rethinking (and then rethinking some more) grading systems in introductory and advanced statistics courses

Kelsey Grinde Speaker
Macalester College
Wednesday, Aug 9: 8:55 AM - 9:15 AM
Invited Paper Session 
Metro Toronto Convention Centre 
In the college classroom, grades are the primary avenue by which we quantify and communicate student achievement. In setting up grading systems for our courses, we make countless decisions: Should the project be worth 25 or 30 percent of the final grade? Will I drop the lowest quiz score? What penalty (if any) should I implement for late work? These seemingly small decisions can have a surprisingly large impact on the grades that we assign and the type of learning and understanding that we privilege. In conversation and collaboration with colleagues at Macalester College, I have been drastically and continually rethinking my approach to grading in recent years. In this talk, I will share some of the changes I have made to the way I grade in both introductory and advanced undergraduate statistics courses. I will highlight recent successes in my shift toward ungrading and my efforts to more intentionally and directly involve students in the grading process. I will also discuss changes that have been less successful, sharing lessons learned along the way and areas for continued rethinking.