Ungrading to Break Barriers Toward Learning (9.15-12.16.22)

Ungrading to Break Barriers Toward Learning (9.15-12.16.22)

Sep 15th

Nick Covington & Chris McNutt

Date: September 15 – December 16, 2022
Course #: EDMA 288:735
Number of Graduate/License Renewal Credit Hours: 3
Registration Deadline: September 15th @ 5:00 p.m.

Instructors: Nick Covington & Chris McNutt

Modern grading systems are a relatively recent arrival in the history of education that, despite our best efforts to reform them, have continued to rank and sort, isolate, and demotivate students – especially those at the margins. What if we could cultivate a classroom culture that allowed learning to flourish in the absence of grades and let students create their own learning narrative through iteration, evidence-gathering, and reflection? By reframing assessment in these ways, educators can truly create an engaged student-centered learning experience for all. In this course, you will learn about the history of grades and grading, the research surrounding assessment, alternative proposals, and practical application in multiple school settings (even those that require a grade). In this course, participants will complete a gradeless portfolio to experience gradeless course design and to be better prepared to implement similar models in their own classroom contexts.

Learning Objectives
Upon completion of this course, participants will be able to:
1. Recognize the history and impact of grades and grading on learners;
2. Utilize systems-based thinking toward equitable practice;
3. Synthesize the hidden curriculum of education toward “creative noncompliance”; and
4. Implement ungrading systems to support student well-being and engagement.

Course Topics
1. Why Ungrade? The History and Impact of Grades & Grading
2. Research on Assessment
3. Systems-Based Thinking
4. Equity-Based Practice
5. The Hidden Curriculum
6. Implementation Strategies
7. Creating Human-Centered Classrooms / Expanding Progressive Education

Grading is the same whether the course is taken for graduate credit or for license renewal. Participants are required to participate in all forums and complete all assignments. Students will complete a portfolio (“Learning Journey”) (LJ) over the course, which will be given feedback.

A Rubric can be found in the Syllabus, which can be found at the top of the first page of registration.

The Syllabus will include detailed information regarding the Grading Criteria, Grading Policy, Foundational Texts, the Course Outline, etc.

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**Important Registration Information for You**
Please read through as these are Frequently Asked Questions in which answers can be found within this page.

  1. The instructor will email you once the start date arrives with information on how to get started in the class:
    1. Emails regarding this class will come from the instructor/organization with this email address nick.covington@gmail.com;
    2. Be sure to check your junk/spam/clutter folders-mailboxes in case the email isn’t recognized as known mail; and
    3. If you are using a school email address, many schools have their network security filters set up to push unknown emails directly to spam and you will not even see it – if this is the case you will need to either talk to your IT department and request emails with the email address be allowed through or let us know you want to use a different email address.
  2. The Tabs at the top of the registration page have important additional information regarding this class:
    1. The Syllabus gives information of what will be expected of you in the course. Generally, it will include course policies, rules and regulations, required texts, and a schedule of assignments:
    2. The Fees will let you know how much this class will cost depending on the type of credit you want to take it for as well as if you are an ISEA member or not:
    3. The Cancellation Policy is important so you know how to cancel if you need to and how refunds are handled: and
    4. The ISEA Official Transcript page tells you how to access your transcript once the class has ended.