The Hypocrisy of Traditional Tests

TL;DR Traditional tests require students to work a few (hopefully) appropriately chosen, illustrative problems to demonstrate proficiency. What does it matter if they do these few problems early in the semester or later in the semester? What does it matter if they do them with us watching or not? What makes one essentially random problem […]

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Oral Interviews as Assessment

TL;DR I have begun using oral interviews as a replacement for traditional written tests and quizzes. There are many advantages for faculty and students, including elimination of paperwork, better chances for understanding students’ state of comprehension, a more relaxed environment, and no possibility for gaming for points. The ongoing pandemic has amplified many questions I […]

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I believe…

I post this with the uncomfortable understanding that in my classes within the context of critical thinking, belief requires no evidence. Everything I say here is, to my knowledge, based on what I hope is good evidence. I will go where the evidence leads me. I intend to update this post frequently. Most of it […]

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Matter & Interactions I, Week 12

I’m getting the jump on this week for a change! This week is all about assessments and building solution portfolios. Taking a cue from something I saw in Kip Thorne’s graduate course on gravitational waves, I’m experimenting with a new way of letting students learn. Here’s the document that I gave students. Here’s the deal. […]

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