Grading performance through EXP

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  • #34829

    In conventional grading schemes, the student’s performance is represented by a grade which is usually computed from their grades in the various exams, tests and assignments. That is a decent approach, but it has two problems:

    1. The students only get to feel rewarded for their participation in the course at some select points of the semester.

    2. It is hard for the professor to reward a raise in the grade for other forms of student participation, like attending the lectures or helping classmates in the course’s forums. To combat these two issues, we use the game design concept of levelling through the collection of experience points (EXP) for inspiration. Existing educational platforms can be altered so that each student has their own level (which corresponds to a conventional grade). Each time the student engages in some way with the course, they will be awarded with some amount of EXP (the amount depends on the way they engaged and how well they did), and if they gain enough they will advance to the next level. This approach solves problems 1 and 2 as following:

    1. The students can see their level (or grade) increase with each minor thing they do for the course, so they feel motivated throughout all of the semester and not only during before a test (avoiding the formation of bad habits such as cramming).

    2. The awarding of EXP will happen automatically, so the professor is relieved from the work of assigning grades to the students and can design a course that rewards more forms of participation.

    This approach can become even more satisfying for the students by implementing features such as badges, special forum profile appearances or titles for the high-level students. Also, this grading method can obviously be applied to a course that is based on PBL.

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