Re: teaching

Subject: Re: teaching
From: Lise A Hansen <hanse067 -at- MAROON -dot- TC -dot- UMN -dot- EDU>
Date: Sat, 19 Nov 1994 21:48:25 -0600

A teaching assistant in our department is using a variation of the paper
airplane assignment in her technical writing class. She is having
groups create *something* out of leggos. The only criteria is that it
moves. The groups then write instructions for putting their leggo
masterpieces together.
For the record, she got the idea from the Instructor's Manual of Rebecca

To help her prepare for the assignment, a group of us got together and
indulged our inner childs while coming up with possible creations and
dividing, up the pieces, fighting over the wheel pieces, etc. But, I
digress... :)

We have agreed to go into her class and serve as usability testers for
the finished instructions. The students know that we are going to be
testing, and that we also teach in the department. It
may be stretching it to compare this situation to workplace review, but
the arrangement allows students to get feedback from knowledgeable

Another approach I've read about (don't have source with me) involves
having students from different sections of the same class
exchange drafts. I haven't tried it, but it sounds like an interesting
way to instill responsibility.

Lise Hansen
University of Minnesota

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