Enhancing Pedagogy in the Virtual Classroom: An Exploration of Qualitative Student Assessment

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Conference Proceeding

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Pedagogy, as it is commonly understood, is a generic term describing the educator-centered delivery of content to the learner. In a traditional learning environment, the learner has little, if any, control over how or when he or she interacts with the materials and learning activities. This pedagogical construct offers limited opportunities for one to examine the content through the lens of the individual lived experience, which mitigates the need to learn on the part of the adult learner. According to Alfie Kohn (1993), rewards serve the same function as punishments: They allow those with more power to exert control over those with less. In traditional quantitative student assessment constructs, grades are both punishments and rewards. By eliminating conventional points-based grading, or ungrading, Susan Blum argued, students are empowered to direct their learning outcomes based upon individual motivation and interests. This paper describes the implementation of an ungrading journey, conducted across two separate academic terms, in a senior-level asynchronous online course.

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2020 Adult Higher Education Alliance 44th Annual Conference