I’ve been teaching online since last century and in 2006 I was a sessional lecturer with a particularly heavy workload with over 600 first year students in an introductory communication course with 5 small written assignments, a presentation and a 2000 word essay. I had a limited amount of time to do the required grading and marking.
Like most teachers in this position I started experimenting with different ways to provide quality, consistent feedback on assessment and keep my workload to a manageable level. I used a variety of systems including macros that inserted full comments when a code it typed, Word comments, tracked changes and autotext, Excel based rubrics and even some web based grading systems. Over several semesters created and refined the eMarking Assistant add-in for Word. If I am honest, there may have been a lottle element of grading procrastination as I enjoy programming much more than looking at the 500th version of the same assignment!
The current version of eMarking Assistant allows you to:
- create and use of detailed reusable comments that can be picked from a floating toolbar
- create and use automated rubrics which rescale, total and convert the mark to a percentage and grade and
- use some other grading tools e.g. highlight a misused or overused word or phrase throughout the assignment or google a phrase from within Word.
I quickly realised that students appreciated the more detailed, timely and consistent feedback that I could provide. Soon my colleagues started asking if they could use eMarking Assistant and in 2009 I started selling eMarking Assistant. You can view the history of versions or suggest an enhancement.