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When to Judge: on Evaluation in Tutorials April 24, 2012

I try not to be too evaluative in my tutorials (or even my Written Feedback).  Of course, there’s always a time to reassure the writer that they’re on the right track, or that some turn of phrase is well done and should be retained, even exploited or learned from.  There’s also the awareness, though, that placing a value judgment or (heaven forbid) a letter grade on someone else’s work isn’t my job.  For one thing, what if the professor disagrees with me and I’ve now misled the student into thinking their work is one thing, when it’s really being graded as another?  Far more importantly: did the writer come in for a pat on the head, or for constructive criticism and help? (more…)