I heard a great presentation from Cath Ellis from University of Huddersfield on introducing an e-submission policy and using Turnitin’s online marking tool GradeMark as part of the Maximising Turnitin session in June. Prior to using GradeMark, Cath felt that her feedback was inconsistent. For the first five essays she might have corrected a mistake and given feedback on how to avoid this issue, but found she was giving less feedback as she progressed through scripts. It is important to point out that Cath’s previous marking was done using handwritten comments rather than typed feedback. Cath said that her feedback on common areas for development and common strengths is consistent using GradeMark. She has been able to automate a lot of the operational feedback on how to write using QuickMarks, which are standard feedback annotations that can be re-used. Cath said that by automating the operational feedback using QuickMarks she can now concentrate on providing feedback on the content. Her students have said that they are finding the feedback comprehensive and clearer than previous handwritten comments.
Cath has done some great diagnostic work using GradeMark reports where she has analysed QuickMarks to identify common areas for development. This resulted in a peer workshop where students who scored well in a particular area facilitated a workshop for students who were having difficulty. Analysing grades for each of the criteria in GradeMark rubrics allowed the teaching team to identify areas for development and change how this area was taught in subsequent years.
Check out Cathellis13.blogspot.com for 4 top tips on using GradeMark that has led to 3-4 minute less marking time per script. See also Cath’s Prezi on using GradeMark and the new work flows enabled by the e-submission policy.
It is worth noting that City now has a full licence for GradeMark which is accessible through the Turnitin assignment activity in Moodle. We have reported issues of slowness using GradeMark, to Turnitin, during busy assignment times. If you are planning on using GradeMark, do work closely with your local support teams and the LDC and keep us informed of any performance issues so that we can liaise directly with Turnitin and work to find a solution for this.