Crowdsourcing in the classroom


Could crowdsourcing be used within the classroom for marking assignments? One professor at Duke University teaching a “This Is Your Brain On The Internet” class, tried this method in 2009 allowing students to evaluate class assignments, where crowdsourcing was used to grade each other. Professor Cathy N. Davidson tested this assessment approach via dividing fifteen students into rotating teams of two and assigned them to teach each class/come up with assignments by using a list of sources she provided. The same students were then to read and grade each assignment. Much criticism was written on Professor Davidson’s blog about her “experiment” yet she continued to defend it saying; “Education is way behind just about everything else in dealing with these [media and technology] changes. It’s important to teach students how to be responsible contributors to evaluations and assessment. Students are contributing and assessing each other on the Internet anyway, so why not make that a part of learning?” There wasn’t much of an update or final evaluation of the “experiment” however, I do believe Professor Davidson may have been correct in introducing this scheme in the classroom. The question is will this become a sign of the future? If the use of crowdsourcing assessments and grading in the classroom increases strict rules should apply to achieve “fair” marking. All in all though, a great and innovative idea.

Sources:
Hastac Blog
Article on Crowdsourcing Grade
Facebook page on Crowdsourcing In Education
Crowdsourcing image

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