M.Ed Correspondence Course In Ignou Assignments

Processing of Assignments in the UKOU

(A) Tutor-Marked Assignments

A student, on completing an assignment, will enter his name address and the assignment number on Form PT3—a four part form supplied by the University and attach this form to the assignment script. Form PT3 is shown on the other page. The student will then post the assignment to his tutor-counsellor (Foundation Courses) or course tutor (Higher Level Courses). On receiving the assignment, the tutor, using the Tutor Notes (making guide) provided by the Course Team, and in his dual role of both teacher and assessor, will (1) enter appropriate teaching comments on the script (2) enter the question grades and an overall grade for the script on the PT3 from and (2) enter an overall comment regarding the script on the PT3 form. The tutor in the case of most Arts; Social Sciences, Education and some Technology courses will use a six-point letter scale. In the case of Mathematics, Science and the majority of Technology courses, the tutor will use the numeric scale.

When the assignment is marked and graded, the tutor will retain one copy of the PT3 for his personal record and send the script, together with the remaining three parts of the form, to the Assignment Handling Office in Walton for processing. On receipt, the script and the three parts of the form are processed as follows:

The script plus one copy of the PT3 form are returned to the student. One copy of the PT3 form will be sent to Management services where the grades/scores will be recorded by the computer and stored on the student record file. One copy will be sent to the student's Counsellor. The diagram given on the other page summarises the operation involved in the marking and processing of tutor-marked assignments.

(B) Computer-Marked Assignments

On completing a CMA, the student posts it to the Assignment Records Office in Walton Hall. The forms are processed through a document reader which validates the date on the forms and outsorts automatically those which contain errors such as incorrect personal identifiers and those received after the appropriate cut-off-date. Using parameters provided by the Course Team, the assignments are scored numerically from 0–100 but the results of a CMA are not despatched to students until the cut-off-date for that assignment. The letters are produced according to which level(s) the Course Team has requested. The diagram given on the other page summarises the operations involved in the processing of computer-marked assignments.

The number of assignments set, and the way in which the grades/scores are combined, varies from course to course. In some cases 'formative assignments are set, which are used purely for teaching purposes and not for assessment. No grades are recorded for these assignments.

If a student wishes to appeal against the grade awarded or to query any comments made by the tutor, he/ she will return the assignment to the tutor for review. If the student is not satisfied with the action taken by the tutor regarding the appeal/query, he/she is required to send it to the regional Staff Tutor for consideration.

(C) Feedback to Course Teams

Analyses of the results of each TMA are provided by the computer and sent to the Course Team concerned, so that they can (1) identify assignments that have proved to be too difficult, too lenient or ineffective for assessment purpose and (2) areas of the course that are not being taught effectively. The Course Team, on receiving the computer analyses for the assignments and also reports from tutors and Staff Tutors on TMAs, can take remedial action designed to help both the present students (through the tuition and counselling service, through television and radio broadcasts, and through printed 'Stop-press' items) and also students taking the course in future years (through revision of course materials).

In the case of CMAs an early warning analysis is produced based on those assignments sent in well before the cut-off-date. The purpose of this analysis is to identify possible errors in the scoring parameters, or ambiguities in the questions, so that amendments to the scoring parameters may be made if necessary before the results are sent to students on the cut-off-date. In addition, an Item Analysis is produced for each computer-marked assignment on the forth working day after the published cut-off date for the assignment.

Processing of Assignments in IGNOU

On completing a TMA a student submits it to his Study Centre which in turn sends it to the concerned academic counsellor (tutor). The academic counsellor, writes tutor comments on the script enters the grade for the script and writes global comments on the Assessment Sheet which is in triplicate, The study centre receives the assessed script from the academic counsellor, notes grade in its records and returns the script to the student with a copy of Assessment Sheet. One copy of Assessment Sheet is sent to the University headquarters and the one retained at the study centre. So far CMAs are concerned they are directly sent to University headquarters by the students. Assessment Sheet is shown on the other page. Assignment work in IGNOU is a complete affair. The environment of assignment is diagrammatically shown on the other page.

Monitoring of Assignments

The work of commenting, grading or marking assignments needs to be monitored for ensuring effective distance teaching learning. Monitoring serves many purposes

  • uniformity of marking standards
  • feedback to part-time staff on the work they are doing
  • feedback to course teams on students progress on their work
  • rescheduling assignments
  • reducing/increasing the number of assignments in the course
  • modifying the advice and guidance given to learners on how to answer
  • changing the tutor notes
  • modifying the course material

Monitoring system is prevalent in all the developed distance teaching institutions. One of the aspects of the British Open University teaching system frequently praised is the monitoring system. In this system, samples of each tutor's marked scripts are reviewed by full time academics responsible for course presentation or for tutor appointments and supervision. Monitors write reports on the tutors' work and these reports are communicated to tutors in a variety of ways via staff tutors in the Regional Centres of the University. The system provides opportunity for rendering an academic's teaching visible to another; thus enabling staff to learn from each other's work and advice. Each Academic Faculty of the University has its own monitoring procedure.

Nature of Monitoring Comments

In general, monitoring comments should be positive, constructive and supportive if they are to enhance performance. This would include according to Cole, Coats and Lentell:

  • linking comments to tuition skills and not simply to academic content. Remembering that the role of the correspondence tutor is to help the student to improve, monitors' comments should embrace all aspects of teaching and not just the handling of content. For instance this might include commending the relationship the tutor is seeking to establish, the tone of the tutor's comments etc;

  • commending and reinforcing the strengths of the tutors teaching-not simply picking up on any deficiencies;

  • giving positive guidance where appropriate eg: not just passing judgements but indicating why a grade or a point is inappropriate;

  • explaining and clarifying evaluative comments eg: not just passing judgements but indicating why a grade or a point is inappropriate;

  • making reasonable and realistic demands which are likely to lead to improvement and not be regarded as excessive or exploitive;

  • generally showing respect for the tutor's professional skill, judgement and knowledge. This might include adding supportive comments such as, I'm sure this student will benefitted from your skill/expertise.

Assignments must be a Compulsory Component

Though assignments play a significant role in distance teaching—learning, many distance education institutions including the well established open universities have not yet recognised and assigned proper role for student assignments for submission.

The National Workshop on Academic Counselling in Distance Education recently organised by Dr. B. R. Ambedkar Open University, Andhra Pradesh, India, in collaboration with the Commenwealth of Learning suggested the following action for making students assignments as an effective instrument for distance teaching—learning, particularly keeping Indian Open Universities in mind:

  1. Every distance teaching university must necessarily have a component of assignments because only through the distance learners can progress in their studies. Assessment of assignments must count for final score of courses

  2. There should not be any place for adhocisism in planning and implementing assignments work.

  3. Economic factors should not be the criteria to neglect the assignments component.

  4. Delay in the preparation and despatch of assignments to students should be avoided. As far as possible they should be sent to students along with the first despatch of the course materials.

  5. It is desirable to have a assignments question bank to reduce delay in the preparation of assignments every semester or year. Question banks can be evolved at study centres and Regional Centres besides the university headquarters.

  6. Assignments should be accompanied by tutor guides or notes to guide tutors on the ways and methods of assessment of assignments.

  7. Evaluators of assignments must necessarily be oriented and reoriented on the methods of evaluation.

  8. Monitoring on assignment evaluation is essential. In the British Open University full time senior counsellors at Regional Centres and in IGNOU full time academic staff undertake monitor work. These models can be adopted by state open universities in India with necessary modifications.

  9. Coordinators of study centre should get deeply involved for ensuring proper assessment of assignments. They should check samples of evaluated assignments to provide feedback to the evaluators.

  10. Coordinators of study centres should insist on evaluators on the need to observe time schedules for returning evaluated assignments.

  11. Scope for appeal to the students against the marks and grades given by teachers must be provided.

  12. Manuals for evaluators should be available.

References

  1. IGNOU Handbook 4: Assessment of Assignment Responses. 1989. Division of Distance Education, Indira Gandhi National Open University.

  2. Thorpe, Mary. 1988. "Student Assignments." In Open Learning for Adults. ed. Mary Thorpe and David Grugen. London; Longman Group.

  3. Ganor, Margalit. 1988. "Assignment Construction in Distance Education." In Developing Distance Education, eds. David Sewart and John Daniel. Oslo: ICDE 14th World Conference Papers.

  4. Mackenzie, M. 1976. "Student Reaction to Tutor Comments on the TMA." Teaching at a Distance No. 5.

  5. Lewis, PL 1984. How to Tutor and Support Learners: Open Learning Guide 3. London: Council for Educational Technology.

  6. Beyth, Maron, Ellise, S and Ganor. 1988. "Tutor and Course Coordinator Hierarchical Relationships and Mutual perceptions." In Developing Distance Education, eds. David Sewart and John Daniel. Oslo: ICDE 14th World Conference Papers.

  7. Baath, J. A. 1980. Postal Two Way Communication in Correspondence Education. Lund: Gleerup.

  8. Race, Phil. 1989. The Open Learning Handbook 1: Selection Designing and Supporting Open Learning Materials. London: Kogan page.

  9. Lewis, Roger. 1987. The Open Learning Handbook 2: How to Help Learners Assess Their Progress. London: Council for Educational Technology.

  10. Ibid.

  11. Ibid.

  12. Race, Phil. 1989. The Open Learning Handbook 1: Selection Designing and Supporting Open Learning Materials. London: Kogan page.

  13. Ibid.

  14. Rowntree, Derek. 1989. Teaching through Self-Instructions: A Practical Handbook for Course Developers. London: Kogan page.

  15. Race, Phil. 1989. The Open Learning Handbook 1: Selection Designing and Supporting Open Learning Materials. London: Kogan page.

  16. Rekkedel, T. 1973. The Written Assignments in Correspondence Education: Effects of Reducing Turn Around Time—An Experimental Study. Oslo: NKI.

  17. Child, G. B. 1963. "Supervised Correspondence Education at USAFI." In Brandenburg Memorial Essay 1. Madison: University of Wisconsin.

  18. Holmberg, B. 1977. Distance Education: A Survey and Bibliography. London: Kogan Page.

  19. Thompson, D. and Castro, F. 1988. "Assignments Turn Around Time—Perceptions and Processes". In Developing Distance Education, eds. David Sewart and John Daniel. Oslo: ICDE 14th World Conference Papers.

  20. Rekkedel, T. 1983. "Research and Development Activities in the Field of Distance Study at NKI." In Distance Education: International Perspectives, eds. David Sewart, Desmond Keegan and Holmberg. London Croom Helme.

  21. Cole, S., Coats, M., and Lentell, H. 1986. "Towards Teaching by Correspondence," Open Learning No. 1.

  22. IGNOU Handbook 4: Assessment of Assignment Responses. 1989. Division of Distance Education, Indira Gandhi National Open University.

  23. Ibid.

  24. Satynarayana, P. 1990. Assignments: Nature, Role and Operation. Hyderabad: IGNOU Regional Centre.

  25. Handbook for Part-time Tutorial and Counselling Staff. 1986. UKOU.

  26. Cole, S., Coats, M., and Lentell, H. 1987. "Towards a New Emphasis in Monitoring." Open Learning. Vol. 2. (3).

  27. National Workshop on Academic Counselling in Distance Education 25 June - 3 July 1992: A Report. Hyderabad: Dr B. R. Ambedkar Open University.

Двухцветный замер. Как правильно ответить. - Viste el anillo? - настаивал обладатель жуткого голоса. Двухцветный утвердительно кивнул, убежденный, что честность - лучшая политика.

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