art history, writing assignments, scaffolding
As a result of my participation in WWU’s Backward by Design retreat in 2017, I sought to modify the written assignments of my introductory Art History course for pre-majors in order to better prepare students working towards a lengthy research paper. In course evaluations and anecdotally, students reported being intimidated by the size and scope of the final paper, and asked for more writing practice. I decided that instead of requiring a high stakes research paper as the culmination of the coursework, I would scaffold assignments throughout the course that would eventually lead students to composing a thesis around which they could curate a virtual exhibition. This study discusses how I modified the assignments in the course, and measures the positive results in terms of improved student performance and course evaluations, comparative to the course before revision.
Kerman, Monique, "Scaffolding Writing Assignments in Introductory Art History" (2018). Backward by Design Mini-Studies. 23.
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