Assignment 5: Proposing Your Work (Summer 2017)

Due: Sunday, June 4th, 2017, by 11:59PM UTC-12 (Anywhere on Earth).

Assignment Instructions

The first four weeks of this semester are a time to explore the area of educational technology in which you are most interested. Last week, you described a general problem in your chosen area of educational technology, like providing more rapid feedback in essay-writing, engaging students more authentically in physics, or predicting success in a college-level class. This week, you’ll start to explore what you want to do to contribute to the community.

By now, you’ve spent almost 30 hours researching educational technology. You’ve explored a general area and a more narrow problem or phenomenon. This week, it’s time to propose what you’re going to do. You don’t have to have all the details worked out just yet — that’s what the full proposal is for — but for this miniature proposal, you want to describe at a very high level what you want to do for your project. Select the development track, the research track, or the content track. What is the development problem, research phenomenon, or content knowledge that you are going to address, and how are you going to address it? Most importantly, how will your project connect to and contribute to the community surrounding your problem or phenomenon?

Because we’re on a compressed summer schedule, your mini-proposal should also lay out around 20 hours of work that you’ll do before the full proposal is due in two weeks. This can be foundational work that does not impact the overall scope or structure of the project; for example, if you’re doing survey research, you know you’ll want to write and beta test the survey. If you’re working on a development project, you know you’ll need to build some boilerplate or integrations with other tools. If you’re working on content, you know you’ll need a content outline and lesson plan. So, include in your mini-proposal some early work that you’ll do over the next two weeks until the full proposal is due.

Your writing on this assignment can be somewhat informal and reflective because completing the assignment is meant to primarily be a learning activity for you; however, to adequately complete this assignment, you will definitely want to be able to cite specific sources, whether they be competing products or existing papers on similar ideas.

The main goal of this assignment is for you to start to define what you will contribute to the community. The secondary goals are for you to be able to find classmates with similar projects in mind, to provide your mentor and classmates with the information necessary to help you find more material, and to have you learned to drive your own research into a topic.

Your assignment should be approximately 500 words long. This is neither a minimum nor a maximum, but rather a heuristic to simply describe the level of depth we would like to see. Feel free to write more, or if you believe you can complete the assignment in fewer words, feel free to write less.

Submission Instructions

Assignments should be submitted to the corresponding assignment on T-Square in accordance with the Assignment Submission Instructions. Most importantly, you should submit a single PDF for each assignment. This PDF will be ported over to Peer Feedback for peer review by your classmates. If your assignment involves things (like videos, working software prototypes, etc.) that cannot be provided in PDF, you should provide them separately (either through the class Resources folder or your own upload destination) and submit a PDF that describes how to access the assignment.

This is an individual assignment. Even if you already plan to work on a team for the project, this assignment should be completed individually. You must choose either the development or research track at this stage.

Late work is not accepted without advanced agreement except in cases of medical or family emergencies. In the case of an emergency, please contact the Dean of Students.

Grading Information

As with all assignments in this class, each milestone will be graded on a traditional A-F scale based on the extent to which your deliverable met expectations. If your deliverable receives below an A, you may revise and resubmit it once within two weeks of the original due date or one week of receiving a grade, whichever is later. Note that this should not be treated as a de facto free pass to submit sorely lacking work initially; we reserve the right to deny resubmission or grade a resubmission more harshly if we perceive the original submission was lacking in earnest effort. Due to T-Square restrictions, your grade will be provided on a 5-point scale: a ‘5’ is an A, a ‘4’ is a B, a ‘3’ is a C, a ‘2’ is a D, a ‘1’ is an F, and a ‘0’ is a failure-to-submit.

Peer Review

After submission, your assignment will be ported to Peer Feedback for review by your mentor and classmates. Grading is not the primary function of this peer review process; the primary function is simply to give you the opportunity to read and comment on your classmates’ ideas. All grades will come from the graders alone.

You will typically be assigned four classmates to review. You receive 1.5 participation points for completing a peer review by the end of the day Thursday; 1.0 for completing a peer review by the end of the day Sunday; and 0.5 for completing it after Sunday but before the end of the semester. For more details, see the participation policy.