Grading

Almost two weeks since the last post here. In my defence, I have been travelling. I went to Bergen to do some interviews, and am now going to start transcribing some of them. I’m sure it’ll be fun writing out all the ridiculous things you say when in conversation with even the sharpest mind. I’ll get back to that. I’ve also been working on the draft for my next installation in my post series on academic publishing, but it’s turning out to be another exercise in long-windedness. I’ll take this longish break as an incitement to do two things:

1. Vary the posts a little, so I don’t produce one 1000-word post every other week, but instead parse my thoughts a little.
2. Build up a post buffer that it’s easy to set to auto-publish at set times, or at least to pop in and update.

Let’s see how long we manage that, eh?

For now, let me talk about grading. I’ve finished reading through my first ever batch of student papers to grade (or rather, pass or fail), and it’s been a mixed experience. I’m not going to go into detail on the quality of the papers, but suffice it to say that there is a significant distance between your writing skills as a student fresh out of high school and after a few years of practice writing academic texts. It was a surprisingly emotional experience, ranging from utter despair on behalf of the human race (as demonstrated in this PhD comic) to very upbeat discoveries (hey, this one’s pretty good! There’s hope after all!). I actually enjoyed it, and will not decline next time someone asks me to help out.

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