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Homework Graded by Students

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2017 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Columbus, Ohio

Publication Date

June 24, 2017

Start Date

June 24, 2017

End Date

June 28, 2017

Conference Session

Let’s Get Pumped: Innovative Approaches for Better Student Engagement

Tagged Division

Civil Engineering

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Paper Authors


Ashraf Badir P.E. Florida Gulf Coast University

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Dr. Badir is an Associate Professor in the Environmental and Civil Engineering Department at the U.A. Whitaker College of Engineering in Florida Gulf Coast University. He earned his B.Sc. (1982) in Civil Engineering and M.Sc. (1985) in Structural Engineering from Alexandria University, Egypt. He also holds a M.Sc. (1989) and a Ph.D. (1992) in Aerospace Engineering from Georgia Institute of Technology.

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Robert O'Neill P.E. Florida Gulf Coast University

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Dr. ROBERT (BOB) J. O’NEILL is Professor and Chair of the Department of Environmental and Civil Engineering, U.A. Whitaker College of Engineering, Florida Gulf Coast University. He received a B.S. from the United States Military Academy in 1975, an M.S. in Structural Engineering and an M.S. in Geotechnical Engineering from Stanford University in 1984 and a Ph.D. in Structural Engineering from Kansas State University in 1993. Prior to his coming to FGCU he was a Professor of Engineering at Roger Williams University and an Associate Professor and Director of the Civil Engineering Analysis Group at the United States Military Academy. Dr. O’ Neill is a retired Lieutenant Colonel, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. He has been active at the national level with ASCE’s Technical Council on Computing and Information Technology (TCCIT), Committee on Faculty Development (CFD) and Excellence in Civil Engineering Education (ExCEEd) initiative. Dr. O’Neill is a licensed Professional Engineer in California, Florida, Nevada and Virginia. He is a civil engineering program evaluator for the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET). He is an American Society of Civil Engineering Fellow (ASCE), a member of the American Society for Engineering Education (ASEE), and Phi Kappa Phi National Honor Society.

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One of the major time consuming tasks to a faculty is grading their course assignments, quizzes, projects and exams. Instructors at the university level resort to undergraduate senior and graduate students in performing some of these tasks. However, in senior level courses at relatively young universities with no graduate programs, it is not possible or rather impossible for the faculty to get assistance in grading students’ work.

In an attempt to resolve this challenge, without jeopardizing the integrity of the grading system, an experiment is being adopted in which students in a senior civil engineering reinforced concrete design course (currently taught in the fall semester 2016) are assigned the task to grade their own homework. Students scan and upload their work on CANVAS (learning management software) by the deadline, usually the starting time of the class. At the beginning of the class period the instructor displays on the screen the solution of each problem. Students grade their own work based on a pre-allotted credit by the instructor for each segment of the solution. The students are allowed to ask for clarifications regarding the solution and the grading scheme. The graded work is collected and the instructor may choose to quickly check, after the class period, the students’ grading while briefly comparing the submitted written work with the previously uploaded one.

It is likely that this grading scheme would enhance the overall students’ understanding of the material by (1) discovering their own mistakes and correcting them, (2) reducing the percentage of the students not turning in the assignment on time, (3) getting immediate feed-back in contrast to waiting for the assignment to be graded with the possibility of not even benefiting from the grader’s remarks, and (4) enticing all the students to raise questions regarding the homework solution.

This paper will provide an assessment of student performance on quizzes and exams compared to previous semesters where students’ self-grading was not used. A summary of students’ perceptions concerning self-grading and lessons learned will be provided. This study will be continued for an additional two semesters for an advanced concrete design course (spring 2017) and a senior steel design course (summer 2017) and the results will be reported in a follow-on paper in 2018.

Badir, A., & O'Neill, R. (2017, June), Homework Graded by Students Paper presented at 2017 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Columbus, Ohio. 10.18260/1-2--28440

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