To maintain some consistency across FYS, the task force recommends argument based and/or research based writing assignments totaling around 15 pages, and ideally no more than 20 pages (or the equivalent in alternative projects).
Each CORE 100 course will have a dedicated Library Liaison who can provide library research instruction and assist with the creation of assignments that incorporate research and information literacy skills. These skills should be used with at least one specific assignment, rather than a general skills overview. While the assignments are left to the discretion of the instructor, we strongly recommend the following:
The following resources can help instructors design assignments:
An assignment may include:
. If fifteen students isn't small enough, you can break down the class into small discussion groups. Here are suggestions on how. (Yandell and others)
. Each student can be responsible for taking minutes on the class discussion and report the minutes during the following class. (Brownlee)
can apply to class discussions, from Tina Fey's Bossypants (from O'Leary)
Model of Oxford Tutorial method (from Colella)
: Montaigne's library as a model for creating our spaces to read and reflect, from Sarah Bakewell's How to Live
, including peer review questions (McFarlane Harris)
Performances Tasks: In a performance task, student use multiple sources to craft an argument.Two examples:
In 2017-2018, FYS will conduct a program-wide assessment of Core 3a:
"Learning and Living Magis"--Marcus Mescher (Theology) wrote this piece about magis. He was inspired to write about Magis in part by his experience teaching FYS. Reading and discussing this can help promote a consideration of the greater good in the context of our Jesuit values.
FYS does not prescribe classroom policies on attendance, participation, etc. However, during the course of our workshops, faculty offered a number of suggestions.
Attendance policies can be used as a tool to acknowledge students' choices as adults and to help you communicate to them that you are concerned when they miss class.
Laptop and device policy (from O'Leary)
Exam period: Many (if not all) FYS courses will have a final project in lieu of a final exam. What to do during exam time?
College as a path to vocation
One way to consider vocation is to get students to think carefully about the purpose of pursuing higher education. Separating students from thinking solely about college as credentialing can help them consider all the ways to learn and grow while they are at Xavier. This conversation can be supported by attendance at Spark: the First-Year Seminar's Call to the Greater Good and a follow-up discussion. You might also consider these readings:
(from William Deresiewicz, Excellent Sheep)
"What is the Point of College?" (Kwame Anthony Appiah, New York Times 8 September 2015)
"The Tune-Up that Every First-Year College Student Needs" (Deborah J. Cohan, Psychology Today, 16 July 2017)
There are also a number of excellent readings that directly address vocation. Several of these are linked or attached below.
Let Your Life Speak: Listening for the Voice of Vocation (Parker J. Palmer)
A catalyst for conversation may be the question "Who are you now?" This question asks students to think about personal interests, skills and development, a broader conversation than a job search.
Recommended: Katharine Brooks, You Majored in What? Mapping your Path from Chaos to Career (New York: Viking, 2009). You might use a chapter from this book as an alternative for students who can't make it to Spark.
: One-minute assignments to assess student understanding (Angelo and Cross)
: Metacognitive assignments to help students reflect on their learning (Bowen)
(draft): If we use the building properly, it could use as little energy as a building with no HVAC. Ideas here on how to engage with and take ownership of Alter.