Diving into the Art of the Assignment/Critique and Assessment


We were so thrilled to see all the generative connections between your own practices and the classes you are developing! There are so many great learning opportunities for your future students ahead through sharing and exploring your own expertise and knowledge around content, process and art production, and through creating open opportunities for you to grow through teaching.

We really look forward to see how you continue to develop your ideas in the next two weeks. To that end there were lots of connections and resources you shared with each other during our assignment review. Make sure to use each other as a learning community in the next two weeks. Talk to each other about your ideas and how you are flushing them out or knots that you hit. Ann and I are also available via email but you have already started to build a really great community of practice together in our class – make sure to find a way to keep the dialogue flowing over the next two weeks!

We also talked about both formal and informal assessment strategies. Remember that ongoing assessment strategies are KEY! In the dropbox you will find lots of possibilities for you to think through this. Here are two links to some places to find routines for thinking and reflection – some of these are in the dropbox as pdf’s.

Any of these – even the simple ones can be scaffolded for whatever age group you are working with. There are also two articles from books on Critique in the dropbox along with CCA new faculty doc on critique and reflection. And if you have not done so yet, it might be interesting for you to attend some of the open critique forums at CCA: Open Critique Series.

Some images of your course development maps – keep concept mapping your ideas to make those important connections!AssigmentMaps

Remember as you move forward keep these four question in the forefront of your thinking to use as check-points in your curriculum development:

  • How are your course assignments addressing your main understanding goals?
  • Are you considering possible socio/cultural or pop-culture dimensions in your course assignments?
  • What critical thinking opportunities are you encouraging?
  • How are you checking for student understanding (ongoing assessment pieces)?

HOMEWORK – REMINDER – we will resume class on Friday April 11th (No class on the 4th)

1.  Interview faculty member – Continue your observations and make a date to interview your faculty member. Make sure to look closely in the coming weeks for both informal and formal ongoing assessment strategies and bring your ideas to our next class along with your interview notes.

2.  Readings (in dropbox): Beverly Nadius, Arts for Change, Chapter 3, How an Art Practice Morphs into an Arts Pedagogy; Chapter 4, Facilitating an Interdisciplinary Arts Curriculum, AND from Sarah Thornton, 7 Days in the Art World, Chapter 2, The Crit.

3. Dropbox docs: There are several reflection and critical thinking routines along with some articles on critiques in the dropbox under the Assignment in “5) Class Six, March 21st” and in “Final Projects, Syllabus and Lesson Plan templates” find the docs for your final project assignment including the lesson plan template (required) and the CCA Syllabus template and tips (a suggestion but you can design your own format as well).

4.  Prepare for Community Arts Roundtable:  Review websites of guests and think of questions you want to ask—make notes in journal.

5.  On-going Curriculum Development – continue thinking about and make notes in your journal on the following:

  1. Assignments – draft ideas for the beginning, middle and end of your course and include strategies for assessing understanding in relation to the assignment and understanding goals
  2. Artist Exemplars – Think about artists whose work connects to the work of the class that you would like to use as an example—be sure to think about issues of diversity and difference when selecting examples. Talk about how important it is and what are the holdbacks etc. about doing this generatively!
  3. In order to hone in the language of your course description – log into the webadvis0r and look at 3 or so course descriptions in your subject area and see how they are written. How are other faculty selling their classes to the student body?



About tnoval

Faculty at California College of the Arts
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