Activities, assignments and assessment/Student-generated-textbook

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Psychology student-generated-book. James Neil. Copy on Youtube.
James Neil explaining the project at its beginning (2010). Copy on Youtube.

James Neill's presentation for AAAOpenConf2013.

Key points[edit | edit source]

  • Formal textbook was inadequate and expensive
  • Essay assignment changed to book chapter
  • Assessment was formative and included peers

Notes[edit | edit source]

James has used collaborative writing by students to generate a textbook on Motivation and Emotion - third year final semester unit. Each student produces a chapter as well as a multi media presentation of that chapter.

It provides an Assessment and learning exercise with additional social skills attainment.

Time input for students - 100 authors 50 hours to produce essays - capture social potential and value of this effort, and at the same time address generic skills.

Subsequent change in focus from replacing textbook - diverse topics made it hard to produce coherent textbook. Focus is now on writing for a lay audience with useful information, based in Wikiversity; licensing Creative Commons; Academic Integrity - they need to be primary author and original work, ways to collaborate and give feedback; word length introduced but not required component of marking; use of hypertext wikilinks - makes it rich text with links to external resources; referencing to peer reviewed articles; features to lift off the page and engage the reader; feedback and peer review part of book.

Marking criteria detailed: Theory 30% Research 30% Written Expression 30% Social Contribution through collaborative space 10%.

Multi media task - 5 min - post on web and linked to chapter. Communicate key ideas the aim.

Student feedback

Most students liked choice, using new medium, relevance to real life.

Some students did not like focus on wikiversity, social media; did not like challenge of learning content and medium at same time - but these tools get easier to use and more accessible all the time.


Q: Has the book been printed from the wiki?
J: Did not get around to it as editing not finished - students still go back and edit. Does not see need for paper based, may do selection.

See also[edit | edit source]