Faculty-led Inquiry into Reflective and Scholarly Teaching (FIRST)


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Course portfolio developed as part of the UNL Peer Review of Teaching Project (peerreview.unl.edu)

Copyright (c) 2017 Kelly Stage


This portfolio documents the teaching objectives, strategies, and assessments for a capstone course in the English major at UNL. As the English Studies Capstone and as an ACE (Achievement-Centered Education) 10 course at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, English 487 must help students meet key outcomes for the department and the University, but it also allows flexibility and creativity in the methods chosen to meet these requirements and structure the course. This portfolio thereby reflects on the intellectual labor of designing a particular version of these requirements and on guiding students through the design. The assessments included here are measuring traditional objectives for an English literature seminar while also including less easily assessed work: reflection and intellectual labor by our students. In many ways, this portfolio represents a level of meta-process: the instructor here reflects on her objectives and work, which are deeply connected to tracking students’ reflection on, and understanding of, their own learning. At the same time, I needed to study their new work analyzing texts, writing creatively and critically, and organizing information. Productively bringing a final, major project and a reflective portfolio together is the crux of the English 487 course. Here I document the methods I used attempting to fulfill the course’s mission and what I learned about my course design by studying that process.