CTLT

Center for Teaching, Learning & Technology

Assignment Checklist

Assignment Design & Sequence Checklist

This checklist is adapted from Elements of Teaching Writing and George Mason University’s Writing Across the Curriculum program.

RHETORICAL CLARITY

Can the student given this assignment answer these questions:

___ What am I, the author, writing about?

___ For whom?

___ For what purpose?

___ In what form?

THE TASK

___ Can the assignment be summarized in one or two key sentences? Are the intellectual tasks/operations clearly denoted (e.g., compare/contrast; define; analyze cause and effect, etc.)?

___ Do I provide specific guidelines and due dates to help students perform to my expectations?

___ Are there useful strategies and helpful resources I might suggest?

AUDIENCE

___ If students are writing primarily for me, do they know my expectations and values?

___Would it be helpful to expand the audience beyond myself? To peers, for example?

___ Would imaginary or hypothetical conditions improve the task?

ASSIGNMENT SEQUENCES AND TIMING

___ Does the assignment relate to what comes before and after in the course?

___ Am I asking students to explore the subject matter in increasingly complex ways?

___ Is there a step-by-step development of skills?

___ Do I give students enough time to read, research, draft, write, and rewrite?

___ Will students be given class time for peer review and editing?

GRADING

___ Do I communicate what constitutes a successful response to this assignment (e.g. show them a model paper, use criteria for grading, give a rubric for “A,” “B,” “C,” failing grades)?

___ Do I provide students a chance to evaluate themselves or one another?

___ Have I considered if students will be allowed to revise?

Useful Sources:

Gottschalk, Katherine and Keith Hjortshoj. The Elements of Teaching Writing: A   Resource for Instructors in all Disciplines. New York: Bedford/ St. Martin’s, 2003.

"George Mason University." Writing Across the Curriculum. N.p., n.d. Web.

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