Thanks to a retweet by Derek Bruff last week, I came across a blog entry about "video grading". I have made screencasts before, as tutorials for PD sessions or as a resource for students when using a new technology in class for the first time. However, I never thought about the implications of using screencasts for grading.
I have one section of U.S. History I Honors (10 grade) students who maintain blogs via blogger. They publish all of their writing assignments on their blogs, and I post comments on their entry for feedback. But after reading through the tweeted blog entry about video grading, I had to give it a shot, and it couldn't have been any easier.
I already had Jing installed, and then created an account with screencast (the free account provides 2G of storage) to store my screencasts.
The steps are simple:
1. Run Jing - a little yellow sun will appear on the top of the screen
2. Choose your workspace to record
3. Begin recording and commenting on the student blog entry.
4. When the recording is done, click "share with screencast"
5. Login to your Screencast account and retrieve the URL for the video. I also suggest renaming the file with the student name and project.
6. Paste the URL into the comment section below the student blog entry and you are done. Now the student has authentic communication about their writing.
Extra Tip: In addition to talking about the paper, I like to leave notations so the student can see exactly what I am referring to in their work. To do this, I suggest using Screen Marker, a free download that allows you to make notations anywhere on your workspace. These notations are saved when working in Jing and become part of the screencast.
Here is an example of a screen cast of a student blog entry made with Jing. I can't begin to explain how easy it is to grade using this method. I haven't received student feedback yet, and I am interested to see what they think about this technique. I am especially interested to to find out if they are more likely to listen to a 1-2 minute discussion about their work, than to read through comments that teachers traditionally leave on pen and paper assignments. That might turn into an entirely different project!