Samples by topic:
- Ethics of loyalty to family versus government, stemming from Antigone (GBK 101, Achim Kopp)
- Policy paper on sex and gender separation in the Olympics (INT 101, Katie Northcutt)
- Media content analysis on gender (INT 101, Bill Jenkins)
- Ethical issues of humanity, as presented in Shelley's Frankenstein (INT 101, Jonathan Glance)
- Ethics of eating animals for food (INT 101, Andy Digh)
- Analysis and responses to problems in American education system (INT 101, Bridget Trogden)
- Emerging technology recommendation report (TCO 141, common assignment)
- Ethical responses to encountering "the other" (INT 101, Deneen Senasi)
- Seeking utopia through Koinonia Farm (INT 101, Janell Johnson)
- Issues of medical ethics (INT 101, Marc Jolley and INT 101, Lindsey Sams - Part 1, Part 2)
- Research project around mental health, environmental protection, and child welfare from The Catcher in the Rye (INT 101, Diane Smith)
- Climate change (INT 101, Craig Coleman)
- Value of and support for the arts (INT 101, Tony Kemp)
- Race relations, racial disparities, and racial injustice (INT 101, Matt Harper and INT 101, Cynthia Robertson)
- Proposed legislation to solve the struggles seen in The Odyssey (GBK 101, Derek Glasgow)
- Connections to modern political struggles (GBK 101, Barry Stephenson and GBK 101, Sarah Gardner & Charlie Thomas)
In general, high-impact assignments
- explicitly ask the students to address the three Expose student learning outcomes and connected the three outcomes with the assignment.
- pull back the curtain and let students know that this assignment connects directly with Research that Reaches Out initiatives.
Faculty should feel free to adopt, adapt, or contact your colleagues about any of the assignments found above.
What is a signature assignment?
A signature assignment is one assignment developed intentionally to highlight and encourage student knowledge and competencies. The use of signature assignments has emerged in the past few years:
- as a mechanism for demonstration of skill on behalf of the student
- for the creation of intellectually engaging assignments by the faculty and for sharing those assignments that lead to impactful learning
- for facilitating meaningful consistency of common general education standards within institutions
How do signature assignments connect to Research that Reaches Out?
The signature assignments for the Expose level of Research that Reaches Out are implemented in the foundational general education core courses taken by all first-year students. These core courses are:
- INT 101: Understanding Self and Others
- GBK 101: Understanding Self and Others: Among Gods & Heroes
- TCO 141: Introduction to Professional Communication
The Expose-level signature assignment directs students to address the following in an assignment (one single assignment or a set of scaffolded or connected assignments):
- Critically analyze multiple perspectives or theories about a relevant issue/problem faced by a local, national, or global community.
- Propose solutions to a local, national, or global issue/problem using academic knowledge and scholarship.
- Articulate ethical reasoning in considering a local, national, or global issue/problem.
The Faculty & Staff Guide for those working with traditional Macon undergraduate students contains more information on the student learning outcomes and what they mean.
If I teach one of the courses, what should I do?
Part of the purpose of signature assignments is that faculty can design or adapt assignments that fit with the content and pedagogy of the course. However, no one has to do this alone! The QEP Office will facilitate faculty development events each year and will share examples. Participation in development events and workgroups is important.
How will the signature assignments be used for assessment?
In each of the QEP implementation years (fall 2015-spring 2020), a random sample of students will be selected for assessment. The course instructor will be asked to provide the signature assignment instructions and the work submitted on the signature assignment by each of the randomly-selected students.
The student work will be assessed by rubric to see how students perform on QEP student learning outcomes (SLOs) 1-3 (critically analyze, propose solutions, articulate ethical reasoning). The data will be analyzed in aggregate, and faculty will yearly have a chance to look at and analyze the data in order to better guide student learning.
The rubric links are available on the Assessment link. The goal for the student sample at the Expose level is to perform at an average of "2."
Ferren, A., & Paris, D. (2013). How students, faculty, and institutions can fulfill the promise of capstones.Peer Review, 15. Retrieved from https://www.aacu.org/peerreview/2013/fall/paris-ferren
Rhodes, T. & Finley, A. (2013).Using the VALUE Rubrics for Improvement of Learning and Authentic Assessment.Washington, D.C.: Association of American Colleges and Universities.