Students need to understand what is being asked of them when tackling an essay assignment.
Some students misjudge or don't understand what is being asked of them when they write for a specific essay assignment.
I created a short 10 point assignment in which students preview the upcoming essay assignment. Students respond to specific questions that allow me to quickly address errors in their perception of what they're being asked to do, and correct those perceptions as well as answer any specific questions they might have about the assignment.
For all the major writing assignments in ENG101 (SUM2018) students will complete the Preview Assignment.
Results from the three ENG101 classes from SUM2018 are positive. I've been able to clarify and realign students about specific writing assignments they are tacking and set them up for success. Going forward, I will add Preview Assignments to all my classes in F2019 and create a course survey to find out student perception of the assignments and how helpful they found the tool.
Helping students find success is the goal of teaching. By adding a short preview assignment allowing students to focus on upcoming larger essay assignments in Canvas, they learn the importance of taking the time to review assignment instructions before starting in, they think about what they're being asked to do, what challenges they might face while working on the asisgnment, what resources they can access for help, and ask specific questions of their instructor. Instructors can immediately respond and clarify or realign student preceptions setting students up for success.