How do you mark an essay effectively?


Marking is the least favorite part of teaching for any professor. There are various manuals available on the mechanics of giving grades, but not about how to make it easier. Suggestions to have a lesser amount of assignments or offering less feedback do not practically work. However, there certainly are ways to make the process faster and more efficient. Here we have several tips to solve the problems instructors can face while grading papers.

1. Avoid Repeating Yourself
Most often students make the same mistakes repeatedly.  This particularly happens in the case of bibliographies and footnotes. These elements of an assignment usually have many small mistakes. Do not spend your entire time correcting each one of them. Point it out once with a brief comment explaining what is wrong. If you find it again then just underline or circle it and refer to the previous comment.

If the mistake appears in a systematic pattern, then mention that also in a separate comment. Tell the student that you have corrected these mistakes a few times to give them the proper idea. It is not the job of the professor to correct every single mistake throughout the assignment. Your responsibility is to identify the issue and the student needs to grasp the initiative. The same applies to spelling and grammar mistakes.

2.Have Faith
A teacher can often go through an Imposter Syndrome when marking essays. This is the belief that you have managed to fool your students into thinking you are competent and knowledgeable. Don’t let doubts like these, plague yourself.

Once you have finished checking a paper you might start thinking if you really have graded it appropriately. Doubts might also rise about other professors reviewing and judging your work and find it lacking. Thoughts like these must be resisted.

Assure yourself that you have earned the position you are on. Second-guessing your thoughts is not an option. You have the authentic expertise and judgement to evaluate those essays. Assign a grade, make comments and move forward. Keep the faith that you have done your best.

3.Bibliographic Bank
Usually, you will be receiving several papers on a particular topic. If you have been marking the same sort of papers you will realize that you will need to recommend identical reference material. To keep in mind all the sources you want to suggest, create a Word document. List out the topics of study and the important sources for each one. This way you won’t have to research for the material every time.

This also proves to be useful if you want to check if your students have selected the correct sources. Or if they have missed on any important references. Hence, tt can altogether be a great tool serving multiple purposes.

4.Comment Bank
The process of grading might get monotonous enough at times and you will find yourself repeating comments. To avoid the hassle of remembering what you previously said, create a document of comments you use the most. This is referred to as a Teaching Toolbox or a Comment Bank. Save your comments and read through them. Then copy and paste the most common ones into another document. This will save you a lot of time and from getting immeasurably frustrated.

5.Grading Conversion Charts
Most college papers require three different types of grade. A letter, a percentage and a numeric grade. They each have varying purposes, but you will need to convert between them. Even if you have been teaching for a long time, this conversion can be tough to do mentally. The problem can be solved by placing all your grades on an Excel Spreadsheet. It is quite easy to do and will help you tackle any confusing parts.

6.Check in Batches
Having a stack of 100 assignments to check will surely seem insurmountable. Therefore, break them into groups that can be managed, like three or five essays at a time. According to the length of the essays, it can lead to an hour and a half of grading.

Grade the essays, type in the comments, place the grades onto the marksheet and take a break of at least forty-five minutes. This a method of the SMART goal system. It makes grading feel more achievable while ensuring you can relax in between. Make sure to set aside the papers you have already checked.

These were some basic tips to make the process of marking papers more effective. The hassle of grading loads of assignments can be understandable. Reach out to our reliable essay marking services to help you with any grading issues. We will assist you to mark essays online in the most convenient and comprehensive ways possible. Our service is affordable and will never disappoint you.

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