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Differentiation - optional assignments/discussions

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I often want to differentiate with content. I let students choose out of, say 5 assignments/discussions topics.

As far as I know schoology doesn't have a functionality that would show that assignments/discussion topics are optional. This has a couple of negative implications:

  • it is confusing for students: they see the due dates approaching for all the assignments/discussions even when they have already submitted their work to the the chosen item.
  • this generates long grades reports with a lot of non-applicable information in it
  • it generates false information on the workload planning page (it looks as if students need to complete, say 7 assignments, when in fact they only need to do one.

Differentation is a rising trend in education, and for good reasons too. It would be great if Schoology could develop tools that allow teachers to do that with clarity. "Individually assign" and "excuse" options are a step to the right direction but they cannot handle optional assignments (i.e. choose from alternatives) efficiently.

Johan Autio
Teacher of Philosophy
United Nations International School
24-50 FDR Drive
New York, NY, 10010

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    Megan Minturn

    Hello, I teach at the Brooklyn International High School where many teachers also use differentiation and layered curriculum to provide student choice. We would be interested in more flexibility in this area, as well!

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