When it comes to ways of assessing student learning, we in higher education typically fall into a couple of tried-and-true, boring and inefficient ways methods. We tend to gravitate to the old standbys: tests, quizzes, and the occasional written assignment. But we try not to use too many of those written assignments because, heaven forbid, they do not self-grade in the LMS.

Check out the Periodic Table of Storytelling.

Periodic Table of Storytelling

Periodic Table of Storytelling
You can get this for your use. Click on the image to go to the website to order.

Harkening back to the dreaded periodic table of elements from chemistry class, this is a new spin on storytelling. One of my colleagues at Colby Community College, Dr. Michael Thompson, uses storytelling in his classes and has found it to be an effective way of determining a student’s acquisition of knowledge. When I viewed the table, I chose the Rad – Getting things past the radar element as it appealed to my penchant for trying to get things past the radar, or at least fly under it.

So, next time you are trying to assess student learning, have your student select one of the elements from the chart and write a short story about the content they are being assessed upon. Although it’s true that it will not self grade, you might be pleasantly surprised by the stories your students tell!


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