Final Reflection

The first way one can begin assigning a grade is to examine the expectations set forth at the beginning of the year, examine what was actually accomplished, and compare the two.  As such I’ll begin by running through the syllabus requirements to see whether or not I fulfilled them.

The big project (further outlined in this post) accounts for 35% of our grade, the written components of which included the proposal, progress report 1, progress report 2, progress report 3, and my big project evaluation.  I believe this may have been the most successful part of the class for me.  I personally felt that I learned important skills that can enhance my professional development.  My video was a sort of mocumentary covering a behind-the-scenes look at the DKC.  To create this piece, I had to utilize a multitude of technologies/software.  I shot my footage with a T5i camera, and collected audio using a rode mic.  This was a great experience, as I have a lot of experience with video-editing, but generally use footage from pre-existing footage.  In this case, I got to create my own footage, getting an eye for different shots, etc.  I then edited this footage using Adobe Premiere.  This is especially relevant to me because I’ll be doing an internship in the spring that utilizes this program, and the more experience I have the better.  A mentor I talked with earlier in the year also suggested I learn more advanced pieces of video-editing software such as Adobe Premiere.  Essentially I learned a lot over the course of this project (improving my video-editing, audio-editing, and shooting skills), while also creating what I believe to be a quality product.  I therefore believe I earned an A on this component.

Teaching accounts for 40% of our overall grade.  This process helped keep us accountable with our work, while also allowing us to solidify what we’ve learned by teaching others (one of the best ways to learn).  I successfully conducted each of my teaching days, which included: Peripheral 1, Peripheral 2 and 3, Python 1, Python 2, Python 3, and Teaching My Project.  It looks like my students gave me an average of 4.5 stars out of 5.  I believe I generally rated myself as a 4 out of 5.  We discussed in class that we generally rated ourselves a bit harder than our peers, so I should probably place more weight on the word of those that underwent the learning, rather than the ideal I had in my head.  I therefore believe I earned an A- on this component.

The Programming Manifesto counts for 10% of our overall grade.  I completed both the original manifesto and the revised manifesto.  This was  a good way to guide ourselves during the programming section with clear goals while also getting us to critically reflect on what coding actually is.  I believe I earned an A by successfully completing  this component.

The Learning Journal accounts for 7.5 % of our overall grade.  I was pretty consistent with documenting the class on a nearly weekly basis.  It looks like there were a few weeks where I had not posted, but these were balanced by weeks where I published multiple posts (for example, I might write a post Sunday reflecting on the past week, but not get to the next week’s summary until Monday, and then cover the next week’s on Sunday again to get back on track).  This was a good way to get us to reflect on our learning progress and think about the class each week.  It looks like I posted approximately 25 posts as part of my learning journal (including other written assignments in addition to the class updates), which seems like a fair reflection of a 16 week semester.  I therefore believe I earned an A on this component.

Participation accounts for 7.5% of our overall grade.  I think I did a fair job assisting in class discussions, being a good listener for the student teachers, and providing feedback as we developed our projects.  I tried to fill out the various surveys and evaluations we were asked to conduct, in addition to the group exercises.  As far as I recall, I also never missed a class.  I therefore believe I earned an A on this component.

Based purely on the syllabus I therefore believe I have earned an A in the class, as I believe about 60% of my work fell within this range while 40% fell in an A- range.

I also believe an alternative evaluation of actual knowledge/learning over the course of the three class segments will result in the same assessment.  The first third of the class was devoted to the Peripheral.  In this segment we discussed the cultural aspects of digital studies and sci-fi.  We worked together to analyze the book and make connections to other pieces of media.  I was pretty involved in this segment (which is documented in my Learning Journal), and successfully finished the book.  For this section of the class I believe I earned an A.

The second third of the class was devoted to programming, specifically learning Python.  This was a challenging section that I believe was designed to give us a better appreciation for the logic and culture of code in addition to pushing us outside of our comfort zone.  I particularly enjoyed discussing public perceptions of coding through media and the potential limitations of coding.  I certainly have a much better understanding of Python syntax, and if I really had to I could probably accomplish a simple task using the logic and resources I now know.  Nevertheless I didn’t push myself quite as far as I had hoped (I only made it to text-editing and some basic image-editing teaching sessions) in this section.  I therefore believe I earned an A- for this portion of the class.

The last third of the class was devoted to our big project, much of which I discussed earlier.  I dedicated a good deal of effort to work while working on my project, while also producing a quality product during my learning process.  Therefore, for this portion of the class, I believe I earned an A.

In this manner, whether by evaluating purely by the syllabus or by examining completion and knowledge accumulated during the three class segments, I believe I earned an A.

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