Author Archives: Michael Neal

About Michael Neal

Associate Professor of English Florida State University Rhetoric and Composition

Digital Writing Assessment and Evaluation

Since this book didn’t come out until after class started, I didn’t get a chance to include it in the syllabus, though it’s clearly the perfect focus for our class. So on this, our last day of content this semester, I want us to spend some time seeing what we missed. Each of us will skim a chapter in class and post a “comment” that responds to the following questions:

1. On what content does this chapter build to frame or situate the ideas?

2. What concepts, works, or authors does the chapter affirm?

3. What concepts, works, or authors does the chapter challenge?

4. Is there anything particularly unique or interesting about the approach in this chapter?


Posted by on November 26, 2013 in Uncategorized


2011 NAEP Writing Results

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Posted by on November 19, 2013 in Uncategorized


2013 NSSE Results

Here is the 2013 National Survey on Student Engagement report:

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Posted by on November 19, 2013 in Uncategorized


Common Core Report

Here’s an interesting report on the Common Core Standards:

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Posted by on November 18, 2013 in Uncategorized


Professionals Against Machine Scoring Of Student Essays In High-Stakes Assessment

Below is a link to a concise argument against AES and petition signed by over 4000 in the field. You may or may not want to participate. We’ll talk today about blanket statements against AES and how the debate is being framed.

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Posted by on November 12, 2013 in Uncategorized


The AES Dilemma

So we finally made it the “hot button” topic in technology and assessment: Automated Essay Scoring (or AES). I’ll start class with a short rant today, but not about AES directly. I want to focus instead on our disciplinary complicity in where we are now and how I don’t think it’s helpful to perpetuate the good humans vs. the bad machines narrative. After that, though, I’d like you to respond to the following set of questions with the articles/chapters you read for today.

  • Subject line: Author’s name and title of the chapter/article (separate entry for each)
  • Rank: On a scale of 1-10 (1 being completely opposed and 10 completely advocating), where does this author fall on AES? Give us one sentence explaining how you know that.
  • Argument: what evidence or logic does the author use to support his/her/their position? (label, 2-3 sentences at most)
  • Assumptions: what stated or unstated assumptions underlie the argument at work in this chapter/article? (label, bullet, no need for complete sentences)
  • Points of Interest: what are 3-4 pieces of information you found interesting regarding AES? (label, bullet, paraphrase, and page numbers for citations)



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Posted by on November 12, 2013 in Uncategorized


Carleton College Portfolio Assessment

To give us a concrete portfolio assessment example, I’d like you to look briefly at the Carleton College example, which has been around for over a decade. It’s a mid-career print portfolio. We’ll talk about it more in class.

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Posted by on October 31, 2013 in Uncategorized