Jarrod Kelly North Carolina Wesleyan College
Research spanning decades has shown that grading reduces student motivation and performance. In an effort to overcome the negative effects associated with grading, I have developed a novel method of student evaluation, which I call Reflected Progression Grading (RPG). The RPG approach incorporates motivational elements, inspired by popular games and gamification research, to encourage autonomous motivation and performance-approach goals among students in a general education course. This paper describes the RPG method in detail and presents the results of two studies examining the efficacy of this approach. The initial results are encouraging: the course failure rate was greatly reduced and students reported feeling greater perceived competence. In addition, large majorities of students reported feeling more autonomous and motivated. Likewise, most students expressed a preference for this type of grading over more traditional methods. Overall, this gamified approach seems to overcome many of the negative effects associated with traditional evaluation.
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