It is mid-semester break, that is: it a break for students and rather a surge of work for lecturers! Within one short week, all manuscripts have to be graded! So how do I do it?
1. Prepare, Prepare, Prepare
A well thought-out exam with carefully crafted questions and instructions makes for an easier read. Times 50, 60 or 130.
2. Time your progress
If you have three working days, 6 hours effective time each day – that is 18 hours. Divide that in the number of papers you have to grade and try to meet the target.
3. Bribe yourself
Coffee works for me. The occasional dinner with a friend if I have done my pensum.
4. Take stats
How many of your students started with question 3? How many failed question 5? Misspelled a keyword? Forget to paragraph answers? Take note and create statistics that you can share with the students for a better understanding of their understanding of the course.
5. Remember the individual
I find this makes the reading more interesting. Is this particular student “getting it”? Is this answer “alternative” rather than “wrong”?
Oh, now off to dinner!