With final exams coming up, having access to updated grades online can be one of the most important resources for a student, said ASUI Sen. Rachael Miller.
Lindsey LaPrath, an ASUI representative on Faculty Senate, said she expects Faculty Senate to be receptive and willing to work with them when she presents ASUI”s resolution Tuesday, calling on University of Idaho instructors to post grades on Blackboard.
ASUI passed the resolution at its Nov. 18 meeting before break in response to results of a poll of students that closed Oct. 19.
Miller, who sponsored the original draft of the resolution, said she talked to two instructors – one for and one against the project – to get feedback before the poll.
Miller said they have already sent the resolution to UI college deans to let them know what students want and let the colleges choose whether and how to implement the resolution.
“The one against the project said if she heard significant feedback that she would be willing to,” Miller said. “I made the poll that day and sent it out the next.”
In the poll, 94 percent of the 540 students who responded said they would find it useful to have more of their grades posted on Blackboard.
“I think the poll really speaks for itself,” LaPrath said. “Students have made their opinions clear.”
She said she expects mixed responses, but that they will be able to come to some agreement with hesitant instructors.
ASUI Directory of Policy Nick Wren, who worked on the resolution, said many professors either do not have time to enter in grades or do not know how to enter them onto the site.
Miller said she and LaPrath wanted to find out how difficult it was and what resources were available for instructors to learn to use the system.
She said they attended a meeting to learn to use the system and that it was easy. She said all classes automatically have a page that instructors need only activate, and that they can easily input grades through Excel.
Miller said the Distance and Extended Education Office provides one-on-one, group and online trainings.
“I think as we walk them through the steps to show them how easy it is, teachers will become more open-minded,” LaPrath said.
She said they are not asking for teachers to teach using Blackboard, but just to post grades, so it should not affect how they teach.
“I have high hopes,” LaPrath said. “I think Faculty Senate really has students in mind and I think they will have students in mind when they review this resolution.”
Nishant Mohan can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @NishantRMohan