Global Innovation Awards 2016: Winner

Category: Student Engagement | Asia

Alex Banks

Alex Banks

English Instructor: Handong Global University, South Korea

“Of course they must learn to express themselves clearly in their assignments and written research and articles, but the end goal is for the students to be able to competently write and speak in a global context once they have graduated.”

Alex utilises Turnitin in his English as a Second Language acquisition courses at the Handong Global University in Pohang, South Korea, where his department's focus is on teaching academic English in a university context. However, this goes beyond merely preparing the students to be able to use English at the university:

“Of course they must learn to express themselves clearly in their assignments and written research and articles, but the end goal is for the students to be able to competently write and speak in a global context once they have graduated."

In his classes his students are eager to receive feedback on their writing assignments, particularly at the first drafting stage, so that they can focus on improving at each stage of the writing process. Alex and his colleagues find that Turnitin supports this feedback process with QuickMarks for commenting and rubrics for scoring. The seamless integration of these two features allows them to focus on giving the students the feedback they really need. He can turn his attention to structure, organization and the proper use of language. The instantaneous and comprehensive Similarity Report streamlines and enhances the identification of potential plagiarism. On top of that, Turnitin allows Handong to support its students in their development of personal integrity and their growth of Christian character, two qualities at the core of Handong’s mission.

He and his colleagues in the English department also make use of the tool’s Peer Review feature:

“As the students review others’ work, it helps them to think about their own writing and, in conjunction with the feedback they receive from the instructor, start to process how they can improve.”

Alex can see the students applying the feedback they’ve been given and the skills they’ve learned all throughout the course, from the from the first essay to their final test, with very good results. The ability for students to give feedback to each other anonymously is a very important feature, particularly in a Korean context. The anonymous feedback allows students to critically analyze their peers’ work more freely, without endangering important relationships

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