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"Evaluating Sermons: The Function of Grades in Teaching Preaching"

Helsel, Carolyn Browning
Teaching Theology and Religion 20, no. 3 (2017): 204-215
BL41.T4 v.20 no. 3
Topics: Teaching Religion   |   Theological Education   |   Assessing Students

Additional Info:
What are grades doing in a homiletics classroom? This article traces the function of grades through the broader history of the educational system in the United States and then makes suggestions for how grades can be used more effectively in teaching preaching. Beginning in the nineteenth century, teachers used grades to rank and motivate students, as well as communicate across institutions. With the more recent assessment movement, educators have conceptualized grading as the larger process of evaluating the success of learning objectives. The commission on accreditation for the Association of Theological Schools does not view grades as part of its assessment, but it evaluates theological schools on whether they achieve intended learning outcomes. Theological educators need to be able to evaluate whether their teaching fulfills their schools' mission and learning objectives. For homiletics, the author measures learning through pre- and post-preaching feedback and incorporates professor- and student-crafted rubrics.
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