Friday, February 8, 2019

DR C's Academic Online Cruise: Week Three—Moving Forward Through Rough Waters

To read the initial post about DR C's Academic Online Cruise, go HERE.


Day One 

I collected the Definition themes. I must say this assignment was satisfying to read. Each paper gave me personal insight into each of my trainees. 

Also, I gained a sense of how well I was establishing a rapport with my trainees. They really shared some very personal information about themselves. This showed they trusted that I would not make any judgments or let what they shared be known to anyone. They trusted my discretion. Most definitely, I would not betray that trust. 

Several of them did not submit their work because the bad weather created very rough waters. The ship's administration did not allow for classes to begin until the latter part of the morning. So, some did not even come because their "sea legs had buckled." 

I received e-mails from some letting me know they were unable to attend class because of illness. And those who attended looked a tad worn and "green around the gills." So, I let everyone know that s/he could send me their themes via e-mail before midnight. This is what most did. 

Grading the Papers

For this assignment, I only graded the content presentation. The rubric I have used for grading their papers is the Evaluation Sheet that is on one of the pass-protected sites. They can always use it as a sample. I encourage them to make copies and use these items as a checklist: 

Thesis Sentence:               50 pts.
Introductory Paragraph:     20 pts.
Topic Sentence:                 20 pts.
Body Paragraphs:              40 pts.
Organization:                     20 pts.
Unity:                                 15 pts.
Coherence:                        15 pts.
Concluding Paragraph:      20 pts.

Each set of points is earned if all of the criteria that are indicated on the Evaluation Sheet are met for each paragraph. If any of you are interested in seeing the full Evaluation Sheet, please feel free to contact me. I shall send you a copy. Contact me at

Needless to say, I did write comments throughout each trainees paper.  Although I did not include any of the mechanics and grammatical errors that were in a trainee’s paper for this paper’s grade, I did mark them and re-emphasize where each trainee could garner guidance to learn to eliminate these errors. 
I referred them to specific chapters in the handbook as well as material on the pass-protected sites, especially, the certain podcast on Pass-Protected Site #2. Also, I encouraged them to continue to ask me questions for guidance.

On Day One I asked them which grammatical and mechanics errors they would like for me to discuss. They noted the ones they have seen from the other paper that has challenged them:

• Pronoun errors
• Verb errors
• Comma errors

So, on Day One, I covered those errors. I asked them to share with the other trainees errors I have marked on their first paper. They did. We had a lively discussion about to “fix” these errors. 

Helping My Trainee

One of my trainees was quite confused with the issue of pronoun-antecedent agreement issues, especially, when indefinite pronouns serve as the antecedents:

"Everybody was enjoying the rock concert. They could not wait to get home and play the music they had enjoyed at the concert."

Of course, the correction should be: 

"Everyone was enjoying the rock concert. S/he could not wait to get home and play the music s/he had enjoyed at the concert.

Although I pointed him and other trainees to the list of singular indefinite pronouns in their handbook, this particular trainee just could not see the logic of “everybody” being singular. Thus, the pronouns replacing that antecedent had to be singular, too. 

I tried to explain using a visual point to individual people in the session, thus, meaning one person at a time. I believe this physical designation helped several. However, the one trainee was just not “getting it” or “accepting it.” I plan to try to figure out a better way of explaining why this correction is right. 

Hey, if any of you have any suggestions, I shall be glad to share it with others who are reading this log.

Day Two

Well, there was no training session, today. Why? The waters were quite rough, that day, too, even worse. I had not experienced such rough waters in a long time, too rough for a class. Wow!

Still, I was able to grade and return the papers to my onboard trainees. I just sent their graded work via e-mail, just as I have done with online trainees.


My online trainees, also, had to submit the Definition theme. They, also, were satisfying to grade. Just as with my onboard trainees, the papers of my online trainees demonstrated that I had, also, established rapport. They shared freely in their papers personal aspects of their lives. They demonstrated quite clearly how some of their personality traits helped them overcome certain challenges.

And, just as with my onboard trainees’ papers, I marked errors, provided through comments, and directed them to resources that are in their handbook.

Yes, this ship is definitely foraging ahead in good and not-so-good weather!

I shall log in next week with hopes that the waters calm for us.   

What do you think about DR C's Academic Online Cruise Ship? Tell us your thoughts in the comments box below this post?

What do you think about DR C's Academic Online Cruise Ship? Tell us your thoughts in the comment box below this post

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