My school has been using Blackboard for the last 7 years. During that 7 years more and more teachers have begun having students turn in assignments via Blackboard. It is however a very tedious process to get assigments in this way. The assignments need to be saved locally to the teacher's computer, graded and then resaved, and then uploaded back to blackboard one at a time. I'm looking for a more efficient way to do this. We are starting a one-to-one tablet pc program next year with our incoming students. I know Dyknow has a way to do this, but I just found out today that we don't have the funds available to adopt Dyknow for the coming school year. Does anyone have a suggestion on a solution for a more efficient way that teachers can receive, grade and return electronic assignments?
I use Wetpaint. Students can type their essays directly into the wiki, which is a positive for us, as many of my students haven't got reliable access to technology, so this allows them to work a bit at a time. I set a "window" of time, during which other students can edit/comment on/review the work. After that window closes, I mark the assignment, taking into account the changes made over the life of the document, as well as the final product. The document remains posted, though, so students can refer back, not only to their own work/comments, but also to classmates. Wetpaint wikis allow me to comment on the document, but mail the student easily and privately with the numerical grade or any more personal concerns.
It is possible in Moodle to create an "Online Text Assignment". Students can submit their assignments by typing them directly into Moodle, or by copying and pasting from a word processor. When creating the Online Text Assignment, you might want to have the "Inline Comments" option checked.
If you are just asking students to respond to an essay title, there is an amazing range of options available. But what if you want to set a more complex assignment, for example asking the students to respond in a structured way to several questions, or even to images or videos? Here's a screencast I made last week of me creating a rich media assignment in Yacapaca. I can access, grade, and comment on students' responses as they enter them.
Hope all is well. I wanted to share with you that this process is one of the changes that has already been released through Project NG. If you haven't had a chance to play around with NG yet, I would be happy to set up a demo account so that you can check out this new feature as well as some of our other changes. Drop me a line if you are interested.
I've used PBwiki for this because I can track the students' efforts, revisions, and general writing process. After I am finished grading the papers, the students are able to correct the suggestions I've given them. PBwiki appears to be the easiest wiki platform for setting up users without having to worry about student e-mails. The wiki platform also creates a universal platform on which all of my students will have the opportunity to produce their writing.
Thanks to all who have responded to this thread. I hope to check out some of the solutions you suggested this summer when I have some time. I'm finishing the first school year in a one-to-one program using DyKnow and am amazed at how versatile the panel submit and return process is. Just about any assignment can be converted to a DyKnow panel. It's light years ahead of what a typical LMS can do.