SCI (STEM College iPads): Using Notability

SCI (STEM College iPads): Using Notability

Have you ever wondered what it’s like not to have a briefcase full of papers during the middle of the semester? Well, I can personally tell you it’s a wonderful feeling. Not because I still haven’t worked out how to eliminate grading (and not sure I’d ever want to), but the weight of carrying all those papers around, having them clutter up my house, and then the problem when I misplace one is now gone!

Notability is an amazing app. Sure, you do have to pay for it, but if you are a college professor and considering grading digital content I can’t recommend it enough. Here’s the current workflow for my class:

  • 1) Student downloads assignment from iTunes U.
  • 2) Students complete assignment, either on iPad, laptop or desktop using Word, Notes, Docs or Notability.
  • 3) Students submit assignment to iTunes U.
  • 4) Professor downloads submitted assignment from iTunes U.

5) Professor imports assignment to Notability.

6) Professor grades in Notability using their side by side feature, so a rubric can be completed simultaneously.

7) Professor copies rubric in Notability to student’s assignment.

8) Professor submits assignment through Notability to iTunes U, which allows you to assign to a particular student for a particular assignment, and submit a grade.

And that’s it, I’m done.

I carry my iPad everywhere, so at any time I can start the grading process. Students like them too. They are initially a little frustrated with how things work, but they quickly adapt. I have found that they particularly like the privacy of iTunes U (rather than paper platforms), they like we are saving trees, and that they don’t have to pay for color copies of their work.

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