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III. Grading

The courses in this section use a variety of grading rubrics, but a few generalizations are possible. In-class exams are quite rare, and are best used if there is a substantive law component that can be tested in a traditional way.

Most of these courses use several different evaluative mechanisms to compile a grade. While the weight attributed to these mechanisms varies with the structure of the course, class participation, final product (which can be a paper, a business plan, a drafted set of documents) and oral and/or team presentations are usually included.

Many professors use the background memo or weekly journal as an evaluative tool, particularly where team projects constitute a large part of the grade. These memos provide a window into the group dynamics as well some guide on how the workload was shared.

The journal mechanism also enables the professor to evaluate student progress or growth over the course. This is particularly useful where students enter the course with widely differing levels of sophistication. While prerequisite courses are commonly use to establish a baseline level of substantive competence, such courses will not alone eliminate the differences among student knowledge or, more particularly, experience.

Several of the articles on teaching collected here discuss grading. 

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