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Levels of Connection

Bowling Green University,

“Connecting” is the essence of creative problem solving, shown in synthesizing knowledge within and across courses, integrating theory and practice, linking academic and life experiences, and relating one’s self and culture to diverse cultures within the U.S. and globally.  The quality of connections made in course assignments will be evaluated using the features defining the four levels shown below.     

Level 1 Connection (Beginner)

  • Describe similarities and differences in a collection or set of items

  • Categorize items or observations into groups

  • Recognize simple links among topics or concepts in a course

  • Offer accurate definitions of terms and concepts

  • Describe the setting (e.g., context, environment, culture, domain) in which connections are being made

Level 2 Connection (Novice)

  • Organize groups of items into ordered collections and specify the organizing principle(s)

  • Recognize links among topics and concepts presented in different courses

  • Relate and use information from other courses or experiences in the current setting

  • Formulate generalizations about collections or sets of items

  • Distinguish concrete and abstract representations

  • Identify disciplinary concepts (theories, frameworks) and instances of their application

Level 3 Connection (Proficient)

  • Use disciplinary frameworks and concepts to illuminate relationships among apparently diverse items

  • Examine phenomena from multiple viewpoints, both concretely and abstractly

  • Specify the limits or boundaries within which generalizations apply

  • Apply abstract academic knowledge to solve concrete practical problems

Level 4 Connection (Advanced)

  • Identify ways to reconcile diverse or conflicting priorities, viewpoints, or options.

  • Call attention to something that has not been adequately noticed by others (e.g., a subtle or deep relationship, novel findings or interpretations, the context or frame of reference)

  • Apply frameworks from multiple domains of knowledge and practice to create something (e.g., business plan, musical composition, thesis, capstone paper, research project)

  • Integrate diverse elements into a product, performance or artifact that fits its context coherently

Levels of Participation

Bowling Green University, http

“Participating” is a matter of active engagement, rather than passive observation, and is shown through working effectively in diverse groups and teams, as well as through cooperation and respect for others.  Participation quality in this course will be evaluated using the features defining the four levels shown below.    

Level 1 Participation (Beginner)

  • Little or no advance preparation

  • Lets others set and pursue the agenda

  • Observes passively and says little or nothing

  • Responds to questions

  • Gives the impression of wanting to be somewhere else

  • Attendance record is haphazard and inconsistent; may be absent or late without notice

Level 2  Participation (Novice)

  • Moderately prepared in advance

  • Takes some part in setting group goals and agendas

  • Participates in discussions, letting others provide the direction

  • Occasionally introduces information or asks questions

  • If likely to be absent or late, informs others ahead of time and arranges to cover own responsibilities

Level 3 Participation (Proficient)

  • Well prepared in advance

  • Takes a large part in setting group goals and agendas

  • Actively participates in discussion and asks questions

  • Listens actively and shows understanding by paraphrasing or by acknowledging and building on others’ ideas

  • Volunteers willingly and carries own share of the group’s responsibilities

Level 4 Participation (Advanced)

  • All of the markers of proficient participation, plus:

  • Draws out ideas or concerns of others, especially those who have said little

  • Re-visits issues or ideas that need more attention

  • Helps the group stay on track

  • Summarizes group decisions and action assignments

Levels of Presentation

Bowling Green University,

“Presenting” requires fluency not only in English or another language, but often also in other symbol systems, such as logical, mathematical, visual, spatial, musical, electronic, or gestures and movements.  Speaking quality for course presentations will be evaluated using the features defining the four levels shown below. 

Level 1 Presenting (Beginner)

Ill-defined or no announced purpose

  • Unfocused sense of audience

  • Inadequate organization and/or development

  • Inappropriate or insufficient details to support ideas

  • Does not demonstrate understanding of topic beyond a surface level

  • Looks only at notes or away from audience

  • Vocal qualities (pace, inflection, volume, enunciation) distract from the content

  • Lacks interest in the topic

Level 2  Presenting (Novice)

  • Vague purpose or multiple purposes

  • Sense of audience wavers

  • Evident but inconsistent development

  • Does not advance an argument with adequate support 

  • Demonstrates some understanding of the topic, but does make connections among ideas

  • Little eye contact is made with audience

  • Vocal qualities (pace, inflection, volume, enunciation) interfere with the content

  • Shows some interest for the topic

Level 3 Presenting (Proficient)

  • Expresses a clear, coherent thesis

  • Sticks to the purpose and provides adequate transitions among ideas

  • Moves beyond surface understanding and demonstrates facility with topical and disciplinary knowledge and vocabulary

  • Advances argument with sound evidence and references

  • Appropriate eye contact is made with audience

  • Vocal qualities (pace, inflection, volume, enunciation) support the content

  • Shows enthusiasm for topic

Level 4 Presenting (Advanced)

  • Insightful, creative or skillfully presented purpose

  • Awareness of audience demonstrated through form, language, and presence

  • Effective organization contributes to full development of presentation

  • Innovatively or expertly advances the presentation with well-researched evidence and documentation

  • Eye contact is used to  gauge reactions and understanding

  • Vocal qualities (pace, inflection, volume, enunciation) reinforce and animate the content

  • Creates enthusiasm about topic in others

Levels of Investigation

Bowling Green University,, downloaded March 21, 2002

“Investigate” calls attention to systematic processes of exploring issues, collecting and analyzing evidence, and making informed judgments.  Investigation quality for course assignments will be evaluated using the features defining the four levels shown below.

Level 1 Investigation (Beginner)

  • Questions and goal(s) of investigation not stated clearly or appropriately (e.g., may be too broad, superficial, specific, and/or at a structural level)

  • Few, inappropriate, or irrelevant sources reviewed for background information

  • Review of background information does not aid in answering question(s) and goal(s) of current project

  • Method of investigation not discussed or described poorly

  • Strategy for analysis not outlined or outlined poorly

  • Does not distinguish facts from opinions

  • Offers basic description of background research, but no evaluation, conclusion, or extension of this research

Level 2 Investigation (Novice)

  • Questions and goal(s) of investigation stated with sufficient, general focus

  • Multiple sources (mostly relevant) used for background information

  • Surface level of evaluation is offered, with only confirmatory (and no disconfirmatory) evidence to support ideas

  • Method of investigation is described, but is flawed or unrealistic

  • Strategy for analysis is discussed, but incomplete

  • Facts are separated from opinions

  • Reasonable but limited inferences and conclusions drawn from background information

Level 3 Investigation (Proficient)

  • Questions and goal(s) of project stated explicitly, with appropriate focus

  • Multiple relevant sources searched for background information

  • Sufficient number of sources to provide a representative depiction of relevant background information

  • Review of background information considers both confirming and disconfirming evidence

  • Method of investigation sufficient to answer all research questions

  • Analysis strategy is direct, competent, and appropriate

  • Conclusions are based on the results of the analysis, as a logical extension of the findings, or demonstrating an understanding of theory as well as how to apply it to current project

Level 4 Investigation (Advanced)

All of the positive features of proficient investigation, plus:

  • Questions and goal(s) of investigation are original, reflecting an in-depth knowledge of content area, and consider an issue(s) that previous investigations did not address

  • Review of background information considers both confirmatory and disconfirmatory evidence of ideas, and refutes competing explanations of findings

  • Possible multiple methods of investigation sufficient to answer all research questions and reflects a sophisticated understanding of investigative processes

  • Analysis strategy has depth and may consider material from content areas outside of main focus of questions and goal(s) of project

  • Convincing conclusions are drawn from current investigation and generalizations to related areas are proposed (demonstrates an understanding of theory as well as how to apply it beyond the current project

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