As you design your future learning goals essay, please use the following standards of excellence to guide your work. These represent the particular criteria that your instructors will be looking for and giving feedback on for this assignment. These standards form the basis of our full grading rubric, on which we base our end-of-semester assessment of portfolios.
- Title – Does your essay have an expressive title?
- Introductory Paragraph – Do the introductory paragraphs outline future goals and plans and the criteria, guidelines, or strategies used to determine the areas of focus for the essay?
- Compelling Narrative – Does the essay tell a coherent and compelling story about the knowledge you need to excel in the future? Does it effectively use text (and possibly other media) to do so?
- Topics and Resources – Do you include three distinct topics with fully-functioning links to corresponding resources?
- Word Count Is your essay about 750 words?
- Avoid Jargon – Remember that people outside your program or workplace might not understand all the terms and acronyms you use. It’s always a good idea to “spell out” an acronym the first time you use it, and you should also consider defining terms that aren’t commonly used.
- Advance organizers – Think about adding an “advance organizer”— a sentence or two to introduce and summarize these goals—before writing about them in more detail.
- Add context – Your goals are your own, but they fit into a larger context—try to relate these goals to the school where you teach or the world that you live in.
- Add a Link to a PDF – Think about adding a link to a PDF copy on this page so that viewers have the opportunity to read your essay in an alternative format (and this makes for easier printing if someone wanted to print your essay).
- Avoid PDF only access – An additional link to a PDF is great, but it cannot replace a web-page version of your essay. If you’re going to do one format, put your essay on a webpage. If you want to go that extra step, add an additional option for a PDF (not a replacement for a webpage)