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Whether you head a large university, a college, campus or an online program, student learning, retention and success mean a lot to you. RichFeedback’s Virtual Teaching Assistants can help your faculty provide students with rich, timely feedback on their assignments. Called Virtual-TA, the service can free faculty up for more mission-critical duties. Your faculty members retain complete control over the grading process because they design the assignment and the learning outcomes, approve our rubrics, sign-off on an interim check of a sample of scored papers and ultimately assign a letter grade.

Improves Student Learning and Retention

Research indicates that students who receive timely and detailed feedback engage more in their courses. These students enjoy their coursework and pursue their studies more vigorously than those who do not receive this type of feedback.  Yet, students in large, core courses rarely receive personalized attention. Virtual-TA reverses this syndrome by providing individualized, detailed feedback on key class assignments. RichFeedback’s Virtual-TA service improves student learning as well as retention and graduation rates by making courses more engaging.

Adds a Highly Qualified Teaching-Support Team for Your Faculty

When your institution uses our Virtual-TA service, it’s like having a highly qualified team of Teaching Assistants available for all your faculty teaching core courses or large sections. RichFeedback’s Virtual-TA’s hold Masters or PhD degrees and are qualified in their subject domain areas. Virtual-TA’s service enables faculty to provide robust, rich feedback to students in a timely and efficient way, especially for large, core courses. Faculty can then focus on teaching and extensively assign written essays that encourage critical-thinking and higher-order skills among their students. The onerous task of grading hundreds of papers is reduced to reviewing papers and assigning grades.

Overcomes Inability to Give Students Individual Attention

Industry and businesses are increasingly attracting graduate-degree holders. As demand for higher education grows, especially from adult learners, institutions struggle to hire and retain faculty. Even when you have sufficient faculty, they may be overburdened and not able to provide individualized feedback to their students. Our Virtual-TA service solves this problem by providing a well-qualified and thoroughly trained group of graduate-degree qualified Teaching Assistants. Given our powerful, web-based engagement model, it doesn’t matter where your institution is located or whether your programs are taught online or on campus.

Supports Good Teaching Practices

Often, due to the sheer numbers of students in a class, faculty resort to multiple-choice tests or group-level assignments. Students learn in different ways. A variety of assignment types allows them to demonstrate what they’ve learned. Through Virtual-TA, faculty can confidently assign essays, knowing they have the support to read, review, and critique each one individually. Our Virtual-TAs do the heavy-lifting of reviewing, embedding feedback and scoring against the rubric; your faculty members can selectively review our work and assign a grade.

Helps Students Improve Writing and Higher-Order Thinking Skills

Virtual-TA helps students improve written-communication skills in all disciplines. From English Language Arts through History, Virtual-TA supports excellence in writing skills. Writers improve their craft after receiving and acting on detailed feedback, without which they have no way of knowing where to focus their effort. Essays also foster higher-order thinking because students must articulate an issue, structure their arguments and logically convince the reader into believing their conclusions.

Track and Monitor Student Learning Outcomes (SLOs)

Virtual-TA facilitates tracking and monitoring of student learning outcomes. Because every assignment is scored on a rubric (which comes from your faculty or that we design and have your faculty approve), our service automatically produces student learning-outcomes data. You can then use that data in your overall assessment-of-learning process to improve the quality of the assignments, pedagogy or the curriculum. As a bonus, such SLO data can also be used in your reporting to accreditation bodies.

Reduces Costs for the Institution

Administrators (chairs, directors, deans and provosts) will find the economics of Virtual-TA compelling. Because it is expensive to have faculty carry out rich-feedback grading, our Virtual-TA service can save you money. What’s more, faculty, now relieved of the grading, will be more willing to teach slightly-larger classes. Every student receives rich, timely feedback; so, far from the quality of attention suffering, we offer you a way to improve student learning.

Recruit Qualified Faculty from Industry

Most institutions cannot attract practitioners from industry to teach as adjuncts because the grading load is the single biggest deterrent. Practitioners, especially the ones with vast experience, are deterred from teaching due to the vast amount of time it takes in grading assignments, but often would love to teach and pass their insights on to the next generation. Offer them a Virtual-TA and see how quickly they sign-up to teach.

Differentiate Your Institution to Attract More, Better Students

Attract more students to your institution by marketing and showing the type of rich feedback your institution provides using the Virtual-TA service. Rich feedback on writing and other assignments can not only improve student learning and retention, but can also be used to attract more students to your institution. Everything else on campus is secondary to student learning!

A New Paradigm for Higher Education

It’s time to rethink our traditional notions of how teaching and learning is structured, and how to best use your instructor’s expertise. Let faculty do what they do best: impart knowledge. Improve the quality of teaching, while lowering your instructional costs!

To set up a meeting or to get
more information, e-mail us at sales@richfeedback.com

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