Teaching a subject with lab work meant that students were completing work in their lab books. This meant I had to carry around student lab books, mark them in a week, and get them back to students whenever I wanted to provide feedback. Cadmus presented an opportunity for me to streamline this workflow. Ultimately, it allowed me to take my assessment online.
Before Cadmus, I had students complete their assessment in a workbook. To give feedback or see how they were going, I had to have them hand in their book and review each individually. I was also limited in how I presented students with information in the workbook.
With Cadmus, I moved it online and broke the assessment into 3 tasks. I presented the information as it would appear in a journal and gave more targeted support to students.
Student’s responded really positively. I sent out surveys and found ~70% of them wanted to use Cadmus again.
I felt like I was much more effective with my teaching than ever before. Once I started using Cadmus, I went… “huh, they don’t know how to do that.” My thinking shifted from focusing on the final product to the process. Until I was encouraged to scaffold students through the task, it hadn't occurred to me that they may not know how to do some of the parts of a lab report. Instead of telling students to add a legend or annotate an image, I showed them how to do it. With Cadmus, it was really easy to guide students to develop these skills. I saw a big improvement with all but 2 students improving throughout the semester.
I would recommend Cadmus for anyone that does lab based work. It’s a really good tool to improve what we want from students. It will encourage you to develop extra resources to support your students.