Using an Unlimited Rewrite option (and why you might never want to do so)

(Since we had some discussion during Admin Week about my unlimited rewrite approach, plus a few people asked me for more details subsequently, I thought I’d post some details and thoughts on the subject. Plus, since people are presumably still putting the finishing touches to their syllabi for the Fall semester, perhaps someone else would want to try it out. Anyhow, I’m very interested to hear your thoughts on it and any suggestions you might have for improvement/modification.)

Policy details:

The rewrite policy that I utilize has the following components:

1 – Students can rewrite any and all essays, as many times as they wish, throughout the course of the semester. They are usually limited to doing so until a week before the last day of classes.

2 – A rewrite must be submitted with all changes in a different color (usually blue), to clearly set them apart from the original text.

3 – Rewrites are returned with the same volume of feedback as earlier drafts.

4 – The rewrite grade completely replaces the original grade that the essay received, e.g. a D paper rewritten into a B will count as a B paper for the course. If a rewrite actually makes the grade worse, then I use the original grade.

5 – A late (or other) penalty that the original essay has still applies to any rewrites.

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