I am nearly finished unpacking. If I put in a good day today, I can probably finish all that can be done right now, including hanging artwork. Then I'll just have to wait a few days until I rent a car and can unclutter the study area by driving ten or so boxes up to my office at the New Uni (will think of a name for the Uni soon...and am still working on the more positive name for Scary City!).
So, what this means is that I'm about to get back to work. And, given the crazily over-ambitious late summer to-do list I've posted on my sidebar (especially crazy given that R will be here for eight days in the middle of it), that is a great thing.
The first order of business, to ease myself back into things, will be to finish course design for my two fall courses. Readings are all set, of course, but I need to design the evaluation structure and write the syllabi.
I will have just over twice the number of students I had last year (yeah, I was one lucky contract/visiting prof last year at Dream Uni). I'll have about 110 students. 90 of them will be in my first-year, Intro course. And there are no tutorials (which pisses me off - my first order of business in this new job will be to change that, get a TA, for next year). This means I'll be responsible for grading for 90 students in this one class. Apparently I can get an undergraduate TA, but the only thing I'd trust an undergrad with would be things like quizzes - no written work. I have never given a quiz - it doesn't make sense with my discipline, nor my teaching style. Ugh. (Though will probably give in to it.)
So my question is, how have some of you managed with designing assignments for huge classes where you have to do all the marking yourselves? What have your evaluation structures looked like? How do you not get swamped??
In 2005-06, on my first contract gig, I taught a class of 50 and one of 60. In those big classes, I assigned way too much. It was back-breaking. Now that I'm TT at a place with fairly ambitious research goals, I just can't do that to myself. My fall is going to be insane enough as it is, what with a SSHRC proposal, two conferences, a couple of visitors from Home City, and getting acclimated to a new university - and running and growing a program! So, though it goes against my ideas of what good teaching looks like, I want to be pragmatic about this and easy on myself - somehow without sacrificing the students' learning.
Any suggestions for sane assignment design for large classes would be much appreciated.