Can Time-Traveling Superheroes Pass Test?
Students find Knox tests, projects can be fun, engaging
November 21, 2013
Auty Rohweder makes presentation to class on her time-traveling superhero. More student term projects and exams in the photo gallery below.
Time traveling superheroes Johnny and Jenny can do just about anything -- they're time-traveling superheroes, after all -- except go to the future and bring back the answers for your final exam. That would be a violation of the Knox College Honor Code. But they can still help Knox students get better grades, based on evaluations of their design presentations for the imaginary characters in the fall term class, Theatre 121 "Design and Technology for Stage and Screen." The presentations concluded on November 20, the last day of the term, and final exams are scheduled for Nov. 23-25.
Even though the course is at the introductory level, the superhero project -- the final one of the 10-week term -- is an engaging, fun format that requires research into historical periods from ancient Greece through the 1960s, said Craig Choma, associate professor of theatre.
"The project gets students to embrace research and understand the difference between primary research and secondary research," Choma said. "You have to be selective about your research and synthesize disparate elements into a unified whole."
Jacob Schneider, a junior theatre major and the teaching assistant for the course, observed that all students had the same assignment, but the format allowed them to show their creativity.
"There are a lot of opportunities for success. We had 18 projects, and no two of them are similar. You can take an infinite number of approaches, and when you narrow things down, you come up with interesting results."
Even students with "old school" written final exams are not tied to their desks or classrooms. The Knox College Honor Code allows students to take tests in a wide variety of public locations on campus.