Contents of the course
During spring 2020, the course consists of lectures (around 20 hours), different types of individual assignments (around 60 hours), and a group assignment (around 55 hours).
There are nine lectures in the course. The course follows an active learning model where the students are introduced to the course materials through pre-lecture assignments. The face-to-face in-class sessions are then used to deepen this self-learning through different types of activities, such as discussing the pre-lecture assignment readings or working on applied problems in small groups. Additional content relating to the theme of the week will be delivered through lecturing between these activities.
Due to the active learning model, it is important that the student complete the pre-lecture assignment and are prepared to actively engage with in-class activities. The lectures are not compulsory but advisable for students who intend to achieve higher-level learning outcomes.
2. Individual assignments
There are three types of individual assignments: pre-lecture assignments, a blog post, and a personal learning reflection. All these assignments need to be written individually.
Before lectures, students will self-study the course materials through pre-lecture assignments. Each assignment typically includes 1-3 self-study materials ranging from research articles to easier materials such as textbook chapters, popular press articles, videos or podcasts. Different types of exercises will be conducted based on the materials.
During the course, students will write a blog post based on one popular press article related to the course themes. For the blog post, students need to find a recent article in the popular press related to the course themes. The blog post will describe other students why this article is interesting to read and how it relates to the week’s themes and materials. The students will be able to choose during which week they want to write their own blog post.
At the end of the course, students will write a personal learning reflection where they analyze their own learning and reflect on the relevance of this learning to their own future careers.
3. Group assignment
The group assignment is a literature review on a topic motivated by a practical phenomenon or problem related to the course themes.
The group will first interview an expert to understand the nature and current challenges related to that type of knowledge work. The expert interview summaries will be shared with the whole class through a blog post. Motivated by these interviews, each group will define a practical phenomenon or problem they aim to understand better through academic literature.
A process approach is used to work on the report. This means that the group will first write a topic description defining the practical phenomenon or problem they aim to understand better and the literature they intend to use. The group will start to
review the literature and submit an interim draft, based on which they will receive feedback from the course teachers. The feedback will help the group to write and submit a full version of their report. The group will receive peer feedback for this
version, based on which they can improve the report before submitting the final version that will be graded. Groups can also receive a second round of teacher feedback if they wish.
After finishing the report, the group will write a summary of their report findings and share it with the whole class through a blog post.
All work in the course needs to be written in English.
All written works will go through a Turnitin originality check to avoid plagiarism. if plagiarism problems are found, work will be returned to the students for revising, and points will be deducted from that particular assignment. Turnitin compares the submissions to a large database of student work (returned at Aalto and other universities), websites, books, articles, etc. Based on this comparison, Turnitin provides feedback to both the student and the teacher on the duplication of text. Turnitin gives students feedback on any missing sources, and makes the originality check transparent and comprehensive. Please be careful when writing referral policies!
For more information on Turnitin use in Aalto, see Aalto-wiki. For more information on academic integrity in Aalto, see Aalto University Code of Academic Integrity and Handling Violations Thereof.
EDIT 28.2.2020: We have doubled the points of all assignments due to the fact that Turnitin does not allow for half points. This does not affect the grading in any way, as the relative weight of different assignments remains the same.
|Individual assignments (52%)|
|Pre-lecture assignments, 6 points each||0-42 points|
|Blog post||0-4 points|
|Personal learning reflection||0-6 points|
|Group assignment (48%)|
|Expert interview summary (blog)||0-6 points|
|Topic description||0-2 points|
|Interim draft||pass/fail - teacher feedback version|
|Full draft||pass/fail - peer feedback version|
|Final version||0-30 points|
|Report summary (blog)||0-4 points|
|Peer feedback||0-6 points|
Grading scale (added 25.5.2020)
Half points are rounded up.
For passing the course, students need to a) obtain a minimum of 24 points on the individual assignments, and b) submit all parts of the group assignment. For course feedback, students will receive an additional 1 point to be counted in the point total.
EDIT 24.6.2020: The grading scale has been changed so that there is no minimum total points requirement for grade 1. This is to ensure that there wouldn't be any additions to the originally posted requirements for passing the course.
All submissions have a strict deadline based on the timeline of the course. If the timeline permits, extensions to the deadlines can be agreed upon by request in advance – please contact the course personnel.
For each submission that is late less than a week, two points will be deduced in grading. For each submission that is late for more than a week, three points will be deduced in grading. All individual assignments and parts of the group assignment need to be submitted before the end of the spring term (29.5.2020) or they will no longer be graded.
EDIT 14.4.2020: The points deducted for late submissions are not counted out of the individual assignment points when evaluating the 24 point minimum needed to pass the course.