Building student’s capacity for judgement from the beginning
Building a student's capacity to make judgements of their own work and that of others needs to be considered from the start. It should not be deferred to the latter stages of a course/module.
This does not mean that each of the approaches discussed on this site is useful at the start of a program. All tasks need to be tailored to the context and to students’ prior knowledge or skill.
In the first stages of a completely new topic, time needs to be spent on understanding new material before some of the reflexive approaches discussed can be effective.
Develop students’ identity as learners
Some students enter higher education without a commitment to being a learner. Teaching effort can often successfully encourage students to actively position themselves as learners who are expected to take responsibility for what they do (except for those who are really resistant).
Lecturers need to emphasise their unrelenting expectation that students will become learners and develop an an appreciation of all that this requires. This needs to occur in the earliest weeks of a program along with the staging of the tasks which will reinforce it. Student lack of engagement is a sign that they are not developing an identity as a learner and that steps need to be taken to involve them more in the course. There is a growing literature on student engagement that provides useful ideas for addressing this.