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Configuring Research Assignment Library

(Note that this article refers to the new version of assignments in Scrible to be released in Fall 2021)

The Scrible Research Assignment provides a very flexible framework for setting up a number of different types of assignments for your students.  A few examples

The Research Assignment centers around a Scrible Library that is created for each student in the assignment.  It allows you to enable and disable different features of the library, pre-populate sources in the library and provide templates for papers.  Many of these features can be changed at any time during the assignment, so for example you can disable everything but the Sources tab to focus students on collecting quality sources, and then once that is complete, you can enable the bibliography or the outline tab to let them move on to the next step.

In various places, you can set requirements for the students to complete.  The requirements you set drive the metrics shown in the assignment dashboard which provides an overview of student progress in the assignment.

Below, we'll go through the various configuration options and what they do.  In the future we'll add some guides for setting up a few specific example assignments.


While editing an assignment, the Basics tab contains the standard information for the assignment (title, instructions, due and close dates, and how it will be distributed).  For group subscriptions, a Co-Teachers tab will be present which allows adding other teachers to the assignment.  Co-teachers have all the same access as the teacher who creates the assignment.

The Options and Requirements tab is where you'll find the detailed configuration options for what students will see in the assignment library and what the requirements are.  Inside this tab, there are 4 additional tabs: Sources, Bibliography, Outline, and Papers which are described in detail below.

Sources

Source Count Requirement

Enabling the source count requirement lets you specify the minimum number of sources you want each student to find for their assignment.  Note that this count will exclude any sources you add to the assignment as described below.  Enabling this requirement will cause the assignment dashboard to include a metric for the number of sources each student has saved and some additional details.

Include Sources

When this is selected, you have the ability to add sources to the assignment.  A copy of each of these sources will be created in each student's assignment library.

There are two options for adding sources.

Add from a Scrible Library

This allows you to add sources that you've already saved in Scrible to the assignment.  If you've made any annotations in these sources, those will be copied to each student as well, so you could add comments with questions for the students to answer, etc.  

If you want to avoid your students needing to search for source material on the open web, this provides a way to provide them material to work with for the assignment.

Add Bookmark

Bookmarks are particular website URLs you want to suggest to the students for their research.  For instance, you might point them at a database to which your school subscribes where they can search for quality articles about the topic for the assignment.  These sites will show up as bookmark entries in their assignment library in addition to being featured as Recommended Sources in the assignment page.  Please note that they are currently not restricted to only saving articles from these sources.


Bibliography

Enable bibliography and citation features

Checking this option includes the bibliography and citation features in the assignment library, otherwise students won't see a Bibliography tab in their assignment library.

Set bibliography source count requirement

Enabling this will let you specify the minimum number of sources you want each student to include in their bibliography.  Enabling this requirement will cause the assignment dashboard to include a metric for the number of sources each student has in their bibliography and some additional details.

Use annotated bibliography

Checking this option will default the bibliography to show the Citation Annotation from each source.  The Citation Annotation is a field in our citation editor which allows entering a review or summary of a source for creating an annotated bibliography.

Set citation annotation word count requirement

(conditionally shown when Use annotated bibliography is checked) Enabling this will let you specify the minimum number of words you want each student to write in the citation annotation of each source.  Enabling this requirement will cause the assignment dashboard to include a metric for the number of sources that meet this requirement.

Citation Style

The citation style dropdown allows you to preset the citation style to be used for the assignment.

Allow students to choose citation style

Checking this option will allow students to change the citation style from the citation style chosen above.

Use split bibliography

For certain projects (in particular National History Day) it is necessary to split the bibliography into two separate bibliographies; one for primary sources and another for secondary sources.  Checking this option will default the assignment bibliography to use this split bibliography format.



Outline

Enable outline features

Unchecking this option will hide the Outline tab of the student's assignment library.


Papers

Enable paper features

Unchecking this option will hide the Papers tab of the student's assignment library.

Add Paper

Clicking the Add Paper button will allow you to add a paper to the assignment.  When adding the paper, you'll be able to choose to use a blank document OR to pick an existing document from Google Drive or OneDrive.

Note that to add a paper to the assignment, you must enable our Google Drive integration and/or the Microsoft 365 OneDrive integration.

You can add a paper to an assignment at any point in time.  However the assignment creates a copy of the document at the time you add it, so no additional changes can be made to the document once added.  Before assigning the assignment, you could remove and re-add the document to pick up changes if needed. After the assignment is assigned, if you remove a paper, students who have already joined the assignment will retain that paper in their library (to avoid loss of any work they may have done in it).

Set a word count requirement 

You can enable this requirement to specify the minimum number of words for the paper.  This will also add a metric in the assignment dashboard which displays the student's progress to meeting this requirement.  If you're used to specifying pages instead of number of words, there are roughly 250 words in a double spaced page of text.  Here are some additional resources for approximating a word count from number of pages: