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For Instructors: Grading with the Modules


  • Underline the word or phrase with the mistake.
  • Consult the list, Grading with the Modules
  • Write above the underlined word or phrase the number of the module where the student can learn to correct his or her mistake.
  • Where a word is missing, write the number of the applicable module.


This method has been tried for multiple semesters at the college level. Instructors have reported at least a 30% reduction in grading time. Over half of the grammar mistakes made by students were addressed using the modules.

One of the goals of the modules is to save teachers time when grading. Grading student writing is a particularly challenging task. Like many teachers, I have tried different rubrics and combinations of rubrics. Some advocate a more detailed rubric to anticipate complaints of students about not being able to figure out what the rubric means and how to go about correcting the mistake. Others believe that a simple underlining scheme indicating that there is a mistake is all they should tell students. There is some utility in both positions. Many mistakes can be easily identified and corrected when someone simply flags them, as evident in the common, "I knew that, how could I have made such a silly mistake"? In some cases, however, the learner may not be able to see what the problem is, even when the teacher indicates that there is a mistake.

The modules incorporate both systems: underlining, plus a number that refers students to a particular module when needed. Click here to see a list of the modules with a number for each module. The procedure is straightforward: underline the mistake and write above the underlined word or phrase the number of the module that the student can review to correct the mistake. As suggested above, the name of the module might be all that some students will need to correct many errors. As is clear from the list, the modules focus on grammar problems. Modules related to vocabulary and rhetoric are planned for a later phase of this project.


Instead of writing an explanation or referring the student to different places, the instructor simply consults the list and writes a number over the underlined word or expression. Students go to the same place for many of the answers to their problems. Obviously, not all mistakes will be anticipated in the modules, but they review many of the problems in compositions. Underlining the mistakes and writing a number is a time-saver for grading each composition.

The advantage can be summed up as follows: the teacher is doing less correction work while the student is doing more, as it should be. If this system works as anticipated, the teacher will be spending less than half an hour correcting a composition of average length. That half an hour should be reduced to 15 minutes or less, as the instructor becomes more proficient in grading with the modules.

Modules Grading Numbers

1. Adjective Position
2. Adverbs in –mente
3. Commands. Familiar Commands (Tú)
4. Commands. Polite Commands (Ud., Uds.)
5. Conditional 1
6. Conditional 2: ThreeTypes of Cond. Sentences
7. Definite Article
8. Direct and Indirect Object Pronouns Together
9. Direct Object Pronouns 1
10. Future Tense
11. Gender of Nouns
12. Gerund 1. Present Progressive.
13. Gerund 2. Gerund as an Adjective.
14. 'Gustar' Verbs 1
15. Hace que trabaja; lleva trabajando
16. Imperfect
17. Indefinite Article
18. Indefinite and Negative Words
19. Indirect Object Pronouns 1
20. Infinitive Reduction
21. Intransitivizing SE (Reflexive Constructions)
22. Neuter Pronouns (lo, esto, aquello…)
23. Nominal, Adjectival, and Adverbial Clauses
24. Numbers 100 to 10,000
25. Passive se + indirect object ('se me' sentences)
26. ¿Pero o sino?
27. 'Personal' a
28. Ponerse, volverse, llegar a ser, hacerse
29. ¿Por or para?
30. Prepositional Pronouns
31. Present Perfect
32. Present Tense 1. Regular verbs
33. Present Tense 2: soy, estoy, voy, doy…
34. Present Tense 3: tengo, vengo, pongo…
35. Present Tense 4: Stem Changing Verbs
36. Preterite 1. Regular Verbs
37. Preterite 2. Irregular and Stem Changing Verbs
38. Preterite and Imperfect 1
39. Preterite and Imperfect 2 (podía/pude, etc.)
40. Punctuation 1. Comma.
41. Punctuation 2: Period; colon; …
42. Question Formation
43. Reflexive Sentences (True Reflexives)
44. Relative Pronouns
45. Restrictive and Non-Restrictive Relative Clauses
46. ¿Saber o conocer?
47. ¿'Ser' or 'estar'? 1.
48. 'Ser' or 'estar' plus Past Participle
49. Subjunctive in Adjectival Clauses
50. Subjunctive in Adverbial Clauses
51. Subjunctive in Nominal Clauses
52. Syllable Division
53. Verb Review. Commands
54. Verb Review. Indicative Mood
55. Verb Review. Subjunctive Mood
56. Verber and Verbed (=Subject, Direct Object)
57. Verber, Verbed, Verbee (=Subject, Direct Object, Indirect Object)
58. Written Accents 1
59. Written Accents 2. (Special cases).
60. Y > e / o > u
61. ¿Ya o todavía?

Additional practice

62. Indirect Objects 2. Practice for 3rd year.
63. Intransitivizing SE 2. Practice for 3rd year
64. Preterite 3. Practice for 1st year college
65. Preterite 4. Practice for 1st year college
66. Preterite and Imperfect 3. Practice
67. Preterite and Imperfect 4. Practice
68. Preterite and Imperfect 5. Practice
69. Ser or estar. Practice for 1st semester college
70. Ser or estar. Practice for 2nd or 3er year
71. Subjunctive Practice for 3rd year college
72. Comparisons of Inequality

Other Symbols

C Concordancia. (Subject/verb; N/Adj/article
A Anglicism. El alcohol carburado es obtenido a
partir de la biomasa > …se obtiene…
O Ortografía (spelling mistake)
P (also ^) Falta una palabra (word missing)
OP Orden de palabras (word order)
PO Parte de la oración (part of speech)
    Un día bien > un día bueno.
    La cultura España > la cultura española.
Prep. Falta una preposición. Ver la clínica.
V. Error de vocabulario.
??: No entiendo esta frase u oración.