Offering Honors Contracts in Elementary Chinese II
By Dr. Jenny (Maan) Lin, Foreign Languages Department
Participating in the honors contract is a great opportunity for students to shine. I have been offering honors contracts to outstanding students in LC 112 (Elementary Chinese II) since spring 2006. I find that the honors contract motivates students to learn more and to excel. I have noticed that while most students welcome the challenge, some students need encouragement and convincing that they can do it. As a rule, those students who need convincing in the beginning feel particularly proud at the end when they have accomplished the contract. Students devote much time and energy to completing their projects: from working on their drafts to developing presentations for the Honors Conference. The honors contract gives me the opportunity to support and mentor these excellent students through that process, thus enhancing my interaction with them outside of the class. This hard work culminates in the Honors Conference, the most exciting part for me, since I see my students give their presentations in Mandarin. The honors contract experience is as rewarding and positive for me as it is for my students.