In order for students to develop mastery in a particular field, there are many component skills they will need to gain in order to be successful. Therefore it can be particularly useful to spend time identifying those component skills and developing assignments or activities that aid students in developing those skills. This process can broadly be referred to as providing scaffolding for your course content.
Scaffolding Student Learning: Tips for Getting Started
This provides a basic overview of what scaffolding is and highlights the importance of making component skills explicit for students. Also see the links to sample assignments at the bottom of the article.
Tomorrow's Professor Msg.#849 Supporting Student Success Through Scaffolding
This posting below at five scaffolding strategies to help novice learners: Procedural Guidelines, Partial Solutions, Think-Alouds, Anticipating Student Errors, and Comprehension Checks.
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