Grade Breakdown

  • Tutorial Attendance + Activity (5%)
  • Competencies Self-Assessments (3%)
  • Public Narrative: Story of Self (1%)
  • Completion of Team Charter (Term 1 + Term 2) (1%)
  • Peer Evaluations (Term 1 + Term 2)

Tutorial Room Attendance + Activity

TAs will record attendance and rate student participation in tutorial rooms, field trips, and other tutorial activities based on the following criteria:

Does Not Meet Expectations

0 - Absent

0.25 – The student is rude, disruptive, distracting; does not arrive prepared

0.5 – The student is physically present but mentally elsewhere; doesn’t contribute to conversation; unclear if student is prepared; often distracted through electronic devices

Meets Minimum Expectations

0.75 – The student is present and paying attention; contributes at least once to class discussion; or participates through hand raising, taking notes, discussing with group members, doing written assignments; Exit Ticket is complete but lacks in-depth response.

Exceeds Expectations

1.0 – The student arrives prepared for class; participates multiple times in class discussion; is responsive to participation and engaged in contributions and comments made by others; contributions are thoughtful and provoke additional comments from others; does not dominate conversation; listens carefully and responds thoughtfully to comments made by others; Exit ticket demonstrates a deep engagement with the topic and how it relates to course content.

Competencies Self-Assessment

You will be sent two survey links in each term to conduct a self-assessment on the following competencies:

Systems Thinking

  • I can identify the boundaries of a system
  • I can identify multiple components in a system
  • I can distinguish between different levels in a system
  • I can recognize how separate components interact to form a whole system
  • I can explain how interactions within a system impact other components of a system


  • I can see the strengths and limitations of different disciplines when addressing complex issues
  • I can seek out and understand terms and concepts from multiple disciplines
  • I can integrate terms and concepts from multiple disciplines to solve complex problems


  • I can work with others to achieve a common goal; I do my share.
  • I can take on roles and responsibilities in a group.
  • I can address conflict when it arises in group work.
  • I can give, receive, and integrate feedback
  • I can reflect on my own and group performance in order to improve your work and learning


  • I can orally present information and ideas to an audience I may not know.
  • I can communicate complex ideas in writing.
  • I can develop clear and attractive digital presentations

Public Narrative: Story of Self

At the beginning of LFS 250, you will be asked to write a 1-2 page Story of Self. The process is useful for helping you articulate and communicate your interests to group members and TA.

Public Narrative, developed by long time civil rights activist, community and labour union organizer turned Harvard professor, Marshall Ganz, for the Obama campaign in 2008, has since become a resource for change-making around the world. Narrative, writes Gantz, is the process "through which individuals, communities, and nations make choices, construct identity, and inspire action. It can both instruct and inspire -- teaching us not only how we ought to act but motivating us to act."

Public narrative is different than one's individual story. "Some of us may think our personal stories don't matter," says Gantz. "On the contrary, if we do public work, we have a responsibility to give a public account of ourselves - where we came from, why we do what we do, and where we think we are going."

Public narrative has three parts: "Story of Self", "Story of Us", and "Story of Now".

Story of Self. Story of Self tells us the key formative experiences which shaped you, "communicating the values that are calling you to act." Story of Self is built around one or two key "choice points", moments of large consequence in your life when you faced a challenge of some kind, made a a choice based on some core values, experienced a consequence, and learned something of basic importance.

Story of Us. Story of Self overlaps with Story of Us. There are many "us's" - family, community, organization, profession, movement, nation. A Story of Us tells the values of some community, long formed or now forming. It helps define a community, comparing and contrasting with other communities. It is about collective identity. Stories of Us that have depth have founding moments, key choices made, challenges faced, defining experiences, outcomes, and lessons learned.

Story of Now. Story of Now locates the community in the larger challenges or threats of our time. An example was Martin Luther King's "I Have a Dream" speech on August 28, 1963. It is important to remeber that King preceded the dream with a nightmare - the failure of America to make good on the "promissory note". to African Americans. He said the March has "the fierce urgency of now" because this debt could no longer be postponed. In Canada, we have many pressing current issues that frame food system related work, such as the Truth and Reconciliation process with Indigenous communities, the prevalence of food insecurity, and ecological harm associated with industrial agriculture practices.

- Adapted with permission from Dennis Donovan, Sabo Center for Democracy and Citizenship, Augsburg University

Team Charter

  • Download the Team Charter template through Canvas

At the beginning of each term, each team will be required to complete a Team Charter. The purpose of the Team Charter is to get to know your group members, figure out ways to mutually contribute that draw on the strengths of individual members, establish a strong working dynamic between all members of the group, and to review as a group the assignment requirements and due dates for group work during each semester. The effort put into the Team Charter and building a strong working relationship will directly translate into your success on group projects. Submit the completed and signed Team Charter to your TA via Canvas for review.

Group Assessments

While group work can be rewarding it can also be unequally shared and a source of resentment. You will be required to rate other group members contribution as well as how your group is working together through two on-line evaluation survey - at the midpoint and end of each term. The midpoint assessment will provide you with an opportunity to give anonymous, constructive feedback to your group members. The end of term evaluation will will be considered by the teaching team when determining the final value of all group work in the course.

By completing the assessments, you have specific criteria to fairly and objectively rate the effectiveness of group members and the group as a whole. Working well in groups is a skill that can be developed over time and these evaluations will help you and your group function efficiently in a collaborative, interdisciplinary setting.

Assessments will be conducted through iPeer ( Login with your CWL to complete the assessment.

Mid Term Peer Feedback

To help your team become more effective, give your teammates some anonymous feedback.
 Consider such things as:

  • Preparation
  • Contribution
  • Gatekeeping
  • Flexibility
  • Were they prepared when they came to class?
 Did they contribute to the team discussion and work? Did they help others contribute?
 Did they listen when disagreements occurred? 

These are anonymous, so be honest.

1. Team Member Name:

Things I appreciate about this team member:

Things I would like to request of this team member:

End of Term - LFC Series Group Multiplier Criteria

Consider the criteria of good group work detailed below to allow you to assess each member in your group.

A score of 100 means that the individual met the expectations of the group. A score below 100 means that the individual did not meet expectations. And, a score between 101-110 indicates that the individual exceeded the expectations for group work this term. For example, if the group received 85% overall on group assignments in Term 1, here is how the group multiplier would affect an individual's grade:

  • Group Multiplier Value of 80 - did not meet expectations - Term 1 Group Grade Value = 85 x 0.80 = 68%
  • Group Multiplier Value of 100 - met expectations - Term 1 Group Grade Value = 85 x 1.0 = 85%
  • Group Multiplier Value of 110 - exceeded expectations - Term 1 Group Grade Value = 85 x 1.10 = 93.5%

Rate performance on the following:

Attendance (20)
Attending lectures and being present in breakout sessions is critical to high-functioning group work. When each member stays informed and current with course material, instructions and activities, less time is devoted to bringing everyone up to speed, leaving more time free to commit to working on assignments and reports.

  • Lectures, Presentations and Discussions (10)
  • Group Meetings (10)

Communication (30)

Effective communication is open and two-way, with discussions that are in-depth with careful listening. When interacting, people are often ‘waiting to speak” rather than listening. Active listening involves paraphrasing or re-stating what has been said in order to verify understanding.

  • Contributing to group dialogue (10)
  • Active listening (10)
  • Non-verbal & Electronic communication (i.e. body language in group setting & prompt replying to emails and other messages) (10)

Support & Feedback (40)

One of the greatest strengths of collaboration is being exposed to diverse perspectives. It is important to let everyone voice his or her opinion. This will allow differences to be acknowledged and result in sound and fair resolutions being reached through discussion. Constructive feedback is information that calls attention to a problem or potential problem. The key to giving constructive feedback is maintaining a spirit of mutual respect and learning.

  • Contribution to group work (20)
  • Respectful of others opinions (10)
  • Constructive feedback (10)

Organization (10)

  • Punctual & Prepared (i.e. on-time for meetings, presentations, other group activities & readings, work, and research reliably completed) (10)

TOTAL: /100 (possibly up to 110)