Perusall helps you master readings faster, understand the material better, and get more out of your classes. To achieve this goal, you will be collaboratively annotating the textbook with others in your class. The help you’ll get and provide your classmates (even if you don’t know anyone personally) will get you past confusions quickly and will make the process more fun. While you read, you’ll receive rapid answers to your questions, help others resolve their questions (which also helps you learn), and advise the instructor how to make class time most productive. You can start a new annotation thread in Perusall by highlighting text, asking a question, or posting a comment; you can also add a reply or comment to an existing thread. Each thread is like a chat with one or more members of your class, and it happens in real time. Your goals in annotating each reading assignment are to stimulate discussion by posting good questions or comments and to help others by answering their questions.

Research shows that by annotating thoughtfully, you’ll learn more and get better grades, so here’s what “annotating thoughtfully” means: Effective annotations deeply engage points in the readings, stimulate discussion, offer informative questions or comments, and help others by addressing their questions or confusions. To help you connect with classmates, you can “mention” a classmate in a comment or question to have them notified by email (they’ll also see a notification immediately if online), and you’ll also be notified when your classmates respond to your questions.

For each assignment we will evaluate the annotations you submit on time (see below). Based on the overall quality and quantity of your annotations, you will receive a score for each assignment on a scale determined by your instructor. 

What does “on time” mean?

The work done in class depends on you having done the reading in advance, so it is necessary to complete the reading and post your annotations before the deadline to receive credit. Your instructor may choose to allow a late annotation period during which the credit for your annotations linearly decreases from 100% at the deadline to 0% at the end of the late annotation period.

To encourage discourse, your instructor may also provide a reply window after each deadline during which you can continue to reply, for full credit, to questions posted by others. However, the number of additional points you can earn during the post-deadline reply window is capped at the credit you receive for annotations made on that assignment before the deadline.