An Empathetic Approach to Writing Rubrics

“Response shows a complete lack of understanding.”
“Piece had no style or voice.”
“Position is incoherent.”
“Thesis is utterly incompetent.”

This is some of the discouraging feedback that we found in an interdisciplinary, cross-institutional survey of assessment rubrics that we collected from online

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Rubrics: Defining Features

Twenty years ago, many faculty didn’t know what rubrics were, but today they are well known and widely used, both in practice and research. And like many other instructional innovations, they have come to be used and defined differently. Dawson (2017) aspires to sort through

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online courses

Rubric Options for an Online Class

Athletes are often “graded out” by their coaches after a game, and they always know ahead of time the exact criteria that will be used to grade them. An offensive lineman knows that he will be graded on the number of sacks allowed, missed blocks,

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Reenvisioning Rubrics

Reenvisioning Rubrics: A Few Brief Suggestions

Linda Suskie’s Assessing Student Learning documents a wide variety of common assessment errors. They result from the subjective nature of grades in all but the most factual subjects. Many failures point to the need for more objectivity and a better system of accountability, including leniency,

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Involving Students in Rubric Creation Using Google Docs

Involving Students in Rubric Creation Using Google Docs

Wide consensus confirms the usefulness of rubrics. For instructors, rubrics expedite grading with standards; at the same time, they reinforce learning objectives and standardize course curricula. For students, rubrics provide formative guidelines for assignments while—ideally—spurring reflection and self-assessment.

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Rubrics for Teachers

The Value of Rubrics for Teachers

Rubrics clarify assignment details for students. They provide an operational answer to the frequently asked student question, “What do you want in this assignment?” They make grading more transparent and can be used to help students develop those all-important self-assessment skills. For teachers, rubrics expedite

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A Case Where Rubrics Worked!

Teachers are giving students rubrics to help improve the quality of their work, but do they? Does student work, say, writing a paper, improve when students are given the criteria that will be used to assess their work? Kathleen Greenberg notes in her article that

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Exploring the advantages of rubrics

Exploring the Advantages of Rubrics

“I don’t believe in giving students rubrics,” a faculty member told me recently. “They’re another example of something that waters down education.” I was telling him about a study I’d just read that documented some significant improvement in student papers when students used a detailed

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Rubrics: Only for Grading

Rubrics: Only for Grading?

That’s what they were first developed for (clear back in the ’70s, would you believe), and in the beginning they were used to assess written work. Now teachers are finding them useful in assessing a wide range of classroom activities and assignments: oral presentations, Web

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