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discussions or often failed to participate

opinions and contributed to the group’s discussion

opinions and made major contributions to the group’s discussion

Online Rubrics

For links to online rubrics, go to http://www.calstate.edu/acadaff/sloa/. Many rubrics have been created for use in K-12 education, and they can be adapted for higher education. It’s often easier to adapt a rubric that has already been created than to start from scratch.

Rubrics have many strengths:

Complex products or behaviors can be examined efficiently.

Developing a rubric helps to precisely define faculty expectations.

Well-trained reviewers apply the same criteria and standards.

Rubrics are criterion-referenced, rather than norm-referenced. Raters ask, “Did the student meet the criteria for level 5 of the rubric?” rather than “How well did this student do compared to other students?” This is more compatible with cooperative and collaborative learning environments than competitive grading schemes and is essential when using rubrics for program assessment because you want to learn how well students have met your standards.

Ratings can be done by students to assess their own work, or they can be done by others, e.g., peers, fieldwork supervisions, or faculty.

Rubrics can be useful for grading, as well as assessment.

Rubrics can be useful for grading, as well as assessment. For example, points can be assigned and used for grading, as shown below, and the categories can be used for assessment. Faculty who share an assessment rubric might assign points in different ways, depending on the nature of their courses, and they might decide to add more rows for course-specific criteria or comments.

Notice how this rubric allows faculty, who may not be experts on oral presentation skills, to give detailed formative feedback to students. This feedback describes present skills and indicates what they have to do to improve. Effective rubrics can help faculty reduce the time they spend grading and eliminate the need to repeatedly write the same comments to multiple students.

Analytic Rubric for Grading Oral Presentations

Below Expectation





No apparent organization. Evidence is not used to support assertions.


The presentation has a focus and provides some evidence which supports conclusions.


The presentation is carefully organized and provides convincing evidence to support conclusions.


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