August 12, 2024

# What is a Rubric?

A rubric is a scoring guide that enables the teacher to make reliable judgments about students’ work and allows students to self-assess.

## Elements of rubric

• Criteria
• Level of performance
• Description

## Criteria

• It is one or more traits or dimensions that serve as the basis for judging the student’s response.
• Definitions and examples to clarify the meaning of each trait or dimension.

## Level of performance

A scale of values on which to rate each dimension

## Descriptors

Spell out what is expected of students at each level of performance for each criterion

## Guidelines for developing rubrics

• Identify the qualities and attributes that the teacher wishes to observe in students’ outputs that would demonstrate their level of proficiency.
• Decide what type of rubric to use, whether analytical or holistic.
• Identify and define the standards of excellence for the lowest level of performance.
• Test whether the scoring rubrics is ‘reliable’ by asking two or more teachers to score the same set of projects of outputs and correlate their individual assessments.

## Tips for developing rubrics

• Talk with colleagues
• Gather sample rubrics
• Keep it short and simple (ideally, the entire rubric should fit on one sheet of paper)
• Each rubric item should focus on a different skill
• Focus on how students develop and express their learning
• Begin with describing the highest (or lowest) level
• Avoid odd numbers in the rating scale

## Criterion-based Performance Lists

• List the criteria, elements, or traits of a performance
• May have point values assigned to each item on the list
• Do not contain a detailed description of the performance levels
• May be judged using Yes or No

### Example: What is a Rubric

You are a restaurant critic who has been assigned the task of evaluating your waitperson.  With a partner (or as a group) design a checklist of qualities upon which you would judge a waitperson’s performance.

Criterion-based Performance Checklist

## Holistic Rubric

• Provides an overall impression of a student’s work
• Yields a single score for a product or performance
• Is well-suited to judging simple products or performances
• Does not provide a detailed analysis of the strengths and weaknesses

Example: a case

The editor of the restaurant magazine is not satisfied with the checklist and has asked you to create a holistic rubric with which to give the waitperson a score from 3 to 1.  Take the criterion-based performance checklist and use it to help you determine the levels in your holistic rubric.

## Analytic-Trait Rubric

• Divide the product or performance into distinct traits and judge each separately
• Is better suited to judging complex performances involving several dimensions
• Provide more specific information or feedback
• Helps students better understand what quality of work is expected.
• Is more time-consuming to learn and apply

Example: a case

After seeing your evaluation of his wait staff in the magazine, the owner of the restaurant asks you to design an analytic-trait rubric by which he can assess his people.  Use the information from your checklist and from your holistic rubric to create this assessment.

# Remember

The rubric that you choose to use must assess what you set out to assess.

Align your goals and your assessment for a true picture of what the student can do.

Show the rubric to the students BEFORE they start to work on the product or performance.