To get started, download these sample rubrics for grading discussion topics, writing assignments, blogs, journals, wikis, etc. and import them into your course. Here’s how to import a rubric into your Blackboard course:
- On the Control Panel, expand the Course Tools section and select Rubrics.
- To import a rubric, click Import Rubric on the action bar and browse for the file. Click Submit to upload the file.-OR-
- To export a rubric, select the check box next to the rubric’s name and click Export on the action bar, then follow the onscreen instrutions.
You can download and import the file into a different course or share it with other instructors for use in their Blackboard Learn courses. To download any of the rubrics, visit this site and save the files to your workstation.
- Grading Rubric for Blogs – John Graham, User Support at McKendree University, designed this rubric to evaluate student engagement and proficiency in blogging. The attached tool includes criteria such as Completeness, Analysis, Spelling and Timeliness. The levels of achievement are defined as Exemplary, Proficient and Below expectations and are worth 5, 4 and 2 points respectively.
- Grading Rubric for Discussion Boards – Karen Lynden is a Business Instructor, at the Rowan-Cabarrus Community College, whose course won an Exemplary Course Program award. The attached grading rubric for Discussion Boards includes criteria such as Promptness and Initiative, Mechanics of Writing, Relevance of Post, Creating Community and Critical Thinking/Analysis. For those using this for evaluations, the levels of achievement are Below Expectations, Proficient and Exemplary which are worth 0, 1 or 2 points respectively for a potential total of 10 points.
- Grading Rubric for Discussion Forums (Kirk Oda) – This rubric can be found in Texas Woman’s University’s site (http://www.twu.edu/downloads/TLT/discussion-board-rubrics.pdf) and is recommended by Boettcher and Conrad (2010, page 124) in their book: The Online Teaching Survival Guide. According to them, “for some discussion boards, using very simple rubric is a good approach. The primary goal of discussion boards is to get the students engaged. Providing points for assessment in a course is definitely secondary.” Kirk Oda used this rubric in his class. The levels of achievement are Below Expectations, Proficient and Exemplary which are worth 0, 1 or 2 points respectively for a potential total of 2 points.
- Grading Rubric for Discussion Topics – Michele M. Pelter, RN, PhD is an Assistant Professor at the University of Nevada, Reno – Orvis School of Nursing who authored the course, “Introduction to Knowledge Development and Scientific Inquiry”. Her work was also honored in the Blackboard Exemplary Course Program in 2011. The attached rubric is used for grading student participation in discussion boards and includes criteria such as Responsiveness, Communication, Interaction, Critical Thinking and Analysis, and Mechanics. The levels of achievement are defined as Failing, Average, Good and Exceptional and are worth .5, 1, 1.5, and 2 points respectively for a potential total of 10 points.
- Grading Rubric for Event Proposal – Glaucio Scremin is an Assistant Professor, in the Department of Health, Physical Education and Recreation, at the Jacksonville State University. The attached rubric can be used to evaluate an event proposal, and, in particular, judges criteria such as the Executive Summary, Revenue Generation Strategies, Promotional Plan and more. The levels of achievement are defined as Poor, Fair, Good and Excellent for a potential total of 100 points.
- Grading Rubric for Writing Assignments – Karen Lynden is a Business Instructor, at the Rowan-Cabarrus Community College, whose course won an Exemplary Course Program award. This grading rubric for Discussion Boards includes criteria such as Reasoning and Analysis, Focus, Accuracy of Facts and Citations, MLA, and Mechanics/Organization. The levels of achievement are Below Expectations, Proficient and Exemplary which are worth 0, 1 or 2 points respectively for a potential total of 10 points.
- Grading Rubric for Written Assignments (Kirk Oda) – Kirk Oda simplified Lynden’s rubric posted above for use in his own class. This grading rubric for the Written Assignments includes criteria such as Reasoning and Analysis, Focus, and Mechanics/Organization/Citations. The levels of achievement are Below Expectations, Proficient and Exemplary which are worth 0, 0.5 or 1 point respectively for a potential total of 3 points.
- Lesson Plan & Transcript Rubric for ITAs Anastassia Tzoytzoyrakos) – This is a sample rubric to evaluate lesson planning and lesson transcripts. Rubric includes criteria such as Lesson Organization, Linguistic Functions, Activities, and Theoretical Explanations. The levels of achievement are defined as Needs Improvement, Satisfactory and Proficient. Note that the category of Linguistic Function is weighted more since this is an assignment for International Teaching Assistants preparing to teach a lesson. Anastassia Tzoytzoyrakos
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Creating grading rubrics for writing assignments
Establishing and discussing specific characteristics of success when an assignment is first distributed benefits both students and instructors. Creating grading rubrics, or grids, is a typical way to do this. Having received the criteria with an assignment, students are able to write toward specific goals. Later, when they look at their grades, they can see at a glance the strengths and weaknesses of their work. Instructors are able to grade according to customized descriptive criteria that reflect the intention of a specific assignment and won't change according to the hour of night or the amount of effort a particular student is suspected of expending. Rubrics can also save on grading time, as they allow instructors to detail comments on one or two elements and simply indicate ratings on others. Finally, grading rubrics are invaluable in courses that involve more than one instructor, as in team-taught or multi-sectioned courses, because they ensure that all instructors are measuring work by the same standards.
Step one: identifying criteria
The first step involved in creating assignment-specific rubrics is revisiting an assignment's intended outcomes. These objectives can be considered, prioritized, and reworded to create a rubric's criteria. If, for example, an instructor assigns a literature review hoping that students might become skilled at reducing complex texts down to pithy summaries, "concise summary" can be one of the grading criteria included in the rubric.
Care must be taken to keep the list of criteria from becoming unwieldy; ten ranked items is usually the upper limit. In addition, to be usefully translated and used by students, criteria should be specific and descriptive. Criteria like "clear," "organized," and "interesting" don't mean much to students when they sit down to revise.
Step two: weighing criteria
When criteria have been identified, decisions are made about their varying importance. Say, for example, that an essay is assigned by a geography professor who intends for students to become skilled at creating concrete and accurate observation-based descriptions, practiced in analyzing their data and in devising a land-use proposal, and able to create correctly-formatted, error-free prose. When creating a grading rubric for that assignment, the instructor will need to decide on the relative weight of each criterion. Is the error-free prose objective equal to the analysis objective?
Step three: describing levels of success
When the criteria have been set, decisions must be made about an assessment scale. Many instructors like to limit this section of the rubric to a three-point scale ("weak," "satisfactory," "strong"). Others may prefer to break this down into five or six levels, adding categories like "needs extensive revision," or "outstanding."
Step four: creating and distributing the grid
When the specific criteria and levels of success have been named and ranked, they can be sorted into a table (see samples below) and distributed with the assignment. Note that spaces are created for comments on each item and again at the end.
|Insights and ideas that are germane to the assignment|
|Address of target audience|
|Choices and uses of evidence|
|Logic of organization and use of prescribed formats|
|Integration of source materials|
|Grammar and mechanics|
|Final Grade ____|
1=not present 2=needs extensive revision 3=satisfactory 4=strong 5=outstanding
|Insights and ideas||1||2||3||4||5|
|Address of target audience||1||2||3||4||5|
|Organization and use of prescribed formats||1||2||3||4||5|
|Integration of source materials||1||2||3||4||5|
|Grammar and mechanics||1||2||3||4||5|
|Final Grade ____|