Barb Wilkins, Instructional Technologist for EdTech and a math teacher in her own right, presented on using rubrics for courses. One of the points Barb made was that students are already quite familiar with the use of rubrics for evaluating performance. For the past 10 years or so, teachers in K-12 have been trained to use rubrics, especially when evaluating subjective content (e.g. essays, papers, and group projects). Using a rubric gives students a good idea of the criteria that will be used in their evaluation. Assuming they meet all of the highest criteria, then they should be able to demonstrate mastery of the subject matter.
Barb showed how rubrics can be used inside of Blackboard to grade students’ performance in wikis, blogs, and discussion boards, which are often very subjective. By providing students with a guideline on what constitutes the “best” contribution in each of these areas, you can often see quite an improvement in student learning outcomes–they are motivated to do better when they can more clearly see your expectations.
Several references to periodicals are made within the presentation for anyone interested in finding out more about using rubrics.
Barb’s presentation was made using Prezi, and is publicly available at: