Dear Miss Conceptions,
I am interested in providing choice in assessments for my students. I want to get away from exams, and assessing outcomes âin writingâ, but how am I supposed to make 6 rubrics to go with all of the choice I am giving?
Dear Wannatry Guy,
First of all, I want to say that I am happy that you are getting away from writing tasks in your subject area. Jennifer Katz has always discussed the importance of recognizing that most outcomes donât say, âin writingâ at the end, and that we should be assessing student understanding rather than their ability to write (aside from the language courses). Now that you are reflecting student needs in the assessment choices you offer, your students can show you what they know in a format that makes sense to them.
Big Rocks/Essential Understandings
In order to build a tool that we can use regardless of what product the student chooses to complete, we need to ensure that our measurement criteria are focused on what level of understanding the student demonstrates. The other important point is that we focus our rubric on the âbig rocksâ when selecting our outcomes.
Identify a proficient level of understanding first
Building the language for a proficient level, where we want most of our students, and then identifying what the levels both up and down from that can be the most efficient. A document from the AAC that can be helpful for generating words is found below:
Jennifer Katz has built rubrics for each content-specific area that you may want to look at as exemplars. For example, if the âbig rockâ idea is âAboriginal, French and British peoples had diverse social and economic structuresâ, then the 4 levels of understanding might look as follows:
- Jennifer Katz
Add content-specific measures if required.
If we stick to a rubric that focuses on student progression through the outcomes, we essentially disregard the presentation through the product. In areas where student ability to communicate, or clarity of discussion needs to be assessed, a row can be added to the bottom of the rubric. It may look something like the following:
Or, in a science course, content-specific language use is assessed as follows:
Lastly, remember that a good rubric undergoes many revisions to be a working tool for you and your students. It is always important to ask yourself if the tool you are using to assess your students will help them understand how to improve/increase their learning.Christine Quong
This blog and resources website has been developed through the work of various AISI coaches in PHRD. The lead collaborative teachers for the 2015/2016 school year, Cheryl Frose, Christine Quong and Tammy Tkachuk will continue to update this site. If you have resources you would like to share or would like to contribute to the blog, please contact us.
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 2.5 Canada License.