Rubric-Style Grading

31 May

Last year, my fellow math teachers and I used a 5 point grading scale: 4, 3.5, 3, 2, 1. These were the only 5 options for a student to receive on an assessment. I’m thinking about switching next year to a new 5 point scale: 4, 3, 2, 1, 0 or 5,4,3,2,1 but allow students to receive intermittent scores of 3.5, 2.5, 1.5, 0.5 or 4.5, 3.5, 2.5, 1.5, so my fellow teachers and I have the option of assigning 9 different scores rather than just 5. This thought comes out of reading Marzano’s Transforming Classroom Grading. According to his research, using these intermittent scores increases accuracy in providing grades that truly reflect levels of student understanding. At this point I’m not sure which breakdown I like better or why.


Posted by on May 31, 2010 in education



2 responses to “Rubric-Style Grading

  1. Matt Townsley

    June 1, 2010 at 12:25 am

    My thoughts on the grading scale dilemma: fewer score points = more consistent results. If 25 math teachers were in a room and charged to grade your students’ work, they would be much more agreeable with the 0-5 scale rather than the 9 point (using half points) scale. Why? Math tells us so. There’s subjectivity in grading, even in standards-based grading…so no matter how hard you (or I) try, we will mull over score points. Should this be a 3 or 3.5? or maybe it’s a 2.5? Easy…it’s a 3.

    If you’re worried about correlating the scores to percentages or students feeling like they either get a 3 or a 4 rather than a 3.5, create a system for them to improve their scores. I try to score as consistently as I can, but feel better knowing that if students aren’t happy, they can always show me that they’re better causing a change in the grade book.

    Any of this make sense?

    • jalzen

      June 2, 2010 at 12:57 am

      Yes, that all makes sense. I got the idea from reading Marzano’s book. When I ran it by my teachers today, one teacher said “oh, I did that on my own last year, but honestly it wasn’t needed most of the time.” That was good to hear. I myself really only felt that way on occasion as well, but I wanted to share what I read. I’m still mulling over all of this, and will be posting a discussion about quizzes and tests later in the week. Thanks for the input though! I always appreciate what you have to say. One of my “to-do’s” this summer is to read the archives of your blog. Some of it got skipped over in the busyness of this year, and I want to re-think some things.


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