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Making the Grade:. How to Evaluate Student Papers Fairly and Consistently. What is the Best Way to Grade Fairly and Consistently?. No, No, No. What Do Students Want?. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=93J_0Qxsci4. How Do I Begin?. Decide the value of the evaluation. How Do I Begin?.

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making the grade

Making the Grade:

How to Evaluate Student Papers Fairly and Consistently

what do students want
What Do Students Want?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=93J_0Qxsci4

how do i begin
How Do I Begin?

Decide the value of the evaluation

how do i begin6
How Do I Begin?

Decide the value of the evaluation

Will students have a chance to revise?

how do i begin7
How Do I Begin?

Decide the value of the evaluation

Will students have a chance to revise?

If so, make extensive comments on drafts and use formulative rubrics.

how do i begin8
How Do I Begin?

Decide the value of the evaluation

Will students have a chance to revise?

If so, make extensive comments on drafts and use formulative rubrics.

If not, make focused, but few comments and use summative rubrics.

how do i begin9
How Do I Begin?

When will you return the graded papers?

a. Before the last day of class?

b. At the final exam?

c. After the semester is over?

how do i begin10
How Do I Begin?

What do you want students to do with your comments?

how do i begin11
How Do I Begin?
  • Will students have a chance to revise?
  • If not, consider having 2 deadlines for the paper:
  • A week early– you will make in-depth comments
  • A week later—few if any comments beyond the rubric; but students may NOT argue the grade
how do i begin12
How Do I Begin?

Decide the value of the evaluation

Is this a high- or low-stake assignment?

how do i begin13
How Do I Begin?

Consider reading student papers all the way through before marking the rubric or making comments

how do i begin14
How Do I Begin?

Consider reading student papers all the way through before marking the rubric or making comments

Why?

how do i begin15
How Do I Begin?

After reading the student’s paper, decide on 3 main points to make

how do i begin16
How Do I Begin?

How do I decide what is most important?

how do i begin17
How Do I Begin?

How do I decide what is most important?

Use Beth’s 7 levels of evaluating student papers

how do i begin18
How Do I Begin?
  • Include no more than 3 comments per page
  • Praise
  • Briefly summarize student’s good points and areas that need work
help students understand your grading criteria
Help Students Understand your Grading Criteria

One way to help students understand how you will evaluate their work is to prepare an annotated sample of student work

help students understand your grading criteria20
Help Students Understand your Grading Criteria

Prepare an annotated sample of student work

Discuss the annotated sample in class

help students understand your grading criteria21
Help Students Understand your Grading Criteria

Prepare an annotated sample of student work

Discuss the annotated sample in class

Post the annotated sample for students to use as a reference

help students understand your grading criteria22
Help Students Understand your Grading Criteria

Another way to evaluate student papers consistently and fairly is by creating rubrics.

create rubrics
Create Rubrics

Holistic Rubric:

A grading sheet that considers the work as a whole

Analytic Rubric:

A grading sheet that breaks down the assignment into parts and sometimes assigns each part a certain number of points or a percentage of the grade

slide25

Writing Assignment 2A

Additional Comments and/or Suggestions:

using rubrics effectively
Using Rubrics Effectively
  • Consider eliminating point totals from rubrics
using rubrics effectively27
Using Rubrics Effectively
  • Make more comments on drafts than on final papers that cannot be revised
  • Consider using analytical rubrics for drafts and a holistic rubric for the final paper
evaluating student papers
Evaluating Student Papers
  • The fair and consistent evaluation of student papers begins with the creation of the writing prompt.
evaluating student papers29
Evaluating Student Papers
  • The fair and consistent evaluation of student papers begins with the creation of the writing prompt.
  • The evaluation must be aligned with the prompt and with in-class explanations.
commenting on student papers
Commenting on Student Papers

Make Helpful Comments

  • Focus more on global issues than local
  • Be respectful, challenging, and specific
align your comments with your rubrics
Align Your Comments with Your Rubrics

Do the comments you have made on the student’s paper reflect the grades you marked on the rubric?

align your comments with your rubrics32
Align Your Comments with Your Rubrics

For example, on the rubric do you indicate the most serious problem is the thesis?

Yet, do your marks on the student’s paper suggest that grammar and punctuation were far more of a problem?

begin your comments with praise
Begin Your Comments with Praise

Build student confidence before offering suggestions for improvement

commenting on student papers34
Commenting on Student Papers

It might be tempting to begin editing the paper, but this isn’t helpful for the student.

Though it isn’t the most “obvious” guidance, the student first needs guidance on structure, organization, and content.

commenting on student papers35
Commenting on Student Papers

Then, simply comment at the end of the paper that the student will also need to do some major editing after the final revisions have been made.

focus on global issues
Focus on Global Issues

Look at the focus, structure, support, paragraphing. What is the thesis statement?

  • Does it explain what the reader will be arguing?
  • Does it indicate what the main ideas of the paper will be, those that might correspond to the major headings?
be selective make only 2 3 comments page
Be Selective; Make only 2-3 Comments/Page
  • Provide needed guidance without taking away students’ authority over the paper
  • Be specific!
  • Limit comments on correctness and style
restrict comments don t expect perfection choose what matters to you
Restrict Comments: Don’t expect perfection – choose what matters to you

Don’t waste time making comments on papers that are irrelevant to your criteria

commenting on student papers39
Commenting on Student Papers

Does the paper have so many problems that you would have to write a great deal to guide the student?

commenting on student papers40
Commenting on Student Papers

Does the paper have so many problems that you would have to write a great deal to guide the student?

  • Instead of making any comments, simply invite the student to your office and explain that you won’t give the student a grade on the paper until it has been revised and edited thoroughly
commenting on student papers41
Commenting on Student Papers

Is the comment necessary?

Is the same information already on the rubric?

time saving tips
Time-Saving Tips
  • Remember less is more; limit your comments to what matters most.
  • Do not use comments to “justify” your grades; use them to help the student become a better writer
studies of student paper evaluations
Studies of Student Paper Evaluations

Students often do not understand our comments:

Study reveals percentage of students who typically understand faculty comments:

  • 54 percent of students assessed were very fairly confident
  • only 5 percent were very confident
  • 40 percent said they did not understand what the comment meant
studies of student paper evaluations46
Studies of Student Paper Evaluations
  • Students in two studies wanted both positive and negative feedback.
  • For example, “I want to know what I did correctly on my papers, not just what I did wrong” generated a mean response of 4.49 (out of 5.0).
studies of student paper evaluations47
Studies of Student Paper Evaluations
  • Negative feedback tended to be more specific than positive feedback
  • When offered, positive comments tended to be vague, such as the word “good” scrawled down the side of a paper.
check your consistency in grading
Check Your Consistency in Grading

1) Re-grade the first paper or 2 after you have graded all of the other papers.

2) Randomly look at your comments and graded rubric.

3) Compare some of the papers that have similar scores.

help students understand your completed evaluations
Help Students Understand Your Completed Evaluations
  • Post the rubric again on the day you return the papers and comment in general about the papers
  • e.g., “Most students had a clear thesis that guided the organization of the paper”
  • “Some common problems included failing to provide evidence for some of the claims”
  • “Many of the papers included too many quotations instead of evidence that the author synthesized the content and actually has an opinion on it”
help students use your evaluation effectively
Help Students Use Your Evaluation Effectively
  • If you have required drafts of the paper, have students write a memo telling you explicitly what changes they will make and why
  • When students are required to do drafts, be sure to have them return those marked drafts with your comments when they submit the final paper
  • Or have students explain how they have responded to each comment you made on the draft
make certain that students read your comments
Make Certain that Students Read Your Comments
  • Final exam reflection
  • Final 10 points of the paper’s total = reflection
  • Memo listing how students would address your comments in a next version
revising your rubrics
Revising Your Rubrics
  • Assign students to revise the assignment prompt and/or rubrics
remember
Remember:

Your role is not simply to attach a numerical score on a student’s paper –

it is to help students become better writers!