I recently finished a marathon of grading portfolios, and grading revised portfolios for my students. It’s a stressful and busy time, but the one thing I’m very happy about may be the way that my usage of holistic rubrics allows us to focus this grading focus on student growth in reading, writing and thinking.
A few years ago I used analytical rubrics.
These are the rubrics that function similar to a checklist, where students will get 10 points for his or her thesis statement, and then get 7 points due to their use of evidence. A holistic rubric however, generally describes pay someone to write my paper what an item (such as an essay, analysis paragraph etc.)
looks like at each and every level, similar to this example from my “Analysis Writing” rubric:
- Student identifies details that are strongly related the written text overall 1 and that clearly connect with one another, although the connection might be less interesting or clear than at the Honor Roll level.
- Student accurately describes the device( that is literary) (aka “writer’s moves”) discussed
- Student clearly and accurately describes an essential idea through the text overall 1 , although the >may not be a nuanced interpretation. However, the interpretation continues to be abstract, although not clichйd.
- Student cites ev >attempts to use us in the most way that is useful
- Student completely explains the connections between details (ev >attempting to make use of words that are signal describe relationships between ideas
Although the bullet points make this rubric look a little more “analytical,” the stark reality is that i personally use it in holistic way. We have just discovered that students fine it better to grasp a rubric that is broken up into pieces, instead of two long and complex sentences that describe simply the idea that is same.
After using these rubrics for two years (with a few minor revisions in language) I have seen them help students grow far more than my analytical rubrics ever did, and even though I don’t spend time that is much” the rubrics to my students. The following is why I’m now such an admirer among these holistic rubrics and the way they are now facilitating the improvement of student writing in place of simply recording it.
1) Feedback, not grades, could be the goal. Holistic rubrics support this. Through the majority of a term I give students within my class a lot of feedback on the writing and feedback that is minimal grades. They are able to get a 100 out of 100 for simply completing an essay, even in the event it still needs a lot of development. Because my rubric is holistic and linked with terms like “Meet Expectations” in place of giving points for different parts of the writing, it really is easier for students to know how their first draft needs substantial revision in order to “meet expectations” and even though their completion grade (which uses points instead) is 100/100.
2) Good writing and mediocre writing can receive the same score on an analytical rubric. I’ve run into this issue some time time again.When I used analytical rubrics to grade essays I often discovered that simple, formulaic writing with a 1-sentence thesis statement and some basic evidence with some little bit of explanation often received the same point value as writing where in fact the student made a more nuanced point, or used more interesting evidence that connected to the thesis in interesting ways, or even more important developed from the beginning into the end. Often this was considering that the categories I measured were actually just areas of the essay: one category for thesis statement, one category for evidence, one category for reasoning, etc. Along with these parts separated there was clearly no way that is good of how well the writing flowed or was created. In addition it meant there was no way that is good my analytical rubric there was no great way to recapture how students were taking chances, and important part of writing development.
3) Holistic rubrics are just better at assessing the method in which the components of an essay work together. As soon as the essay that is wholeor any written piece) is described together it became easier in my situation to parse out the thing that was strong and weak about student writing. Take a example that is recent I became giving students feedback about a fairly standard essay concerning the memoir Night. They needed to move up ion the rubric, I quickly realized that their reasoning and explanation of their evidence needed more work as I was reading student essays and considering what feedback. More specifically, students were basically paraphrasing their evidence in the place of actually explaining how it supported their thesis. I would have thought this was an isolated problem in the “reasoning” section when I used to use analytical rubrics. However, I realized that part of the reason the student reasoning was lacking was because their thesis statements were overly simplistic because I was using a holistic rubric and looking at the essay more as a whole. When you yourself have an overly simplistic, obvious thesis statement it really is difficult to develop interesting reasoning because, really, what was their interesting to say? by way of this holistic view I became in a position to give students feedback that helped them develop a stronger thesis and then revise their reasoning accordingly.
4) last but most certainly not least, holistic rubrics make grading simpler and faster. There are far fewer decisions which will make about a student grade when they get one overall score as opposed to five or seven different scores for every element of a writing piece. Fewer decisions means faster grading. While i might like to tell you this faster grading leaves me with increased time for personal pursuits, the truth is it simply leaves more time for giving more meaningful feedback, focus on trends I see in student writing by class, etc. While I might never be in a position to escape work, i will be capable of making work more meaningful, plus it certainly really helps to make grading fun and enriching.