Publication Date: 2003-06-00
Author: Moskal, Barbara M
Source: ERIC Clearinghouse on Assessment and Evaluation
Developing Classroom Performance Assessments and Scoring Rubrics - Part II. ERIC Digest.
A difficulty that is faced in the use of performance assessments is determining how the students' responses will be scored. Scoring rubrics provide one mechanism for scoring student responses to a variety of different types of performance assessments. This two-part Digest draws from the current literature and the author's experience to identify suggestions for developing performance assessments and their accompanying scoring rubrics.
This Digest addresses 1) Developing Scoring Rubrics, 2) Administering
Performance Assessments and 3) Scoring, Interpreting and Using Results.
Another Digest addresses Writing Goals and Objectives, and Developing Performance
Assessments. These categories guide the reader through the four phases
of the classroom
DEVELOPING SCORING RUBRICS
Scoring rubrics are one method that may be used to evaluatestudents'
Recommendations for developing scoring rubrics:
1. The criteria set forth within a scoring rubric should beclearly aligned
Moskal (2000b) have both described the differences between analytic and holistic scoring rubrics and how to develop each type of rubric. Books have also been written or compiled (e.g., Arter & McTighe, 2001; Boston, 2002) that provide detailed examinations of the rubric development process and the different types of scoring rubrics.
ADMINISTERING PERFORMANCE ASSESSMENTS
Once a performance assessment and its accompanying scoring rubric are developed, it is time to administer the assessment to students. The recommendations that follow are specifically developed to guide the administration process.
Recommendations for administering performance assessments:
1. Both written and oral explanations of tasks should be clear and concise
2. Appropriate tools need to be available to support the completion of the assessment activity. Depending on the activity, students may need access to library resources, computer programs, laboratories, calculators, or other tools. Before the task is administered, the teacher should determine what tools will be needed and ensure that these tools are available during the task administration.
3. Scoring rubrics should be discussed with the students before they
The first two recommendations provided above are appropriate well beyond the use of performance assessments and scoring rubrics. These recommendations are consistent with the Standards of the American Educational Research Association, American Psychological Association & National Council on Measurement in Education (1999) with respect to assessment and evaluation. The final recommendation is consistent with prior articles that concern the development of scoring rubrics (Brualdi, 1998; Moskal & Leydens, 2000).
SCORING, INTERPRETING AND USING RESULTS
As was discussed earlier, a scoring rubric may be used to score student responses to performance assessments. This section provides recommendations for scoring, interpreting and using the results of performance assessments.
Recommendations for scoring, interpreting and using results of performance
1. Two independent raters should be able to acquire consistent scores
2. A given rater should be able to acquire consistent scores across
time using the
3. A set of anchor papers should be used to assist raters in the scoring process. Anchor papers are student papers that have been selected as examples of performances at the different levels of the scoring rubric. These papers provide a comparison set for raters as they score the student responses. Raters should frequently refer to these papers to ensure the consistency of scoring over time.
4. A set of anchor papers with students' names removed can be used to
5. The connection between the score or grade and the scoring rubric
6. The results of the performance assessment should be used to improve
How can this be used to improve future classroom instruction? What did
The first three recommendations concern the important concept of "rater reliability" or the consistency between scores. Moskal and Leydens (2000) examine the concept of rater reliability in an article that was previously published in this journal. A more comprehensive source that addresses both validity and reliability of scoring rubrics is a book by Arter and McTighe (2001), Scoring Rubrics in the Classroom: Using Performance Criteria for Assessing and Improving Student Performance. The American Educational Research Association, American Psychological Association and National Council of Measurement in Education (1999) also address these issues in their Standards document. For information concerning methods for converting rubric scores to grades, see "Converting Rubric Scores to Letter Grades" (Northwest Regional Educational Laboratory, 2001).
The purpose of this article is to provide a set of recommendations for the development of performance assessments and scoring rubrics. These recommendations can be used to guide a teacher through the four phases of classroom assessment, planning, gathering, interpreting and using. Extensive literature is available on each phase of the assessment process and this article addresses only a small sample of that work. The reader is encouraged to use the previously cited work as a starting place to better understand the use of performance assessments and scoring rubrics in the classroom.
This article was originally developed as part of a National Science Foundation (NSF) grant (EEC 0230702), Engineering Our World. The opinions and ideas expressed in this article are that of the author and not of the NSF.
Boston, C. (Eds.). (2002). Understanding Scoring Rubrics. University of Maryland, MD: ERIC Clearinghouse on Assessment and Evaluation.
Brualdi, A. (1998). "Implementing performance assessment in the classroom."
Practical Assessment, Research & Evaluation, 6(2) [On-line]. Available:
Mertler, C. A. (2001). "Designing scoring rubrics for your classroom."
Moskal, B. (2000a) "An Assessment Model for the Mathematics Classroom."
Moskal, B. (2000b). "Scoring Rubrics: What, When and How?" Practical
Assessment, Research & Evaluation, 7(3) [On-line]. Available:
Northwest Regional Educational Laboratory (2002). "Converting Rubric Scores to Letter Grades." In C. Boston's (Eds.), Understanding Scoring Rubrics (pp. 34-40). University of Maryland, MD: ERIC Clearinghouse on Assessment and Evaluation.
Perlman, C. (2002). "An Introduction to Performance Assessment Scoring Rubrics". In C. Boston's (Eds.), Understanding Scoring Rubrics (pp. 5-13). University of Maryland, MD: ERIC Clearinghouse on Assessment and Evaluation.
Rogers, G. & Sando, J. (1996). Stepping Ahead: An Assessment Plan Development Guide. Terra Haute, Indiana: Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology.
Wiggins, G. (1990). "The case for authentic assessment." Practical Assessment,
Wiggins, G. (1993). Assessing Student Performances. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass
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