Office of Assessment and Accreditation


A rubric is a scoring tool that explicitly describes the instructor’s performance expectations for an assignment or piece of work. A rubric contains the evaluation criteria, scaled performance levels, and the relative descriptors of each criteria at each level. Rubrics can be used to provide feedback to students on diverse types of assignments, from papers, projects, and oral presentations to artistic performances and group projects.

They can be great tools for assessing student work for several reasons:

  • You find yourself re-writing the same comments on student assignments.
  • Your grading load is heavy and writing comments takes a lot of your time.
  • Students ask the same questions about assignment requirements, even after you’ve returned it.
  • You want to point out some specific elements an assignment.
  • You find yourself wondering if you are grading or commenting equitably at the beginning, middle, and end of a stack of student papers.
  • You have a team of graders and wish to ensure validity and inter-rater reliability.


Don’t reinvent the wheel! There are tons of excellent rubrics available online. If nothing else, they will provide a good starting point. Here are some to start with:

AAC&U Value Rubrics

Meta-Assessment Rubric

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