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Uses of success criteria and rubrics

By referring to the success criteria and the rubric performance descriptors,

  • students are able to evaluate their progress while in the process of completing an assessment task or activity, and then evaluate their achievement on completion;
  • peers are able to provide feedback to other students at strategic points while they are in the process of completing the assessment task or activity*;
  • the teacher is able to provide feedback which students can act on to improve their performance.**

*This assumes that the assessment task or activity is being used for formative rather than summative purposes. Alternatively, peers can provide feedback at the end of the drafting stage.

** Again, this assumes that either the task or activity is being used for formative purposes, or students have an opportunity to receive feedback from the teacher in relation to their draft - before going on to complete a final copy which could be used for summative purposes.

If rubrics are to be used in the formative way described above, they need to be designed so that numbers are not assigned to the various levels of performance. Assigning numbers immediately allocates a summative function and limits the use of rubrics from a formative point of view.