Grading with Rubrics in SchoolFront

A rubric is an assessment tool used to measure students' work. It is a scoring guide that seeks to evaluate a student's performance based on the sum of a full range of criteria rather than a single numerical score. 

Rubrics can be created in a variety of forms and levels of complexity, however, they generally contain common features. They:

  • Focus on measuring a stated objective (performance, behavior, or quality).
  • Use a range to rate performance.
  • Contain specific performance characteristics arranged in levels indicating the degree to which a standard has been met.

Rubrics are frequently associated with the use of standards-based assessment wherein a criterion is set up for standards of what every student is expected to know, and a score is set compared to these benchmarks (e.g. grade levels) rather than a ranking compared to a norm. It is expected that every child will become proficient in all areas of academic skills by the end of a period (e.g. a trimester, school year, or even 10 years of schooling).

When rubrics are adopted they can help to standardize the manner in which educators (across courses, schools, districts, states, and countries) evaluate the proficiency of students, reducing subjectivity and increasing the ability of educators to identify specific points of high and low individual student proficiency against each standard. Knowing the areas in which a student is struggling helps teachers to focus remedial efforts and sometimes makes it easier to prescribe effective interventions.

Rubrics can become a continuous part of the whole teaching and learning process, particularly with secondary-level students who can become involved in the assessment process through both peer and self-assessment. This involvement empowers the students and as a result, their learning becomes more focused and self-directed, blurring the lines between teaching, learning, and assessment. 


Here is an example of a simple rubric for "Social Development."


Level One:
Minimal Competency

Level Two:
Basic Competency

Level Three:
Advanced Competency

Level Four:
Outstanding Competency

Cooperation and Collaboration

Does not cooperate or collaborate with other students.

Makes minimal attempts to cooperate and collaborate.

Cooperates and collaborates with others at most times.

Successfully cooperates and collaborates with others. Encourages others to cooperate and collaborate.

Interpersonal Interaction

Disrupts group harmony. Attempts to break down interpersonal relationships.

Displays limited ability to interact positively. Makes minimal effort to work with others.

Displays considerable ability to interact positively. Makes consistent effort to work in harmony with others.

Displays exceptional ability to interact positively. Creates and works in harmonious relationships.

Building Relationships

Makes no effort to develop positive relationships with other students.

Makes limited efforts to build relationships. Limits efforts to specific students.

Puts forth considerable effort to build positive social relationships with most students.

Puts forth exceptional effort to build positive relationships. Extends efforts to all students.


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