Lesson 3: Application of PBL

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11wheel0204-bluearrow.png By the end of this lesson educator will learn how to assess students in a project based learning classroom


Students should learn to create their own rubrics! Why? Because it improves student motivation, interest, and performance in their projects

What are rubrics?

Rubrics are a scoring guide that evaluates a student's performance based on a full range of criteria. Rubrics are authentic assessments that measure students' work. Authentic assessments are used to evaluate students' work by measuring the product according to real life criteria. A rubric enhances the quality of direct instruction. Assessment should provide students with the information they need to make their work better through helpful, specific, and timely feedback. There are two ways students can create this rubric.

How do they benefit students?

When students create rubrics beforehand, they understand how they will be evaluated and can prepare accordingly. Developing a grid and making it available as a tool for students' use will provide the scaffolding necessary to improve the quality of their work and increase their knowledge. Students can use rubrics as a tool to develop their abilities.

Why should students create their own rubrics?

When students create their own rubrics they are able to set their goals, revise them, then critique them again, until the work is of really high quality. This allows the students to get much more high quality feedback from themselves, their group members, and their teachers.

Steps in the creation of student generated rubrics:

  • Use the board to create a grid, similar to the one created on a word document. List the importance concepts that must be presented in the project.
  • Show the class an example of a project from previous years or a teacher created project. Work with the class to give and receive feedback from the students. This really helps them figure out what they are looking for in the rubric.
  • Brainstorm criteria for grading. Is working together important? Collaboration? Is it important that you create an rough draft first?
  • Discuss with the students how they want feedback to be given to them; numbers or written comments? How should points or numerical scores be distributed in the rubric? How and when will the rubric be used? This discussion reveals what students really value in their project work.
  • Build the final rubric based on the students’ ideas. Allow them to work with it, to reflect on their own work and that of their peers, so it is a working document guiding them through the project.
  • Lastly, the teacher may want to make the audience part of the assessment process. The audience can be more important than any feedback they will get from their teacher.

Example of Rubric: PBLRUBRIC.jpg

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