One way to make sure that you are mastering the hallmarks of feedback is to use the rubric while you are working an assignment, both when scoring, and providing feedback. The tips below can help you use the rubric in order to make your feedback highly effective!
Use the rubric to remain objective in your feedback, rather than including your opinion
When leaving highly effective feedback it is important to remain free of bias and personal opinion. As a Graider, you have the advantage of not knowing the students personally, but biases can still be formed based on their level of work. Comments like those below and subjective and do not allow the student to truly understand how they performed according to the rubric:
- 🚫 'I really liked how you organized your essay, nice job!'
- 🚫 'Your introduction is really interesting, great work!'
These comments focus on what the Graider thinks rather than what the rubric states is important as a goal of the assignment. In order to make sure you are being objective, it is important to always use the rubric. Below is an example of subjective feedback (orange) and objective feedback (yellow).
Use the rubric to help you prioritize your feedback for students
Your feedback should always be focused on the Areas for Growth that will have the most significant impact on the student moving forward. Use the rubric in order to help make the best decisions in regards to prioritized feedback:
- After objectively scoring the student's work using the rubric, identify the rubric components that scored the lowest. These categories will often be the best areas to focus your comments, as they provide the greatest opportunity for improvement.
- Consider if there are certain components of the rubric that should be emphasized more than others. For example, if the assignment prompt focuses on providing textual evidence, that component should be reflected in the rubric and prioritized in your feedback to students.
- Although they may be a parts of writing that students often struggle with, spelling and grammar or other more style-focused points should almost never be the top priority in your feedback. It is important to leave students and teachers with content-focused feedback, except in cases where significant conventions errors hinder comprehension.
Here is an example of a Graider focusing on the organization component of a rubric. You’ll notice that the Graider used the same language that is present in the rubric description to help guide the student from where they currently are toward mastery.
Use the rubric to help make your comments actionable
Referencing the rubric either directly or indirectly in your feedback will establish a clear connection between what the student did, what they need to do in order to improve, and how to do it.
Here is an example of how a Graider mirrored the language from the rubric in order to make their comments clear and actionable for the student. You'll notice that the Graider also included specific references to the student's writing. This makes the feedback more personalized and creates clear action steps for the student.
As you grade, you will have to determine the right balance of direct and indirect references to the rubric. Remember to keep student friendliness in mind and always use language that is easy for students to understand and meets them at their level.