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Subject: Rubrics


An assessment (or rubric) is a way of consistently and accurately measuring student performance on particular learning outcome(s) across settings, assignments, and disciplines. Rubrics contain 3 key components: Dimensions, Mastery Levels, and Performance Descriptors (see glossary entries for each component for more information).

Dimensions/SLO Criteria

The “dimensions” (or rows) of an assessment rubric differentiate the specific skills or narrowed components of the SLO is to be assessed.

Mastery Level

The scoring scale that categorizes the stages of student learning along a spectrum of growth toward mastery (e.g. Beginning, Developing, Accomplished, Exemplary).

Performance Descriptor

A performance descriptors specifically describes a learning outcome in terms of observable and measurable behaviors. The narrative description specifies what a person who has the qualities articulated in the outcome knows or can do at various levels of mastery.


Norming, or calibration, is a process that brings a group of faculty raters together to develop a shared understanding of the language of a rubric and the outcome it assesses, discover any need for editing of the rubric, and strengthen scoring consistency.

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