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Rubrics in D2L

Rubrics allow you to establish set criteria for grading assignments; you can attach rubrics to submission folders so that the criteria are available to students before they submit their assignment. Rubrics can be used to display the number of points students were awarded for each criterion after you have graded an assignment, and they can also be used to provide customized feedback.

Rubrics contain criteria that list the attributes on which an assignment will be assessed and levels that list the standards each criterion must meet. A specific grade or score is usually assigned to each level. In D2L, you can use a rubric to calculate scores for multiple criteria to determine an overall score for an assignment.

For more information on designing rubrics, visit the Rubrics teaching guide.

Creating a New Rubric

  1. Click Edit Course > Course Administration in the course navigation bar.
  2. Click Rubrics under the Assessment heading.
  3. Click New Rubric.
  4. Enter a name for the rubric.
    Edit Rubric header
  5. Select the Type of rubric to build:
    1. Analytic (default option): Multiple criterion rubrics that assess granular achievement on an activity. This is the recommended option.
    2. Holistic: Single criterion rubrics that assess overall achievement on an activity.
  6. Select an option from the Scoring Method drop-down menu:
    • Points (default option): The rubric will calculate a numeric score with all criteria weighted equally
    • Custom Points: The rubric will calculate a numeric score with some criteria weighted more heavily than others
    • No Score: The rubric will display only text feedback, not a numeric score

    NOTE: Set level order by clicking the Reverse Level Order button (optional). By default, D2L organizes the levels from 4 to 1 (from left to right).

  7. Set the number of levels. By default, there are four levels. To add a new level, click the + Plus Icon to add a level to either the right or left side of the rubric.
    Add additional level to rubric
  8. Set the number of points that each level is worth. In the above example, Level 4 is worth 4 points. Whatever score you put in the uppermost level is the score that will appear in each criterion's "out of score."
  9. Set the number of Criteria you would like. Criteria can be things like “accuracy” or “organization”. (Three is the default option.) To add another criterion, click the "+Add Criterion" button.
  10. Adjust the scores that qualify the "Overall Score." By default, the score is set to be on a 12-point scale, but you can which score belongs to each level.
  11. Set additional rubric options (click  Options to expand and show the additional options).
  • Rubric Visibility: choose if or how students see the rubric
    • Rubric is always visible to learners
    • Rubric is hidden until feedback is published
    • Rubric is never visible to learners​
  • Score Visibility: check this box to hide the scores from your students
  • Description: add a description of your rubic that only you can see
Your rubric is automatically saved as your work. It is also set to "Published" by default. We recommend that you change this status to "Draft" until you have completely finished setting up your rubric.

NOTE: You can also preview your rubric to see it how your students do. To do this, click the dropdown arrow next to the title of your rubric at the top of the page. From this menu, select "Preview".

About Setting Criterion

For each criterion: 
  1. Enter a name for the criterion in the first column.
  2. Enter descriptions of the characteristics the student's assignment must have for each of the criterion's levels. These descriptions will be available to students before they submit their assignments.
  3. Enter text for initial feedback for each level (optional). After you score your students, they will see the feedback for their level on each criterion.

NOTE: You can also provide descriptions and feedback for a student's overall score by entering feedback at the bottom of the page. Under "Overall Score" you can enter text into the fields for each level.

Changing the Status of your Rubric from the Rubrics Homepage

  1. Click Edit Course > Course Administration in the course navigation bar.
  2. Click Rubrics under the Assessment heading. A page will open that lists all of the rubrics you have created.
  3. Click the drop-down arrow to the right of the name of the rubric you want to publish, and select Set Status.
  4. Click Published. The rubric's status will now be listed as published on the rubrics page.

Changing the Status of your Rubric from Inside a Rubric

  1. Click on the status icon in the upper-righthand corner.
  2. Change the status by selecting a new one. Your changes will automatically be saved.

NOTE: Keep in mind, that before a rubric can be linked to an assessment item in D2L, it needs to be "Published".

    Associating a Rubric with a Submission Folder

    1. Go to the Submissions area.
    2. Click the drop-down arrow to the right of the submission folder's name, then select Edit.
    3. Click the Add Rubric button. The Select Rubric window will open.
    4. Select the checkbox next to the rubric you want to associate with the submission folder.
    5. Click Add Selected. The window will close, and the rubric you selected will appear in the Rubrics section.
    6. Click Save and Close.

    Associating a Rubric with a Discussion Board

    1. Go to the Discussions area.
    2. Click the drop-down arrow to the right of the topic's name, then select Edit Topic.
    3. Go to the Assessment tab.
    4. Click the Add Rubric button. The Select Rubric window will open.
    5. Select the checkbox next to the rubric you want to associate with the submission folder.
    6. Click Add Selected. The window will close, and the rubric you selected will appear in the Rubrics section.
    7. Click Save and Close.

    Editing a Rubric 

    Although you cannot edit a rubric after it has been associated with a submission folder, you can create a copy of the rubric, edit the copy, then replace the previous version with the new one.

    1. Click Edit Course > Course Administration in the course navigation bar.
    2. Click Rubrics under the Assessment heading. A page will open that lists all of the rubrics you have created.
    3. Click the drop-down arrow to the right of the name of the rubric you want to copy, then select Copy. A duplicate version of the rubric will now appear in your list of rubrics.
    4. Click on the name of the copied rubric.
    5. Replace the name of the rubric with a new one.
    6. Make changes to the rubric's properties or levels and criteria if needed.
    7. Follow the steps in the Adding a Rubric section if you want to associate the new rubric with a submission folder.

    Grade a Submission with a Rubric

    1. Click Submissions in the course navigation bar.
    2. Select the name of the submission folder that contains the files you want to grade. A page that lists all of the files submitted by students will open.
    3. Click on the name of the file that you want to grade. A page that displays the document and the grading interface will open.
    4. Click the name of the rubric associated with the submission folder; it is listed on the right side of the page, under the Evaluation heading. The rubric will appear in a new window.
    5. Click the box for the level the student achieved for each criterion on your rubric. As you select scores for the criteria, the rubric will automatically update the overall score.
    6. Click Add Feedback in the criteria column to enter qualitative feedback.
    7. The rubric will automatically save as you enter information. You can see the current save status at the top of the window.
    8. Click Publish to send the score, grade, feedback, and completed rubric in the submission folder to the student.

    Grade a Discussion Board Post with a Rubric

    Before you can grade a discussion board post with a rubric, you must have a grade item associated with the topic. For information on how to set up a grade item, visit our guide here.

    1. Click Discussions in the course navigation bar.

    2. Click the drop-down arrow to the right of the name of the discussion topic that contains the posts you want to grade. Select Assess Topic.

    3. For each student, click Topic Score underneath their name.

    4. The rubric will show in a new window and the student's posts will show at the bottom of the window.

    5. Click the box for the level the student achieved for each criterion on your rubric. As you select scores for the criteria, the rubric will automatically update the overall score.
    6. Click Add Feedback in the criteria column to enter qualitative feedback.
    7. Click P
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