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Method and Criteria for Evaluation, and Grading Rubrics

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Method and Criteria for Evaluation

The grading in this course is based  participation in class discussion (response to questions, etc.) and completion of written assignments. Overall, half of the grade depends on the interactive participation - class topic discussions, team project discussions, and educational planning discussions - and approximately half of the grade depends on individual written assignments. Credits are received for this course by demonstrating knowledge and application of the course content and meeting all of the course objectives listed below.

There are seven numerically graded and five pass/fail online discussion forums with directions and criteria listed to be met. Online discussions reflect the module topics, are supported by the texts, Internet websites and audio files. The faculty looks for evidence that the student: 1) understood the assigned materials and was able ask questions about items that may have been unclear, 2) completed all of the assigned readings, 3) viewed and analyzed the selected videos and related this to the course concepts, 4) integrated relevant reading material from the course and additional library and research resources as needed to complete written assignments,  5) contributed to the course discussions in culturally respectful and tolerant way, 6) learned the course concepts, theory, historical-cultural framework while appreciating the role of the professional nurse.

There are six individual, numerically graded written assignments and five pass/fail (drafts, icebreaker and ) written assignments. Specific assignments have detailed grading and directions. The Weekly Learning Journal (WLJ) will consist of thirteen entries and a summary of the learning throughout the course and will be graded numerically as a whole. Written work is evaluated for substantive content on the topic and the use of APA (American Psychological Association) formatting and proper sentence and paragraph structure, grammar, punctuation, spelling and basic, English composition are expected.  


The final grade is based on the following:

 Participation in Course Discussions and Activities:


 Written Assignments:


 Weekly Learning Journal:


 *Educational Planning Readings and Activities are a part of each module and graded as such.



Online Discussion Grading Rubric





Needs Improvement


Timely Discussion Contributions

5-6 postings well distributed throughout the week. Demonstrates self-initiative.


4-6 Postings distributed throughout the week. Requires occasional prompting

3-6 postings somewhat distributed. Limited initiative

2-6 postings, not distributed throughout the week; rarely participates


Delivery/Relevance  of Post

Consistently posts topics related to discussion content, cites additional references related to topic

Frequently posts topics that are related to discussion content. Post is supported by readings

Occasionally posts off topic. Does not offer further insight into topic. Questionable relationship to readings

Poor Spelling &/or grammar. Off topic post not evident that readings were understood &/or not incorporated into discussion.


Expression with the Post

Expresses opinions and ideas in a clear manner. Post reflects that readings were understood and incorporated into response


Ideas & opinions are stated clearly occasional lack of connection to topic. Post incorporates some readings

Unclear connection to topic, minimal expression of ideas. States opinions without connection to readings

Does not express ideas clearly. No connection to topic


Contribution to the Learning Community

Frequently stimulates discussion, motivates group discussion through questioning. Presents creative approaches to topic



Frequently encourages discussion to present relevant viewpoints. Interacts freely

Occasionally makes meaningful reflection in group discussion. Marginal interactions with peers.

Does not make an effort to participate in learning community. Does not any relevant ideas to topic

Grading Rubric for Written Papers

The following rubric is used to ensure consistent standards for evaluating student written work.




Convincingly and ardently communicates a noteworthy idea to an audience through sophisticated use of rhetorical strategies



Effectively conveys an insightful idea to an audience through consistent and controlled use of rhetorical strategies.



Communicates an idea, but does not consistently address the needs of its audience.



Needs Improvement 


Fails to present its ideas to the audience and does not meet some or all of the criteria for the assignment


1. Demonstrates an awareness of audience, is sophisticated, and is clearly established and maintained throughout.

2. Central purpose or argument is readily apparent to the reader

3. Shows a thoughtful, in-depth analysis of a significant topic.

4. Reader gains important insight.

1. Intelligent, clearly established, and consistently addressed throughout.

2. Clear purpose or argument, but may sometimes digress from it.

3. Provides reasonable support for central purpose/argument and displays evidence of a basic analysis of a significant topic.

4. Reader gains some insights.

1. Has a central idea is conventional or genera and not consistently clear throughout the paper.

2. At times, information supports central purpose or argument.

3. Analysis is basic or general.

4. Reader gains few insights.

1. is superficial and inconsistently addressed; reveals limited awareness of audience.

2. Central purpose or argument is not clearly identified.

3. Analysis is vague or not evident.

4. Reader is confused or may be misinformed.


1. Has a clear sense of logical order appropriate to the content and the thesis i.e. flow smoothly from one to another and are clearly linked to each other.

2. Reader can follow the line of reasoning.

1. Ideas are arranged in a clear and controlled manner to support central purpose or argument i.e. usually linked to each other.

2. For the most part reader can follow the line of reasoning.

1. The essay’s organization is choppy and may, at times, be difficult to follow.

2. The reader is fairly clear about what writer intends.

1.Reveals no apparent strategy and lapses in focus and logic.

2. The reader can not identify a line of reasoning and loses interest.

Research (if applicable)

1. Compelling evidence from professionally legitimate sources is given to support claims.

2. References are primarily peer-reviewed professional journals or other approved sources.

3. Uses sources effectively and documents sources accurately.

4. APA format used accurately and consistently in the paper and on the ‘reference’ page.

1. Professionally legitimate sources supporting claims are generally present and attribution is for the most part, clear and fairly represented.

2. Most references are professionally legitimate but some are questionable or uncertain.

3. Minor errors in citing of sources/documents with uncertain reliability.

4. APA format is used with minor error through out paper and on ‘reference’ page.

1. Lacks sufficient research for the topic, poorly incorporates sources, or fails to document accurately.

2. Most references are from sources that are not peer reviewed and have uncertain reliability.

3. Many statements seem unsubstantiated and reader is confused about the source of information and ideas.

4. Frequent errors in APA format through out paper and on ‘reference’ page.

1.Fails to include sufficient sources for topic, incorporates irrelevant or inadequate sources, or plagiarizes.

2. There are virtually no sources that are professionally reliable.

3. References are seldom cited to support statements.

4. Format of the document is not recognizable as APA.


1. Demonstrates critical thinking that is clear, insightful, in depth, and relevant to the topic.

2. Writing is compelling, hooks the reader and sustains interest throughout.


1. Demonstrates critical thinking that is more than adequate, with significant detail; may show depth in thinking and research.

2 Writing is generally engaging, is focused and keeps reader’s attention.

1. Demonstrates limited critical thinking and limited knowledge of the subject.

2. Writing is dull and unengaging and reader finds it difficult to maintain interest.

1. Displays little or no knowledge of the subject, does not form conclusions, or fails to exhibit critical thinking or clear reasoning.

2. Writing has little personality and reader quickly losses interest and stops reading.

Syntax and Diction

1. Uses sophisticated language that engages the reader;

2. Manipulates sentence length to enhance the total effect of the essay;

3. Uses precise language that expresses complex ideas clearly.


1. Demonstrates knowledge of and skill with complex and varied sentence constructions and vocabulary.

2. Flow from sentence to sentence is generally smooth.

3. Word choice is generally precise and effective.


1. Demonstrates competency with language use, but sentence constructions and vocabulary may be limited or repetitive.

2. Sentences are awkwardly constructed so that the reader is occasionally distracted.

3. Word choice is merely adequate, and the range of words is limited. Some words are used inappropriately.

1.Fails to demonstrate competency with language use; sentence constructions and vocabulary may be inappropriate, facile, or incoherent.

2. Errors in sentence structure are frequent enough to be a major distraction to the reader.

3. Many words are used inappropriately, confusing the reader.

Format and Design

1. Fully integrates elements of design to best serve rhetorical purpose.

2. The tone is consistently professional and appropriate for an academic research paper

1. Consistently contributes to the persuasive aims of the assignment.

2. The tone is generally professional and is appropriate for scholarly research paper.

1. Unevenly incorporates elements of design to aid its argument.

2. The tone is not consistently professional or appropriate for scholarly research paper.

1. Makes no attempt to use the elements of design to help persuade its audiences.

2. The tone is unprofessional, is not appropriate for a scholarly research paper.


1. Writing is free or almost free of errors i.e. spelling, grammar, and paragraphing or manuscript format.

1. May contain errors, but these errors do not interfere with the essay’s overall effectiveness.

1. Contains multiple errors that hinder the essay’s readability.

1. Contains serious and multiple errors that seriously hinder the reading of the paper.

Adapted from the: Department of English, Ball State University and the Department of English, Winona State University.