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Transcript of Standards-Based Grading
Why should you use Standards-Based Grading?
Jigsaw Middle School Project
Q: How do we make grading meaningful ?
A: Standards-Based Grading
Standards-based grading focuses
on skills, not points.
Grades are aligned to the standards.
They are given based on the learning goals.
Students receive multiple opportunities
to show mastery of standards.
How do you implement Standards-Based Grading?
Standards-based grading helps teachers give better feedback to students. We can be clear with the students about how well they have mastered the curriculum.
Standards-based grading forces us to examine our curriculum and ensure each assignment, assessment and project has a purpose. By establishing clear learning goals, we can be more intentional about what each activity will assess.
When using standards-based assessments, the teacher knows exactly which skills need to be assessed. These assessments are used to inform teachers and students of what the student has learned and what are the next steps in learning -- reteaching or extension.
Traditional vs. Standards-Based Grading
What Researchers & Teachers Think About Standards-Based Grading
"Standards-Based Grading is a system of reporting student proficiency in a number of specific learning goals (or standards). Rather than give students one grade on a test that assessed multiple skills, this system gives students a number of scores that represent their proficiency in each of the skills assessed. The idea is that at the end of the class a student has mastered the essential content necessary for the next level. You are focused on knowledge, not on points."
Standards-Based Grading effects on student learning
From the student's perspective, grades need to be accurate and meaningful. When a student makes progress they feel motivated and more successful. Students begin to think about grades and become more aware of their own learning and understanding.
What Parents Think About Standards-Based Grading
"Standards-Based Teaching, Learning and Assessment systems empower parents and students because they encourage teachers to be very explicit about what a student needs to learn in order to earn an A. Such a system helps teachers and therefore parents and students celebrate what has been learned as well as identify the student's gaps in learning."
"Standards-based approaches to grading address these grading dilemmas in two important ways. First, they require teachers to base grades on explicit criteria derived from the articulated learning standards. To assign grades, teachers must analyze the meaning of each standard and decide what evidence best reflects achievement of that specific standard. Second, they compel teachers to distinguish product, process, and progress criteria in assigning grades" (Guskey, 2006, 2009).
Standards-Based Grading Advantages:
With Standards-Based Grading students begin to take ownership of their learning
Students begin to ask:
Can I improve?
How can I improve my score?
What levels was I good at?
What levels do I need to practice?
Marzano, R. (2005). What works in schools (PowerPoint presentation). Available: www.marzanoandassociates.com/pdf/ ShortVersion.pdf. Retrieved from
Guskey, Thomas R, and Lee Ann Jung. (2011). Grades that mean something: Kentucky develops standards-based report cards. Phi Delta Kappan. Volume 93, Number 2. Pages 52-57.
Needleman, Sara. (2012, December 18). Why should a parent be excited about Standards-Based grading?. Retrieived from https://www.jumpro.pe/blog/why-should-a-parent-be-excited-about-standards-based-grading/
Advantages and Disadvantages. (2000). Retrieived from
ActiveGrade. (2001). Retrieived from http://activegrade.com/help/sbar_faq
What is Standards-Based Grading?
Grading practices that support student learning.
Assesses student performance against specific and measurable learning goals. •
Gives a clear indication of what students know and are able to.
Helps teachers and students identify areas in which students are making progress and target areas in which they need additional support.
GRADES SHOULD BE BASED ON...
Students who can identify what they are learning significantly outsource those who cannot.
No one method of grading serves all purposes well, but standards-based grading is an assessment and feedback method that helps teachers stay focused on the goals of the class, align all parts of the curriculum to the course objectives and give students specific and measurable feedback about their strengths and weaknesses, all in order to support their learning. Therefore, standards-based grading is a valuable grading practice to consider in your classrooms.
An "average" of student assignments; percentage based grading scale
Vague: What does 83% mean? 83% of what?
Focuses on the teacher and what has been taught instead of what the student actually learned
Assessment-based: one shot assessments, either you know it or you don't
A student who masters standards more quickly is rewarded with higher grades. A student who needs more time risks falling farther behind.
Measures students' progress toward learning goals
Gives useful information to drive instruction and support student progress
Keeps the student and learning as the focus
Gives multiple opportunities for meeting standards
A student has until the end of the school year to meet standards
Standard-Based Grading Disadvantages:
Instead of an overall grade for a subject area, the subject area is further broken down into specific topics that were covered in that subject area.
contains specific performance characteristics arranged in levels
focuses on measuring a stated objective
uses a range to rate the level of mastery
quoted by Sara Needleman,
mother, educator and former middle school teacher
The transition from traditional letter grading systems to standards-based grading can be difficult for parents and students to understand, especially if they are used to receiving letter grades.
Careless implementation of standards-based grading may have negative consequences for students.
Standards-based grading helps to drive instruction. It provides clear information to help the teacher modify or adjust their instruction.
It also helps teachers differentiate. Students who demonstrate mastery can be challenged and students who may be struggling can receive additional support.
Establish clear, kid-friendly
Plan instruction that targets the learning goals.
How will I provide additional support to students that need it?
What do students already know?
How will I know students know it?
What will I do for students that already know it?
What formative and summative assessments will I use?
What do students have to know and be able to do in order to meet the learning goals?
Formative and summative assessments should happen throughout the unit
(i.e. exit tickets, oral quizzes, stop and jots)
After assessments, feedback should be given to students. This feedback determines if there needs to interventions or enrichment opportunities
Establish clear, kid-friendly learning goals