A Division of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Heinemann

Rethinking Rubrics in Writing Assessment

Maja Wilson
Foreword by Alfie Kohn

ISBN 978-0-325-00856-1 / 0-325-00856-6 / 2006 / 136pp / Paperback
Imprint: Heinemann
Availability: This title is printed on demand and is nonreturnable. Please allow 1 week for printing.
Grade Level: 9th - 12th
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    The book you're about to read is not only a superb analysis of rubrics but a lesson in how to apply careful thinking to classroom practice.
    —Alfie Kohn, Author of The Case Against Standardized Testing
    This book will create the conversations educators desperately need—about accurate assessment, quality in writing, and informed teaching.
    —Randy Bomer, Author of For a Better World

The conventional wisdom in English education is that rubrics are the best and easiest tools for assessment. But sometimes it's better to be unconventional. In Rethinking Rubrics in Writing Assessment, Maja Wilson offers a new perspective on rubrics and argues for a better, more responsive way to think about assessing writers' progress.

Though you may sense a disconnect between student-centered teaching and rubric-based assessment, you may still use rubrics for convenience or for want of better alternatives. Rethinking Rubrics in Writing Assessment gives you the impetus to make a change, demonstrating how rubrics can hurt kids and replace professional decision making with an inauthentic pigeonholing that stamps standardization onto a notably nonstandard process. With an emphasis on thoughtful planning and teaching, Wilson shows you how to reconsider writing assessment so that it aligns more closely with high-quality instruction and avoids the potentially damaging effects of rubrics.

Stop listening to the conventional wisdom, and turn instead to a compelling new voice to find out why rubrics are often replaceable. Open Rethinking Rubrics in Writing Assessment and let Maja Wilson start you down the path to more sensitive, authentic style of writing assessment.

Introduction: When Best Practice and Our Deepest Convictions Are at Odds
1. My Trouble with Rubrics
2. There Is a Cow in Our Classrooms: How Rubrics Became Writing Assessment’s Sacred Cow
3. The Broken Promises of Rubrics
4. The Golden Rule of Assessment: Why Is It So Difficult to Practice What We Preach?
5. The Heart of a New Writing Assessment Paradigm: Agreeing to Disagree
6. Making Our Subjectivity Transparent and Useful: What Response Unmediated by Rubrics Looks Like in Our Classrooms
7. But How Shall We Grade? Investing in Process for the Sake of Product
8. How Do We Make Time to Make It Meaningful? And Other Questions About Assessment Without Rubrics

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