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Rubrics in Discussions vs in Grades

In the new version of Brightspace, grading discussions with rubrics has become more robust, but has some caveats.

Add Rubric in Discussions, not in Grades

When you add both a the rubric and grade item to a discussion topic, you can now grade the assignment using the rubric within the discussion topic and publish the grade directly from there to grades.

The one caution is that while the grade gets published to Grades, students can’t see the rubric within Grades. Students must go to the discussion topic. Once they do, they will see their score right in the topic and will have a link to the Rubric where they can see your selections and any feedback you gave on individual criteria.

You can put comments in the “General Feedback” box below the grading rubric and those comments will show to the students in Grades.

Also, when faculty go into Grades, there is an icon with the grade item to click and bring up the discussion rubric for grading, just as if you had accessed it within the discussion. But, again, students won’t have access to that from within Grades; they will have to go back to the discussion topic.

If you add a rubric to the Grade item itself, students will get a link in Grades to view the rubric. However, that won’t be connected to the rubric in discussions. You can have a rubric attached both the discussion topic and the grade item. What you do in one won’t affect what’s in the other. The last one you save will push its points into the grade item.

Tricky Criteria-Level Feedback

When you are grading with the rubric in discussions, you can add feedback to criteria. The box where you type the feedback has a “Done” link in the lower right corner. You must click “Done” before you click “Save.” If you don’t click “Done” first, Pilot will only save the first letter of your feedback.

Create a Link in Grades to the Discussion Rubric

It is possible to provide students a link in Grades to the Discussion rubric you marked up. That way, they don’t have to go back into discussions to see your full feedback on the assignment. This a hack that will need to be repaired if you import everything into a new course.

  1. Start by imitating a student whose rubric has been marked up in the discussion topic.
  2. In the discussion topic, click the link for the rubric and copy the URL.
  3. Paste the URL into a text editor and look for the part that says “userId” and replace its value with the replacement string {UserId}.
  4. Then copy the new version of the URL and use it to make a link in the Grade item’s description. “View Graded Rubric” would make good link text.
  5. Be sure to grade item’s option to “Allow users to view grade item description.”