Evaluating Group Work

One of the biggest reservations that teachers have about assigning group work revolves around the issue of grading. How does one do it fairly? What if one or two members of a 5-person team end up doing most of the work?

One answer is to allow the students a say in the grading process. Knowing before the project even starts that they will be asked to fill out a self-evaluation and a peer evaluation form at the end of the project, and being aware that that evaluation will be factored into the final grade can be a huge motivating factor for keeping all students engaged and working productively.

Here is an example of such a form. I take each person’s scores (if they are in a 5 person group, there will be 5 scores per person), add them together, and average them. This final average becomes their “group participation” score on the rubric that I use for grading the project. How heavily you weight this aspect of the project is up to you.

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This entry was posted in Best Practices, Evaluating Student Work, Grading, grading groups, Teaching Practice, Working in Groups and tagged , , , by Jane Alden Stevens. Bookmark the permalink.

About Jane Alden Stevens

Jane Alden Stevens is a photographer and educator who is Professor Emeritus of Fine Arts at the University of Cincinnati. An active artist, Stevens has exhibited and published her work extensively both in the US and abroad. She is the author of “Tears of Stone: World War I Remembered” (2004). In the course of her teaching career, Stevens taught courses in film, photography, and professional practices for fine artists. Her interest in teaching practices was deepened when she started teaching the "Graduate Teaching Workshop", a required graduate level course for fine artists and art historians that prepares them to teach the courses they will later be assigned. She was also involved in the Preparing Future Faculty program at the University of Cincinnati, which prepares masters and doctoral students across all programs for teaching at the university level. She has conducted pedagogy workshops for a variety of universities, as well as participated in academic practicum panels at educational conferences. The recipient of numerous teaching awards, Stevens was honored with the all-university Cohen Award for Excellence in University Teaching at the University of Cincinnati in 2002 and Professor of the Year honors in her college in 2011.

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