Rubric-Austin Higgs

After reviewing the options, I believe Rubric 1 to be the least rigid and specific, which speaks to my sensibilities to equity, diversity, and access. I believe that in learning in environments such as these, we are expected to display critical thought, while maintaining our individual “voice”. We cannot expect to hear people’s voices if we put excessive parameter around what that voice should sound like. I am not suggesting that the other rubrics are excessive in their parameters, but the first rubric seems to be the most distant from that model.

I think that as long as my expressions show critical thought and understanding of the material, then I am effective in my expression as is the course in its mission. I think that one of the problems with our education system is that it is too rigid and resistant to innovation. Now when I say “innovation” readers of this may disagree with a myriad expamples of  how they themselves witness innovation in educational contexts. I would challenge this, and say that though we make minor innovations in very safe and controlled ways, I want to see a shift in the greater paradigms. I want to see people expressing their understanding in Black English Vernacular, poetry or in pros. I want there to be vehicle for learning that is also readily accessible buy those that prefer to think more abstractly or affectively. I think that allowing for multiple styles, without restriction can result in some very impactful outcomes in understanding of the content. I like that the rubric focuses on the focus. The idea needs to be focused, surely, but not necessarily package so specifically. This will also help with engagement of my content. My voice and engagement stand to be compromised if I am overly concerned about if I am delivering it incorrectly, based on some arbitrary and conventional measure. Another of my favorite attribute is the emphasis on acknowledging other perspectives, in the interest of diversity, compassion, and equity.

Finally, looking at it from the angle, this provides the instructor with a very quick and easy reference for evaluation. As simple as the rubric is, it is not as subjective as one might think. There are objective measures such as use of examples, acknowledgement of opposing ideas, and integration of ideas. I think beyond these parameters, we as educators ethically should not overly dictate expression.





4 thoughts on “Rubric-Austin Higgs

  1. Hi Austin,
    I agree with your thoughts and reasoning with Rubric 1. I feel Rubric 1 provides the writer an open floor to express oneself while focusing on the topic. I can understand why the author of this rubric uses this with a large number of posts having to be graded. However, I like a bit more structure as provided with rubric 3. I like that it provides more specific attributes of an assignment integrating a push for decreasing the transactional distance (community).
    Thanks for your thoughtful and passionate post!

  2. Hey Austin,

    I agree with not limiting expression completely. All of your points were very well thought out and completely valid. I like number three better but I am an individual that strives on clarity and structure. Although, I also enjoy a little flexibility as well. For me, number one was a little too vague. However, perhaps it just needs some change in wording. As you expressed if you know the content, express it well, and are engaged that should be meeting expectations. I agree with that as well. I think I am leaning more towards customizing one honestly at this point.

  3. Austin,

    I agree with how you describe Rubric 1 in that it leaves room for the writer to be open with his/her “voice”. I definitely lean towards 1 for the simplicity and openness of it. I have seen the the points of our classmates regarding Rubric 3 as well.


  4. Austin – Great post. It makes me question what it is we get from the blog posts. Are we checking for understanding? Are we trying to move a conversation forward? Are we looking to gain multiple perspectives? I guess it could be any and all of these, and maybe how you assess the blog depends on the purpose of the assignment. While requiring more work, might be the rightest answer (which seems like it is always the case).

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