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6:1 Defining assessment terms

Educators in different settings use different terms to describe the same concepts. To ensure clarity of the concepts discussed in this manual, the terms objective, criteria, and rubric are defined below as they will be used throughout the manual.

Objectives Objectives describe in detail the tasks the learner should be able to perform and knowledge or skills the learner should be able to demonstrate. Objectives are used to plan instruction. For example, student is able to describe orally different types of weather conditions.

Criteria Criteria describe in detail the tasks the learner should be able to perform and knowledge or skills the learner should be able to demonstrate. Criteria are used to plan assessment. While the words criteria and objectives describe the same concept, they are often used at different times in the design of instruction and assessment. For example, student is able to describe orally different types of weather conditions.

Rubrics Rubrics combine criteria with a rating scale to describe the task, knowledge, or skill the learner should be able to demonstrate and the degree to which s/he can demonstrate mastery or progress. For example, student is able to clearly, somewhat clearly, with limited clarity, describe orally four, three, two, one different types of weather conditions.


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