Finding Parallels Between Testing and Life

The Benefits of Standards-Based Grading System in Education

Standards-based grading combines updated instructional practices and culture from traditional dictation systems to better engage students and to foster a positive learning environment. Standards-based grading also measures students learning and offers itself to understand the effectiveness of instruction. The ability of teachers to track the students’ progress enables them to custom make the instructions to fit the individual student needs according to their performance in each of the “learning targets”. Is therefore follows that standards-based trading systems use a different grading scale from traditional grading methods. A was a high completion rate for student when they will have completed 90 to 100% of the work, B was for the completion of 80 to 89%, C was for the completion of 70 to 79%, D was for the completion of 60 to 69% while F was the completion of 0 to 59% of the work. The standards-based grading system has numbers 1 to 4 as points from which the instructor can choose how well a student has mastered a subject. Typical skills of 1-4 reflect student’s increasing skill in the subject and an instructor can know how to well address the issue from the progress. This enables the students to continue working and learning until they are able to achieve the target and is therefore viewed as a ladder where students climb up, one rung at the time, and eventually reached the top. The grading system accommodates personal accomplishment of an activity as students can be confused on receiving an instruction. A continuous understanding of the student’s mastery by the teacher makes them to adopt to the individual instructional needs and discourses education to be more effective and engaging.

In environments that harbour standards-based grading, it is noted that better feedback from the teachers accelerates student learning. Traditional grading methods discriminated students with a low work rate and the teachers cannot sufficiently know how to improve the students as they will force them to adopt to the teaching system of which not all of them will respond well to. Targets are further broken down into rubrics to help the students to see the steps that are required to reach their highest level of achievement. Students can self-assess themselves and be able to reflect upon their own performance.

Standard-based grading systems neutralize this problem as the teachers will know which students are in level 1, 2 or 3 and enables the instructor to offer a level appropriate work to improve the students. This particular kind of instruction is called “differentiated instruction” or simply DI in short.

Standards-based grading is focused on learning and mastery which gives students a motivation to learn. This is an emotionally safe environment where students are encouraged to stretch themselves, make mistakes and learn as opposed to the traditional methods that create a test-taking fear and calls anxiety that interferes with learning because students are afraid of making mistakes.

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