These innovative assignment rubrics can be useful for various ODL institutions in supporting their learners for formative assessment especially in assignment writing.OUM has been using assignment as a component of continuous assessment since its establishment.Although the subject-matter experts were given Assignment Kits which contain guidelines on how to develop the rubrics, the rubrics that some of them had developed can be considered imperfect, as the rubrics were either too simple or missing crucial details.
Most of the external subject-matter experts developed the rubrics based on traditional classroom setting; however, simply transferring assignment rubrics from the traditional classroom to the ODL environment is not always the best decision (Hemby , 2006).
Jonsson (2014) reviewed that “rubrics can facilitate improvements if combined with other meta-cognitive learning activities” and went further to add on “but there is limited evidence supporting the claim that the use of rubrics by itself for self-learning leads to improvements in performance.” Rubrics will normally contain criteria with descriptions directed at learners; however, rubrics can also contain descriptions directed at other stakeholders such as graders “for guidance and comment banks associated with the criteria” (Heinrich , 2012).
The reasons rubrics were introduced in Open University Malaysia’s (OUM) course assignments were to guide learners on how to do their assignments and make grading simpler and structured for graders or examiners (Ali and Fadzil, 2013).
Hence from May 2010 semester, all the subject-matter experts were given instruction and guide to develop assignment questions accompanied with rubrics.
The purpose of this paper is to propose a new standard of assignment rubrics to minimize various interpretations and confusing expectations of the assignment outcome among all stakeholders and enhance the assignment rubrics to function not only as a grading tool but also as an assignment guiding tool for self-managed learning among open and distance learning (ODL) learners. Anyone may reproduce, distribute, translate and create derivative works of this article (for both commercial & non-commercial purposes), subject to full attribution to the original publication and authors.
The paper looks into the problems and issues related to assignment rubrics such as various interpretation, confusing expectations and the need to have appropriate descriptions in the rubrics in order to reflect proper learning outcome among the assignment stakeholders. https://doi.org/10.1108/AAOUJ-01-2018-0009 Download as . The full terms of this licence may be seen at Assessment is the process of measuring and evaluating a learner’s academic achievement for a particular course through continuous assessments and examination (Brown and Knight, 1994).Finally OUM’s appointed graders will mark the assignments submitted by the learners.Figure 2 depicts the various stakeholders in various processes or stages involving assignments in OUM.Rubrics can both teach and evaluate, but many rubrics received from the subject-matter experts only emphasized on evaluation whereby it indicates in which level the learners fall into, but did not show or teach learners how to achieve the highest level of performance (Hemby Assignment rubrics come in various forms with some having complex descriptions of what learners need to achieve, whereas some with simple and specific descriptions (Stevens and Levi, 2013).In traditional learning setting, the lecturers and tutors, who are the subject-matter experts whom had crafted the rubrics and will eventually mark the assignments, have the opportunity to physically explain and deliberate on these descriptions in the classroom so that the learners have an understanding of what is expected from them (Hemby , 2006). This article is published under the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY 4.0) licence.Formative assessment or evaluation in the form of written assignments or essay represents a very flexible test format for assessing ODL learners and enables the stakeholders to monitor whether outcome-oriented or outcome-based learning took place (Chaudhary and Dey, 2013; Oosterhof , 2008).First, the assignment questions and rubrics are developed by the appointed subject-matter experts a few months earlier before the start of the semester.Then the assignment questions and rubrics go through the moderation process done by OUM’s internal academics or lecturers.To solve these issues, the paper explores the new and improved requirements which were imposed to support the new assignment rubrics for courses in the university via a self-guided manual known as Rubrics Formulation Guide. Assessment has always been an integral part of the learning process regardless whether it is traditional and conventional learning or open and distance learning (ODL).Based on the feedback received from university’s lecturers, who also functioned as moderators, it was indicated that the time taken to moderate the assignment rubrics had drastically reduced and in terms of grading, the clarity of the assignment performance expectations among the learners showed improvement, whereby as compared to the previous semester, there was significant drop for the application of remarking of assignments among May 2014 semester learners. (2018), "Innovative assignment rubrics for ODL courses: design, implementation and impact", Asian Association of Open Universities Journal, Vol. Most of the ODL institutions have a combination of formative evaluation via written assignments and summative evaluation via term-end examination (Chaudhary and Dey, 2013).