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Teaching and Learning

Rubrics and eMarking

Assessment and marking are activities of keen interest to all involved in teaching and learning. The resources below were developed in response to feedback from SCU staff and students. Their aim is to assist staff to streamline the marking process and support lecturer efficiency and student engagement. Staff input came from the 2011 Excellence in Assessment and the 2012 eMarking projects. Student feedback came from the 2012 Student First Year Experience and Course Experience surveys.

Student survey feedbackStaff project feedback

Issues identified:

  • It is not easy to know the standard of work expected
  • Wanting to receive helpful and timely feedback.

Issues identified:

  • Standards were not well articulated or consistently applied
  • Staff members were interested in eMarking practices but required more support to engage effectively.

Rubrics were identified as a potential solution to facilitate transparent assessment practices. The eMarking resources were designed to support workflow efficiency and assist the delivery of feedback.

Rubrics resources

Rubrics are helpful in successful assessment practice and come in a variety of forms including holistic and analytic rubrics. The type of rubric chosen depends on the nature of the assessment task. To help with using rubrics we recommend you:

Video: Rubrics Overview recording for details on holistic and analytic rubrics
View the Rubrics overview transcript

Download the Using Rubrics in Assessment booklet for advice about the design and use of rubrics.

If you decide to use a holistic rubric, create the rubric using MS Word and save as a PDF file in the Blackboard unit.

If you decide to use an analytic rubric, Blackboard provides an analytic rubric tool for use. Several PDF resources are available to guide you through the technical tasks of marking and creating a Blackboard rubric for an MS Word assignment.

When using MS Word to create your rubric, download the Templates for rubrics document to assist your rubric design (holistic or analytic).

How to Use Rubrics resources

Creating Blackboard Rubrics

Quick tips:

  • New Blackboard rubrics default to three rows and three columns. Change the default grid to add columns for the five SCU Grade Descriptors (HD, D, C, P and F).
  • To make your rubric interactive with the Blackboard Grade Centre, associate it with a Blackboard Assignment when the rubric is created.
  • Rubrics created for Turnitin Assignments may be viewed as a PDF file to assist academic marking and improve student learning but are not interactive with the Blackboard Grade Centre.

Step through the guides to create an interactive Blackboard analytic rubric:

For more information see Blackboard Rubric Tips (pdf)

eMarking using Blackboard Rubrics

Quick tips:

  • The assignment can be viewed onscreen or downloaded.
  • Both the assignment and rubric can be viewed onscreen.

Step through the guides to mark an assignment using an interactive Blackboard analytic rubric:

External resources

The Blackboard Instruction Videos website provides tutorials on grading, creating and associating rubrics. Although the screen shots which appear in the video tutorials represent a different version of Blackboard than is currently used at SCU, the resources are still a useful virtual tour of these processes.

eMarking resources

To assist staff interested in streamlining the electronic assessment workflow process, both existing and newly created SCU learning resources have been combined in the table below.

Video eMarking Overview recording for table details and eMarking benefits
View the eMarking overview transcript


The eMarking@SCU table describes the aims of eMarking and lists some eMarking tool options.

The table also provides links to related learning resources which demonstrate efficient use of the tools for marking, providing feedback and grading assignments.

Download the eMarking@SCU (pdf) table to access the learning resources.

How to use MS Word for eMarking

This resource offers technical assistance regarding the provision of quality feedback on MS Word assignments.

The MS Word document is currently the most common submission format for SCU assignments.

Download eMarking using MS Word for eMarking (pdf) tips.

The resources will be updated as Blackboard upgrade versions are released.

We would like to acknowledge staff across the University and former staff within the Centre whose work helped to produce these resources.