Thesis

Student generated writing rubrics and the effects on engagement and self-efficacy

High stakes testing and accountability in schools has forced teachers into a
 tight corner when it comes to instruction. Districts, in fear of low testing scores, adopt
 more teacher-centered approaches to all content areas where successful testing is imperative,
 including the English language arts and writing. Disengagement, low motivation,
 and students’ low self-efficacy are a result. This research sought to find a more
 student-centered form of formative assessment that could be used during the writing
 process. A learning segment was created using an instructional rubric in which student
 generate the criteria by which they were assessed using different levels of student work
 examples as models. Students were then explicitly taught how to assess their own writing
 using this criterion. The research showed that students would not only have a better
 understanding of what was expected of them, but were also given the skills to monitor and make adjustments to their own learning, making them more autonomous in their
 writing. This, in turn, created improved motivation and a greater sense of self-efficacy.

High stakes testing and accountability in schools has forced teachers into a tight corner when it comes to instruction. Districts, in fear of low testing scores, adopt more teacher-centered approaches to all content areas where successful testing is imperative, including the English language arts and writing. Disengagement, low motivation, and students’ low self-efficacy are a result. This research sought to find a more student-centered form of formative assessment that could be used during the writing process. A learning segment was created using an instructional rubric in which student generate the criteria by which they were assessed using different levels of student work examples as models. Students were then explicitly taught how to assess their own writing using this criterion. The research showed that students would not only have a better understanding of what was expected of them, but were also given the skills to monitor and make adjustments to their own learning, making them more autonomous in their writing. This, in turn, created improved motivation and a greater sense of self-efficacy.

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