Context: Each week, students participated in a lab activity to demonstrate the principles of hydraulics and applications to civil engineering. Approximately half the assignments require a formal lab report be written in the form of a memo to a client. The lab grading rubric was developed to communicate the content requirements to students and to enhance consistency in grading these reports.
Reflection: This lab report grading rubric ties in with my teaching philosophy as it demonstrates my desire for grading to be more or less transparent for the students, and for students to receive feedback which enhances their learning of subject material. To improve the rubric, I would make it even more specific with regards to formatting and content. Through the process of grading student materials, I learned that while open-ended problems may encourage creativity and critical thinking, it is important to specify firm requirements in other areas. Receiving submissions of approximately equivalent effort is less likely and grading is more difficult without such requirements.
Copies of one set of lab reports and associated grading rubrics are attached below.