Grading is one of the most hotly debated topics in education, and grading practices themselves are largely based on tradition, instinct, or personal history or philosophy. But to be effective, grading policies and practices must be based on trustworthy research evidence.
Enter this book: a review of 100-plus years of grading research that presents the broadest and most comprehensive summary of research on grading and reporting available to date, with clear takeaways for learning and teaching. Edited by Thomas R. Guskey and Susan M. Brookhart, this indispensable guide features thoughtful, thorough dives into the research from a distinguished team of scholars, geared to a broad range of stakeholders, including teachers, school leaders, policymakers, and researchers. Each chapter addresses a different area of grading research and describes how the major findings in that area might be leveraged to improve grading policy and practice. Ultimately, Guskey and Brookhart identify four themes emerging from the research that can guide these efforts:
- Start with clear learning goals,
- Focus on the feedback function of grades,
- Limit the number of grade categories, and
- Provide multiple grades that reflect product, process, and progress criteria.
By distilling the vast body of research evidence into meaningful, actionable findings and strategies, this book is the jump-start all stakeholders need to build a better understanding of what works--and where to go from here.
About the Author
Thomas R. Guskey, Ph.D., is Professor of Educational Psychology in the College of Education at the University of Kentucky. A graduate of the University of Chicago, he began his career in education as a middle school teacher, served as an administrator in Chicago Public Schools, and was the first Director of the Center for the Improvement of Teaching and Learning, a national educational research center. He is the author/editor of 18 books and over 200 articles published in prominent research journals as well as Educational Leadership, Kappan, and School Administrator. Dr. Guskey served on the Policy Research Team of the National Commission on Teaching & America's Future, on the Task Force to develop the National Standards for Staff Development, and recently was named a Fellow in the American Educational Research Association, which also honored him in 2006 for his outstanding contribution relating research to practice. His most recent books include Developing Standards-Based Report Cards (2010), Practical Solutions for Serious Problems in Standards-Based Grading (Ed.) (2009), The Principal as Assessment Leader (Ed.) (2009), The Teacher as Assessment Leader (Ed.) (2009), and Benjamin S. Bloom: Portraits of an Educator (Ed.) (2006).
Susan M. Brookhart, PhD, is professor emerita in the School of Education at Duquesne University and an independent educational consultant and author based in Los Angeles, California. She was the 2007-2009 editor of Educational Measurement: Issues and Practice and is currently an associate editor of Applied Measurement in Education. She is author or coauthor of 20 books and more than 80 articles and book chapters on classroom assessment, teacher professional development, and evaluation. She has been named the 2014 Jason Millman Scholar by the Consortium for Research on Educational Assessment and Teaching Effectiveness and is the recipient of the 2015 Samuel J. Messick Memorial Lecture Award from ETS/TOEFL. She also works with schools, districts, regional educational service units, universities, and states doing professional development. Brookhart received her PhD in educational research and evaluation from The Ohio State University, after teaching in both elementary and middle schools.