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How to grade reflection?

All our tools are based on reflection. Reflection is highly personal and therefore difficult to assess. There are 4 options: letter grading, no grading, pass fail-grading and self-evaluation.

1. Letter grading

Studies show that clear grading rubrics can bias students’ reflections, as they might be writing to the rubric rather than expressing their true feelings. Also, grades can draw the attention away from the reflective practice, which is then counterproductive. We do not recommend letter grading for reflections.  

2. No grading

Some argue, that reflections are so personal, that learners shouldn’t have to share it with their educators or peers. Nevertheless, we have made the experience that students get bombarded with tasks in their university life, and if an assignment is not graded, it might get neglected. However, it is important to keep in mind that reflection assignments require trust between educator and learner, which needs some time to build.  

3. Pass/ fail grading

Some studies suggest pass/fail grading for reflection assignments. We also have made great experiences with “grading for completion,” which means that students pass as long as they submit something. That way, there is enough incentive for students to engage with the assignment, but not the pressure and bias that comes with letter grading.  

4. Self-evaluation

Some scholars suggest honest reflection can be a form of self-assessment. Self-assessment can be a great way to give students autonomy, and to build trust in the learner – educator relationship 



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