Marking rubrics - are they the answer?

28 February 2024

Marking rubrics provide benefits for both students and teaching staff including providing clear guidance and increasing the consistency and efficiency of marking.

If you are new to using marking rubrics, you may be wondering whether marking rubrics give students the answers. 

Marking rubrics, while providing clear guidelines for assessment, do not give students the answers outright. Instead, they offer students a framework of expectations and criteria by which their work will be evaluated. Marking rubrics typically outline the specific qualities of excellent, proficient, basic, and inadequate performance, allowing students to understand what is required for success in their assessments.

The marking rubric itself does not provide the exact solutions or responses. Rather, it offers guidance on the quality of work expected, encouraging students to critically engage with the subject matter and demonstrate their knowledge and skills. Marking rubrics promote independent thinking, creativity, and problem-solving, as students must apply their knowledge and judgment to meet the criteria outlined in the marking rubric. Marking rubrics empower students to effectively plan, execute, and improve their assessments, fostering a deeper understanding of the subject matter and enhancing overall learning outcomes.

Now that you are feeling more comfortable that marking rubrics are not giving students the answer, you may be wondering if marking rubrics are the answer for you and how they will help with marking and feedback. 

Marking rubrics provide clear guidelines and criteria for you to assess student work. They outline specific expectations, criteria, and performance levels, and thus, facilitate transparent evaluation and feedback. Using marking rubrics will ensure consistency and fairness in the marking process, helping you to better articulate your expectations and provide students with a clear understanding of how their work is evaluated. The use of a marking rubric will also lead to efficiencies in marking.  

Teaching Quality has resources to help you develop marking rubrics for your assessment, including:

Once finalised, your marking rubric can be included with your assessment instructions and uploaded into your submission activity (e.g. Assignment) on your Akoraka | Learn course page.

For more guidance on designing marking rubrics and marking online, contact a member of Teaching Quality (



We acknowledge the use of ChatGPT ( in the writing of this teaching tip. We have used ChatGPT to assist with:

  • Writing: We generated text which was adapted for this teaching tip. 

The following prompts were input into ChatGPT:

  • Write a short informational paragraph on whether rubrics give students the answers or not. 
  • Write a short information paragraph on the purpose of university-level scoring rubrics.