Goals to Grades Connections :
Establish a logical agreement of goals and objectives, flowing to measures of performance, criteria, and grading. A formidable obstacle every teacher faces is how to analyze the content of a course, predetermine the outcomes desired, and communicate the necessary performance expectations to the learners in a detailed, congruous syllabus that logically connects goals to the measures for grades. That is, the objectives follow from the goals, the requirements are demonstrations of performance of those objectives, and the evaluation methods reflect attainment of the objectives to measurable criteria. This is rarely simple. At times teachers need their own cooperative learning groups in order to solve the myriad problems in coordinating course goals, uncovering the traditional discontinuities between goals and grading, and achieving assessment clarity. These are the basic criteria for the task:
• Goals Stated as Outcomes, Not Processes (25): Goals for the course are agreed to by the other faculty in the instructional unit to achieve outcomes desired from an integrated program of study. Process statements, such as 'students will participate in....' or 'students will undertake...' are avoided. Outcomes say that, at the end, students will be capable of doing 'x.'
• Objectives are Performances (26): Performances are actual behaviors or classes of behaviors that indicate the presence of the alleged ability that generally are agreed upon by the faculty of the instructional unit. These are the abilities that constitute each goal. Each is formulated using active, measurable verbs from Bloom's Taxonomy (knowledge, comprehension, application, analysis, synthesis, evaluation) and placed at the level of the taxonomy that reflects the amount of time allocated.
• Requirements are Detailed in Writing: All desired learner outputs, including the criteria for success and relative weights, are clearly specified to learners in advance.
• Grades are Referenced to Criteria (27): Learner achievement is measured with respect to a specified standard of quality, on a continuum from zero to perfection, not a percentage comparison to other learner's achievements.