Title Discussion Rubric—Middle School

Description A rubric in student language used by middle school students to self-assess their discussion skills.

Keywords Listening, speaking, participation, opinions, active listening, reflect

Instructions Use this rubric to self-assess your discussion skills.

Categories

Grade Level 6-8

Subject

Type of Assessment

 

4

3

2

1

Engaging in Discussions

I enjoy class discussions because I learn from hearing other people’s points of view. I connect what other people say to my own experiences and opinions. I draw conclusions about the topic being discussed.

I enjoy class discussions because I am interested in hearing and thinking about what my classmates have to say about a topic.

I sometimes enjoy class discussions.

Sometimes, I think about what my classmates are saying during a discussion, but at other times, my mind wanders.

I sometimes enjoy class discussions because I can just listen or daydream and not do any work.
OR
I think discussions are usually a waste of time.

Listening with Intention

I listen to my classmates’ comments with an open mind. I think carefully about how my classmates support their opinions.

I think about the validity of what my classmates say.

Sometimes, I think about my classmates’ comments to determine whether the comments are correct.

I usually think about something else during a discussion.

Listening Actively

When I am not talking, I show I am interested in a discussion by taking notes and exhibiting appropriate body language, such as making eye contact, smiling, and nodding.

I show that I am paying attention to a discussion with my body language.

I usually show that I am paying attention to a discussion, but sometimes, I look like I am not interested.

I often look like I am not paying attention during a discussion.

Contributing

I contribute my own appropriate experiences and opinions when they fit naturally into the flow of a discussion.

I contribute my own experiences and opinions appropriately to a discussion.

Sometimes, I contribute my experiences and opinions to a discussion.

I rarely contribute my experiences and opinions to a discussion.

Creating Synergy

I build on other people’s comments by questioning, summarizing, paraphrase, and elaborating.

I build on other people’s comments.

My comments are usually on topic, but sometimes they do not connect to what the speakers before me said.

My comments are often off the topic and meant to disrupt the discussion, not enhance it.

Supporting Opinions

I explain why my opinions and comments are worth listening to by using good reasoning and referring to reliable sources of information.

I support my comments with good reasons and reliable sources.

Sometimes, I give good reasons for my opinions, but at other times, my reasoning is not sound and my sources are not credible.

I often express opinions that have no credible support.

Collaborating

I enthusiastically contribute to discussions. I am careful not to talk too much. I always encourage my classmates to speak by asking them questions and noticing when they look like they have something to say.

I speak during discussions, but not too much. I encourage my classmates to speak by asking questions.

I sometimes speak too little or too much during discussions.

I hardly ever speak during a discussion.
OR
I monopolize the discussion by speaking way too much.

Handling Disagreements

I use a variety of strategies to respond to a disagreement, such as questioning and humor. I listen carefully when people disagree with my opinions to see if they have valid points. I change my mind when other people’s arguments are convincing.

I consider different viewpoints and respond or listen to them respectfully when a disagreement arises.

Sometimes, I respond and listen respectfully to disagreements with my classmates, but at other times, I take disagreements personally and get upset.

I often get angry and respond inappropriately to disagreements with my classmates.

Reflecting on Learning

I think back on what I learned in a discussion and use the learning in my future studies.

I think back on what I have learned in a discussion.

Sometimes, I think about what I learned in a discussion.

I rarely think about what I learned in a discussion.

Self-Assessing Participation

I assess my participation in a discussion and set goals for how I could be a better participant in the future.

I think about how well I did in a discussion and set goals for improvement.

Sometimes, I reflect on my participation in a discussion and think about how I could do better the next time.

I hardly ever think about how I could improve my participation in discussions.