How to Give Effective Rationale-Style Feedback

Rationale-style feedback is used where scoring is more granular by question, often the case for assignments in science and math. For these assignments, you’ll be prompted to enter feedback next to each component. Your feedback should exhibit the same elements of effective feedback that you do for individual student feedback: goal-oriented, prioritized, actionable, and student/teacher-friendly.

Here’s what that looks like for rationale-style assignments:

AP Chemistry - free response Question

Effective Feedback Guidelines for Class Summaries

  1. Goal Oriented

    • Your feedback is aligned to the expectations laid out in the prompt and rubric

    • Your feedback uses the same language used in the rubric

    • Your feedback is objective (Avoid using phrases such as ‘I like how you…’)

    • Your feedback should directly address the particular content being covered

  2. Prioritized

    • Your feedback should provide an explanation of what point(s) the student earned

    • When a student does not earn a point, explain to the student why they did not earn the point(s)

  3. Actionable

    • When students miss a point, explain how they can earn the point

    • Use guiding questions to lead them to the correct answer

    • Use content-specific vocabulary so the student knows exactly what she/he needs to practice

    • If the answer is blank, explain to the student how she/he can begin to answer the question on their own. It’s most helpful to the student to assume that they need help knowing how to answer, not that they ran out of time.

  4. Student/Teacher-Friendly

    • Use positive, friendly language to encourage the student

    • Avoid using words such as ‘again’ that call attention to points missed earlier in the assignment and may be unintentionally discouraging

    • When possible, greet the student by name in the first rationale feedback box.


AP World History - Short Answer Question