I love how your post captures the essence of alternative grading practices while illustrating how difficult they are to define (or how difficult it is to agree on the definitions), and at the same time, how important it is to try.

I am currently working on a research/action project in which we implement and assess some « pratiques de notation alternatives », in higher education in French Canada. I would like to translate and cite your post here. Would you allow it ?

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Feb 5Liked by David Clark

I'm working on an essay about ungrading right now, so I searched the term on Twitter, as I periodically do, just to see what the current discourse is. Which led me to this blog post and to spitting out my grits when I saw my name. 😂 One additional point I'd like to make is that I *personally* don't think that collaborative grading is a synonym for ungrading. For me, collaborative grading is one of multiple pedagogical *practices* that emulate the ungrading *philosophy.* If we are talking Venn diagrams, collaborative grading (at least as I use it), is fully within the larger circle of ungrading. That being said, I know that many people use them as synonyms. I just don't happen to, which is funny since my name is the one that has been attached to the collaborative grading concept. 🙃

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This made me laugh at my desk: "Specifications-Based Grading: Not actually a thing." Thanks for the Monday giggle. 😂

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Terminology needs to be precise and yours isn't. On most of the rest of what you just wrote we are going to have to agree to disagree but I would love to be able to discuss this and other grading issues in person one day. I think what you are doing at the college level is great, but you appear to not understand what is happening at the K-12 level and how well it supports what you are doing at the college level. We should exchange books. Is yours published yet? We are both singing from the same song book but we are just singing different songs.

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We need to be clear that marks and grades are different and not use one term with a double meaning. Not defining terms clearly and using terms with double meanings makes it difficult to have useful professional dialogue> Unfortunately, common usage in the US uses grade with a double meaning and in Canada mark is commonly used with double meaning.

Her in ( ) are the reasons why I think your definition of mark is poor.

A letter, symbol, Yes or short phrase (No, a phrase is feedback) used to indicate a student’s progress on a standard or specifications or on a test, project, or assignment. Similar to a grade (No, they are different processes and have different purposes,) but primarily used as a short summary of feedback rather than a summative judgment. (They should be summative because formative assessments should be “no mark, comment only.”) Marks typically reflect a binary choice between meeting the requirements or not. (No, they indicate how well a student achieved on a standard or an assessment, e.g., 7/10 or a rubric score) Examples include “Satisfactory”, “Meets (or exceeds) expectations”, “Progressing”, “Needs new attempt” (Those are labels for levels of performance, not marks.)

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Very pleased to see this glossary.

Why do say "be aware that SBG can look quite different in K-12 education?" The principles and essentials of Standards-Based Grading are the same whether it is Kindergarten or 4th year college.

It was good to see you define "mark" but if you are going to define mark (poorly) you also need to. define "Grade." How about these definitions?

Mark/Score: the number or letter placed on any single student assessment (test or performance) to indicate the quality of achievement demonstrated.

Grade: the symbol (number or letter) reported at the end of a period of time as a summary statement of student performance.

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