Photos of Pacific Coast, Cascades, Columbia Plateau
Geology of the Pacific Northwest

Lab Rubric

Explanation

The lab assignments provide hands-on experiences that are key to learning the geology of the Pacific Northwest. The labs earn more of the total course credit than any other type of assignment. There are several steps to achieve the learning outcomes from the labs at the highest possible level.

It is important to distinguish between the online lab assignments and the lab answer forms in the online classroom. Each lab assignment in the schedule on the course website provides the instructions, the images, and the questions. Every week, you enter your lab answers for grading in the lab answer form in the online classroom. Some weeks you will also print from the lab assignment maps or diagrams that you will mark or label as instructed and turn in for grading via postal mail.

In the labs, you will be applying concepts from the lectures. Therefore, before undertaking a weekly lab assignment, read the lecture for that week, along with the specific Basics and Focus Pages that are part of the lecture.

Once you have completely read the lecture and its associated Basics and Focus Pages, open the lab assignment and study it carefully. Be sure to thoroughly read the virtual field site(s) that is linked to the lab assignment. As you study the lab and its virtual field sites, develop the habit of writing down your answers to the numbered questions to keep as notes to use when completing the lab answer form.

There are two steps to successfully completing and submitting each lab's lab answer form: a pre-lab answer form and a lab answer form. Prior to the last three days of the week, fill in a complete set of answers to the lab problems using the pre-lab answer form. Then, once you have sharpened your focus and studied the lab solutions to fill in what you did not understand the first time, based on your pre-lab results, complete and submit the lab answer form during the last three days of the week, submitting it for grading prior to the week coming to an end.

The essay questions are particularly important. The answers you write to the essay questions are expected to meet the writing standards for the course, including citing your sources of information for each answer. Note that essay answers left blank generate negative scores, to the negative of the amount the question is worth (but not so much as to make the overall lab score negative.) This is to properly, and fairly, distinguish the zeroes on answers that were composed and submitted but turned out to be incorrect, from a failure to compose and attempt an answer. It is also to prevent lab answer form scores based mostly on multiple choice questions and only a few essay questions from being gamed by students guessing on the multiple choice questions to generate at least a few points, while leaving the essay questions unanswered.

Once you feel ready to submit answers to all the lab questions, open the lab answer form in the online classroom, enter all your answers, and submit it for scoring. Study the automatically scored result for your online lab answer form.

You cannot open the lab answer form once the week is over and its due date has passed.

Rubric for Lab Answer Forms in PNW Geology
Exemplary Adequate Developing Underdeveloped
  • Answers submitted in online Lab Answer Form
  • All questions answered
  • Pre-Lab Answer Form submitted prior to its due date expiring
  • Lab Answer Form submitted prior to the end of the online week     
  • Fill-in-the-blank answers spelled correctly
  • All or nearly all answers correct (on lab)
  • Answers to most questions based on reading the lab assignment and its linked virtual field sites
  • Answers to essay questions based primarily on PNW Geology course web pages
  • Answers to essay questions meet writing standards at exemplary level, including always, without exception, brief citations (mentions) of sources, no copying, and no paraphrasing (no slightly reworded answers taken from outside sources)
  • Answers submitted in online Lab Answer Form
  • All questions answered
  • Pre-Lab Answer Form submitted prior to its due date expiring 
  • Lab Answer Form submitted prior to the end of the online week  
  • Fill-in-the-blank answers spelled correctly
  • Over 70% of answers correct (on second attempt)
  • Answers to all questions based on reading the lab assignment and its linked virtual field sites
  • Answers to essay questions based largely on PNW Geology course web pages
  • Answers to essay questions meet writing standards at exemplary level, including always, without exception, brief citations (mentions) of sources, no copying, and no paraphrasing (no slightly reworded answers taken from outside sources)
  • Answers submitted in online Lab Answer Form
  • All questions answered
  • Not all fill-in-the-blank answers spelled correctly
  • Over 60% of answers correct (on second attempt)
  • Answers to all questions based on reading the lab assignment and its linked virtual field sites
  • Answers to essay questions not based primarily on PNW Geology course web pages
  • Answers to essay questions meet writing standards at adequate or developing level
  • Some or all essay questions not answered at all
    • (negative scores, down to equivalent of possible positive score, result from not attempting answers on essay questions; this is to provide fair treatment for students who at least try to answer the questions even if their answers are incorrect; another reason is to encourage boldness and bravery)
  • Answers submitted in online Lab Answer Form
  • Not all questions answered
  • Not all fill-in-the-blank answers spelled correctly
  • Over 50% of answers correct correct (on second attempt)
  • Did not read the lab assignment and its linked virtual field sites
  • Answers to essay questions not based primarily on PNW Geology course web pages
  • Answers to essay questions meet writing at developing level or lower
  • Some or all essay questions not answered at all
    • (negative scores, down to equivalent of possible positive score, result from not attempting answers on essay questions; this is to provide fair treatment for students who at least try to answer the questions even if their answers are incorrect; another reason is to encourage boldness and bravery)

 

Checklist for lab answer forms

A worthy lab answer form will:

 

Rubric for Lab Maps and Diagrams in PNW Geology
Exemplary Adequate Developing Underdeveloped
  • Submitted on paper.
  • Your name at the top of each and every page.
  • Submitted on time (if mailed, postmarked no later than day after lab is due).
  • Title above each map or diagram.
  • Follows all instructions on what to mark, what to draw, and how to label.
  • All lines and symbols on map or diagram are precise and accurate.
  • Map key included on map page.
  • Labels are correct and complete.
  • Labels are neatly and legibly written.
  • It is clear what each label is referring to.
  • Submitted on paper.
  • Your name on each page.
  • Submitted on time (if mailed, postmarked no later than day after lab is due).
  • Follows nearly all instructions on what to mark, what to draw, and how to label.
  • Most lines and symbols on map or diagram are precise and accurate.
  • Most labels are correct and complete.
  • Labels are legible.
  • It is clear what each label is referring to.
  • Submitted on paper.
  • Your name on each page.
  • Submitted on time (if mailed, postmarked no later than day after lab is due).
  • Follows a majority of instructions on what to mark, what to draw, and how to label.
  • Some lines and symbols on map or diagram are precise and accurate.
  • Some labels are correct and complete.
  • Labels are legible.
  • It is clear what most labels are referring to.
  • Submitted digitally, not on paper.
  • Your name on only one of the pages.
  • Submitted a day or two late.
  • Your name not on each page.
  • Follows only part of the instructions on what to mark, what to draw, and how to label.
  • Numerous lines and symbols on map or diagram are imprecise and inaccurate.
  • Some labels are correct and complete, some are not.
  • Labels are not all easy to read.
  • It is not clear what some labels are referring to.

 

Checklist for lab maps and diagrams

A worthy map or diagram will:

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Geology of the Pacific Northwest
Lab Rubric
updated: 12/17/2020