Physics Department Grading Rubric

Assignment Category

Letter Grade and Explanation

A

B

C

D

F

Problem Sets
and Tests

Understands and utilizes correct physical principles and appropriate mathematical tools to correctly solve problems or answer questions.

Typically understands and uses correct physical principles and appropriate mathematical tools, but makes significant errors.

Displays a basic understanding of the material, but often confuses physical principles, misuses equations, or fails to perform the required mathematical steps.

Typically does not correctly apply physical principles or mathematical tools.

Does not apply appropriate principles or mathematical tools in a meaningful way.

Labs

Correctly performs, analyzes, and discusses the given experiments with clear skill and understanding.

Performs, analyzes, and discusses the given experiments with some skill and understanding, but does not completely troubleshoot problems or understand results.

Partially performs, analyzes, and discusses the given experiments, but does little troubleshooting or analysis.

Does not correctly perform, analyze, and discuss most of the experiment.

Does not perform or analyze the experiment.

Research

Recognizes and clearly defines problems and is able to propose/implement multiple solutions. Displays true craftsmanship, creativity, and skill.

Usually identifies at least one possible solution. Displays some evidence of skill.

Identifies problems, but rarely develops successful solutions. Does not adequately carry out given task.

Does not typically identify problems or offer solutions. Does not carry out given task.

Does not carry out given task.

Communication*

Clearly states background, significance, methodology, results, and discussion using appropriate language and figures in a polished work.

States background, significance, methodology, results, and discussion using mostly appropriate language and figures.

Does not sufficiently state background, significance, methodology, results, and
  discussion. Language and/or figures need significant improvement.

Much of background, significance, methodology, results, or discussion is missing, unclear, or incorrect. Inappropriate language and/or figures.

Little or no reasonable explanations are given. Little or no appropriate language or figures used.

*Communication grades will be incorporated into each of the previous categories as defined in class.

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