King's College London

Research portal

The use of assessment rubrics to enhance feedback in higher education: An integrative literature review

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)8-13
Number of pages6
JournalNurse Education Today
Early online date30 Jun 2018
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2018

King's Authors


Objective: To explore the literature relating to the use of rubrics in Higher Education. Design: A systematic search using three databases was undertaken, the question used to guide the search strategy was: What are the benefits and challenges of using rubrics as part of the assessment process in Higher Education? Data Sources: Three electronic databases were searched: British Education Index, Education Resources Information Centre and the Cumulative Index to Nursing and Allied Health Literature. Review Methods: The review utilised an integrative approach to the retrieval and appraisal of the research. As the papers retrieved used different methodologies to explore the use of rubrics they were analysed using either thematic analysis or narrative synthesis. Results: Fifteen papers were identified that met the inclusion and exclusion criteria for the review, these spanned a range of disciplines including education, medicine and design. Four main themes related to the use of rubrics were identified: the reliability and validity of the rubric, student performance, students’ perceptions of the rubric and the implementation of the rubric. Conclusions: Student self-assessment, self-regulation and understanding of assessment criteria were all found to be enhanced by the use of rubrics. However students also reported that rubrics could be restrictive and student stress related to assessments could be increased. Student involvement in the design and implementation of a rubric was identified as being critical to their success. Rubrics were judged favourably by the studies reviewed in this paper, however they were found to be most effective when used as part of an overall assessment strategy that was co-created with students.

View graph of relations

© 2018 King's College London | Strand | London WC2R 2LS | England | United Kingdom | Tel +44 (0)20 7836 5454