A Fairer Way to Grade Group Presentations

Adam Sanford, Undergrad Made Easier

One of the reasons that students hate group work is that they don't want a free rider or someone who didn't do very well to drag down their grade. This is one way to counteract that problem. 

Divide the group's score into two parts: individual scores, and the group score. Each part is worth 50% of the grade, or 50 points.

On the day of the presentation, provide students with a sheet to tell you who did which part of the group presentation. For example: John did the research, Jaime did the presenting, and Jorge created the powerpoint slides. 

Tell the students that they have to introduce themselves with their full names before they start presenting. As they present, assess how well John did his research by seeing if he's cited the sources and given them correct credit; assess Jamie's ability to present well; and assess the quality of Jorge's powerpoint slides out of 50 points. (Remember that a 44 would be a B+, a 35 a C-, and so forth.) 

After the presentation, add up each individual score and average the total across all scores. This is the group score. Each individual's grade is now individual score + group score out of 100. 

To ensure that free riders do not get credit, give anyone who was listed by the group as "didn't do anything" or "came to meetings but never contributed" the group score only, and an individual score of 0. (Do not include the 0 in the group's overall grade average.) This controls for free riders, and is fair to the rest of the group.