What We Really Value traces the origins of traditional
rubrics within the theoretical and historical circumstances out of
which they emerged, then holds rubrics up for critical scrutiny in
the context of contemporary developments in the field. As an
alternative to the generic character and decontextualized function
of scoring guides, he offers dynamic criteria mapping, a form of
qualitative inquiry by which writing programs (as well as
individual instructors) can portray their rhetorical values with
more ethical integrity and more pedagogical utility than rubrics
To illustrate the complex and indispensable insights this method
can provide, Broad details findings from his study of eighty-nine
distinct and substantial criteria for evaluation at work in the
introductory composition program at "City University." These
chapters are filled with the voices of composition instructors
debating and reflecting on the nature, interplay, and relative
importance of the many criteria by which they judged students'
texts. Broad concludes his book with specific strategies that can
help writing instructors and programs to discover, negotiate, map,
and express a more robust truth about what they value in their
students' rhetorical performances.
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