Reverse detail from Kakelbont MS 1, a fifteenth-century French Psalter. This image is in the public domain. Daniel Paul O'Donnell

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Grading Rubric for Old English to Modern English Translations

Posted: Nov 18, 2006 16:11;
Last Modified: Jan 04, 2015 13:01


The following explains the criteria I use in grading most Old English translations submitted as part of tests, quizzes, homework assignments, or exams. This rubric is a guideline, not a contract: few translations will meet the criteria for any one grade exactly; some may have aspects that affect their quality that are not listed here. On the whole, however, you should find that translations that show the qualities listed here receive the corresponding grade.

I follow the following procedure in assigning your work a grade:

  1. I evaluate the translation according to the rubric (below) and assign a letter grade.
  2. Using the “conventional value” row of my grade table, I convert the letter grade to a percentage score.
  3. I calculate your final score on the test by multiplying this percentage by the number of points available.

So, if your translation on a 10 point question earned a B- according the rubric below, then your score on the question would be 7.6/10 (the conventional value of a B- is 76%; 76% of 10 marks is 7.6).

As always, please feel free to ask if you have any questions.



Comment [2]

  1. Lolin Cervantes (Tue Mar 9, 2010 (13:24:01)) [PermLink]:

    Hello Dr. O’Donnell:
    I was wondering if you could give me the references you used to put together your translation scoring rubric. I would like to use it for my own work and I want to know the name of the authors’ works that helped you with the rubric

    Lolin Cervantes

  2. Dan (Wed Mar 10, 2010 (09:53:25)) [PermLink]:

    Hi Lolin,

    I learned about rubrics and how to use and write them from Robert Runte in our faculty of education. And in the case of my essay rubric I used some material he’d distributed to members of the faculty association.

    This translation rubric was inspired by what I learned from him. But the precise details came from personal observation: I.e. I sat down with a couple of batches of translations and tried to characterise what I was using to award the different grades (the big tip I got from Professor Runte was that I should define each grade level on its own terms rather than in terms of its deviation from perfect—so I implemented that here as well).



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