Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Report Assessment

Man with Rubric

Assessment has been the theme of the past few weeks of my life.  Both in my ProGen group, in one my classes at school (I got to create a rubric for a project) and at work at Starbucks (where my store got a 98:-D).  One of the most important parts of any plan, but often the most overlooked.

The most thought of forms of assessment tend to be surveys and focus groups.  The best way to assess how well something worked is by using a rubric, which gives concrete standards along a scale.

If you are like me, you often wonder whether your genealogy reports are up to the proper standards.  Even if you use reference books, articles or websites while writing them, it can still be hard to tell if you have the correct information in it.  For our March ProGen assignment, we used the BCG rubric to edit everyones research report from the prior month.

Used for genealogists applying for certification, this rubric gives standards for nearly every genealogy report you could need.  It is very simple, but you have to remember, it is very black-and-white.  There is no grey.  Either you have the indicator or you do not.

Let's look at an example.  You have written a research report for a client or yourself.  Looking at indicator "CR6", what is the quality of the sources you used?  BCG wants you to have mainly used original sources and primary information.  Did you?  If yes, then you meet the standards.  If you used some of these sources, you partially met expectations.  If your sources are derivative, with secondary information, you did not meet the standard.  If you can't even tell what type of sources you used, or didn't use any, you need to go back to your genealogy reference books and learn more about sourcing your work and the importance there-of.

I was pleased to see I had hit most of the standards and now that I have this rubric, I believe all of my reports will be meeting or exceeding standards in the future.

Do your research reports meet the BCG standards?  Is there another set of standards you use instead?

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