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Assessment of JiTT Responses

There are several choices you'll need to make in assigning credit for your students' responses to JiTT questions:

  • How much will JiTT responses "count" toward course grades?
  • Will you grade all of the JiTT exercises, or a random selection?
  • How will you assign points? Will you grade for correctness or for effort?

How Much Will JiTT Count?

It is recommended that instructors create an incentive for students to answer the Just-in-Time Teaching warm-up questions. By counting the warm-ups as part of the final grade (anywhere from 5% to 30% or higher), the students are encouraged to do the readings and think about the questions before responding. How much your assignments need to count to provide this incentive depends on your students and on how many JiTT assignments you use during the term.

All or Some?

If you have very large classes, it may be difficult for you to grade all of your students' responses for every JiTT exercise. There are several ways to decrease the amount of grading you do, while maintaining the number of JiTT exercises you use:

  • You can grade only a random selection of the JiTT exercises you assign during the course.
  • You can grade responses from a random selection of students for each exercise.
  • You can award grades for completion, rather than accuracy of answers (see below).
As long as your random selections are random, either of the first two methods is fair, though occasionally students don't see it that way.

A Grade for Work or Effort?

There is a variety of methods that can be used to give credit for the JiTT assignments. Assignments may be graded on level of completion, not accuracy of the answer. In other words, students who demonstrate that they have thought about a question receive full points even if the answer is wrong. Kathy Marrs at IUPUI makes her WarmUp questions worth 6 points, and students are not graded for 'right' or 'wrong' answers (6 points are given to all students who respond by the deadline to WarmUps).

However, in analyzing student responses to warmups for research purposes, she has found a rubric to be helpful in determining any misconceptions a student might have, how thoroughly the students were able to answer a question, how much they used resources available to them, and even how well a particular WarmUp question was constructed.

Example Rubric

Marrs et al. (2003) reports a JiTT scoring rubric adapted from de Caprariis et al., 2001 :
1—Student says he / she does not know how to answer the WarmUp question.
2—Student tries to answer the WarmUp question but does not show evidence of any previous knowledge to assist in answering. Student may reveal misconceptions about concepts. Student does not use any information from the text or lecture notes to answer the question. (Incorrect answer)
3—Student shows some prior knowledge and may use terminology to answer the WarmUp question. Student does not use appropriate information from the text or lecture notes to answer the question. (May be partially correct but still incomplete).
4—Student answers the WarmUp question correctly and completely. Student incorporates information from the text or class notes into the answer. Student may look for answer outside the class (web, etc).


de Caprariis et al., 2001 . "Monitoring the Benefits of Active Learning Exercises in Introductory Survey Courses in Science: An Attempt to Improve the Education of Prospective Public School Teachers." The Journal of Scholarship of Teaching and Learning, v. 1, n. 1, p. 13-23.

Marrs, K.A., Blake, R.E., and Gavrin, D. (2003). "Web-Based Warm Up Exercises in Just-in-Time Teaching." Journal of College Science Teaching, v. 33, n. 1, p. 42-47.