# How are assignments scored? (Long version)

**How many points is each multiple-choice and short-answer question worth?**

Each assessment question on a CommonLit assignment is worth the same amount of points (this includes Part A questions, Part B questions, and short-answer questions) for a total score of 100 points. For example, if a text has 4 assessment questions (say, a regular multiple-choice question, a Part A multiple-choice question, a Part B multiple-choice question, and a short-answer question), each question is worth 25 percentage points. If a text has 10 assessment questions, each question is worth 10 percentage points, and so on.

To find out the point value for a particular question, simply divide 100 by the number of assessment questions on a particular assignment. (Note: This does become a bit more complicated when a text has Part A/Part B questions. See below for more information.)

**How are Part A/Part B questions scored?**

Imagine an assignment with 5 assessment questions, including one Part A question and one Part B question. These questions are related (in other words, a student’s success on Part B depends upon his or her success on Part A). Let’s say a student correctly answers all 3 of the other questions on the assignment. Here is how the scoring works:

If the student gets Part A correct and Part B correct, then he or she will receive full credit for both questions. The score for this assignment would be a 5/5 (100%).

If the student gets Part A correct and Part B incorrect, he or she will receive full credit for Part A, and zero credit for Part B. The score for this assignment would be a 4/5 (80%).

If the student gets Part A incorrect, then he or she will get zero credit for Part A, and Part B will be omitted from the final assignment score -- regardless of whether the student’s answer for Part B is correct or incorrect. That means it does not count towards the student’s score at all (it cannot hurt nor help them). This is because Part B’s correctness is dependent upon Part A being correct. In this case, the score for this assignment would be a 3/4 (75%).

### What about Part A/Part B questions where Part B is a short-answer question that requires teacher scoring?

Here’s an example:

1. PART A: Which of the following describes a main idea of the article?

a. Wisdom is no match for cleverness.

b. Sometimes the most unsuspecting characters are the wisest.

c. Only fools ask to be made to look foolish.

d. Everyone has the potential to be a hero.

2. PART B: Cite evidence from the text to support your answer to PART A.

[Enter short answer. Answers will be scored on a 0-4 rubric].

Short answers are always graded by the teacher. In the case above, a student who answers Part A correctly receives full credit for Part A, and the teacher determines his or her score on Part B. A student who answers Part A incorrectly receives zero credit for Part A. In this case, the student can receive points for Part B, depending on how the teacher scores the answer.

## How are multi-select questions (multiple-choice questions that require students to choose more than one correct answer) scored?

An example of a multi-select question would be, “Which TWO of the following answer choices best captures a main idea from the poem?” On these types of questions, students receive full credit for choosing both of the correct answers, half credit if they choose one correct answer, and zero credit if they choose neither of the correct answers.

If a student chooses only one answer choice instead of two, the student will get half-credit if the answer that he or she chose was one of the two correct answers, or zero credit if they chose neither of the two correct answers.

Alternatively, if the student selects more than two answers, he or she will receive zero credit for the question, regardless of whether or not he or she selected any of the correct answers.

## How are multi-select Part A/Part B questions scored?

Imagine a 5-question assignment with one Part A multi-select question and one Part B multi-select question. These questions are related (in other words, a student’s success on Part B depends upon his or her success on Part A). Let’s say a student correctly answers all 3 of the other questions on the assignment. Here is how the scoring works:

- If Part A has TWO correct answers, the student will receive full credit for Part A; If Part B has TWO correct answers, the student will receive full credit for Part B. The score for this assignment would be a 5/5 (100%).
- If Part A has TWO correct answers, the student will receive full credit for Part A; If Part B has only ONE correct answer, the student will receive half credit for Part B. The score for this assignment would be a 4.5/5 (90%).
- If Part A has TWO correct answers, the student will receive full credit for Part A; If Part B has NO correct answers, the student will receive zero credit for Part B. The score for this assignment would be a 4/5 (80%).
- If Part A has ONE correct answer, the student will receive half credit for Part A; If Part B has TWO correct answers, the student will receive full credit for Part B. The score for this assignment would be a 4.5/5 (90%).
- If Part A has ONE correct answer, the student will receive half credit for Part A; If Part B has ONE correct answer, the student will receive half credit for Part B. The score for this assignment would be a 4/5 (80%).
- If Part A has ONE correct answer, the student will receive half credit for Part A; If Part B has NO correct answers, the student will receive zero credit for Part B. The score for this assignment would be a 3.5/5 (70%).
- If Part A has NO correct answers, the student will receive zero credit for Part A, and Part B will be completely omitted from all data calculations regardless of whether or not the student chose any correct answers. That means that Part B will not count towards the student’s score at all (it cannot hurt nor help them). This is because Part B’s correctness is dependent upon Part A being correct. In this case, the score for this assignment would be a 3/4 (75%).

## How does the short answer grading scale work?

CommonLit lessons use a four-point scale for short answer responses, and teachers are encouraged to conform their grading to the policies and templates in use in their schools. While we provide an exemplar guide for each question, we leave it up to teachers to determine whether a student meets or does not meet these expectations.

Actual point values for short-answer responses depend on the number of questions in the assignment. A short-answer question is worth the same number of points as the multiple-choice questions. For example, say an assignment has 4 assessment questions (3 multiple-choice and 1 short-answer question). In this case, each question is worth 25 percentage points. Scoring the short-answer responses for this assignment would work as follows:

- Score of 0 = 0% credit (so, in this case, 0 percentage points out of 25)
- Score of 1 = 25% credit (in this case, 6.25 percentage points out of 25)
- Score of 2 = 50% credit (in this case, 12.5 percentage points out of 25)
- Score of 3 = 75% credit (in this case, 18.75 percentage points out of 25)
- Score of 4 = 100% credit (in this case, 25 percentage points out of 25)