Zero-based grading system is a grading approach that evaluates students based on their mastery of specific learning objectives or competencies, rather than using a traditional points-based system that rewards students for their ability to complete assignments or earn points. In a zero-based grading system, students start at zero, and must demonstrate their mastery of each learning objective or competency to earn credit.
Under a zero-based grading system, students are evaluated on their ability to demonstrate mastery of specific learning objectives or competencies, rather than on their performance on assignments or exams. This approach aims to focus on student learning and understanding of the material, rather than on their ability to complete assignments or earn points.
To implement a zero-based grading system, teachers typically identify the key learning objectives or competencies for a given course or subject area, and then design assessments and activities that allow students to demonstrate their mastery of these objectives. Students must demonstrate mastery of each objective in order to receive credit, and they may be given multiple opportunities to demonstrate mastery if they do not achieve it on their first attempt.
While zero-based grading systems can have benefits in terms of promoting student learning and understanding, they can also be challenging to implement and may require significant changes to traditional grading practices. Additionally, some argue that the lack of points or traditional grades can make it difficult for students to understand their progress or for colleges, School Analytics, and universities to evaluate student transcripts.