How to Create a Rubric to Assess Student Videos

Eliza Talvola


Using video in the classroom helps to keep students engaged and add make your lessons more memorable. Students can even make their own videos to share what they've learned in a way that is exciting and fun. But what do you do when it comes to grading students’ video projects?

One of the easiest ways to show students what’s expected of them is to create a rubric breaking down the different elements of a video project. You may have already created rubrics for other class projects — ones that involved posters, labs, or group work. Rubrics for video projects are similar. The medium may be different, but the learning and thinking students do are still there for you to assess.

Ways to assess a video:

You can use video projects at many different levels. Some of the elements in your rubric are going to be the same, whether you’re assigning a video to a high school physics class or using Animoto for a fourth grade vocabulary project.

Here are some things to include when developing a video project rubric:

  • Content: Clearly state what information and how much of it students should include. For example, in a biography project, students might be expected to include five interesting facts about their person in order to get the highest number of points on the rubric.

  • Images: Make sure your rubric states how many images you expect in an excellent, good, average, and poor project. You might want to add that those images should be relevant to the topic (e.g. no skateboards in a butterfly video) and appropriate. If you want to emphasize research skills, you could also require they use public domain images or cite their image sources.

  • Sources While this may not be necessary for very young students, middle and high school student videos can and should include a text slide with their bibliography or an accompanying paper bibliography.

  • Length: Just as you would set a page limit for an essay, you should set limits on video length, especially if you want to share the videos with the class. That length depends on your project — a simple “About Me” video project can be a minute long, while a more involved science or English assignment could be two to three minutes.

The style and flair of the video itself should really take second place to the student’s process — how a student researched the project, chose images, and organized their information. When your rubric reflects that, you’re truly assessing what a student learned.

Video project ideas

Creating Animoto accounts for you and your students is completely free! Once you have your free account set up, there are endless ways to strengthen your lessons using video. Here are some of our favorites.

Digital scavenger hunt

Take your lessons outside of the classroom with a digital scavanger hunt! Have your students find specific plants and animals, artichectural landmarks, historical features, and even shapes in their real-world environments and photograph them as they go. Then, they can add them to an exciting video that can be shared with the class using our Educational Presentation template.

Video autobiography or biography

Have your students research important figures throughout history or even share their own life stories with a video! The Self-Introduction template makes it easy to share the most important moments of one's life in a fun and engaging way.

Vocabulary videos

Put new vocabulary into action with a video! You can teach students new vocabulary words and then have students find real-world examples of them in real life. Or, let students share all the new words they've learned over summer break using the Vocabulary Lesson template.

Book trailers

Book trailers are a great way to get the story across in just a few short minutes. Whether starting from scratch on a brand new book or creating a summary of a favorite book, the Book Trailer template makes it simple.

Video presentations

Video presentations are a great way to showcase your learnings without the anxiety of a traditional presentation. They can be used in virtual classrooms or shared "IRL" to supplement student presentations. The Educational Presentation template is versatile, engaging, and easy to customize and share.

Sports recap

Extracurricular activities are part of a well-rounded education. Celebrate wins or even analyze your game with the Sports Recap template! It's a great way to increase school spirit and show students that you care.

Book reports

Hit your reading goals for the semester and make sure the lessons hit home with a book report! Rather than an extensive essay, the Book Report template hits on all the high-notes and most important elements of a particular book.

How are you grading your students’ Animoto videos? Let us know in our Facebook group, the Animoto Social Video Marketing Community.