EVALUATIVE RUBRIC FOR TEACHABLE UNIT
Criteria Level 3 Level 2 Level 1
PCR Cycle Sketch
Does the student Student can identify Student can identify Student does not
understand the importance temperature and effect the temperature for indicate temperature
of each temperature of temperature for each cycle, but cannot or effect of
change of one cycle of each step (including: explain the effect of temperature.
PCR? (Broad Broad Goal denature, anneal and the temperature
3; Specific Goal 1) extend). correctly.
Does the student Student can properly Student can identify Student does not
understand how primers identify the the primer annealing identify primer
initiate DNA replication? directionality of sites, but does not annealing sites.
(Broad Broad Goal 3; primers and the indicate the direction.
Specific Goal 1) extension steps.
Does the student Student shows proper Student shows Student shows
understand how the first intermediates and intermediate and final intermediate and final
extension occurs and how indicates final products but either the products but both
that leads to target DNA in products. intermediate or final products are incorrect.
later cycles? (Broad Broad products are incorrect.
Goal 3; Specific Goal 1)
Does the student Student can correctly Student can identify Student cannot
understand the idea of identify the ratio of the proper ratio in the differentiate between
amplification of target target to intermediate first few cycles, but target and
DNA? (Broad Broad Goal and predict the ratio cannot extend to 20 intermediate DNA.
3; Specific Goal 1) after 20 cycles and cycles OR cannot
how the DNA would predict how the gel
appear on the gel. would look.
Can the student state why The student can state The student The student does not
PCR is an appropriate why PCR is an understands understand the idea of
technique for appropriate technique amplification but not amplification.
amplification? (Broad for amplification of a the specificity of PCR.
Broad Goal 1; Specific specific DNA
Goal 1) sequence.
Can the student identify The student can The student can The student can
problems with components identify problems with identify the identify problems but
of a PCR reaction and components of a components but is not cannot use PCR
technically explain reaction, and can able to reason through theory to explain the
unexpected higher technically explain higher level problems problems.
molecular weight bands. unexpected higher such as explaining
(Broad Broad Goals 3,4; molecular weight higher molecular
Specific Goals 1, 2, 3, 4, 5) bands. weight bands.
Does the student The student can The student The student does not
understand how DNA identify the problem understands DNA understand theory of
migrates in an agarose gel? with the buffer and migration in light of DNA migration based
(Broad Broad Goal 3; can identify fragments size OR charge but not on size and charge.
Specific Goal 3, 4) that are larger than both.
Primer Design Exercise
Does the student The primers are The reaction might The reaction would
understand the keys to a designed to meet the work, but there are not work due to poor
quality primer? (Broad criteria and the PCR potential problems primer design.
Goal 2; Specific Goals 1, reaction should work with primer design or
6) in theory. structure.
Does the student The 3’ primer is the The primer is the The primer is neither
understand the proper reverse complement of reverse or the the complement nor
orientation/design of the the sequence and complement but not the reverse and
reverse primer? (Broad should work in the both and therefore the therefore the reaction
Goal 2, Specific Goal 1) reaction. reaction will not work. will not work.
Can the student use The student has The student can The student does not
bioinformatics tools developed primers identify a problem use bioinformatics to
including BLAST searches using bioinformatics with the primers using check the primers or
to check primer quality that meets the criteria bioinformatics but does not understand
and specificity? (Broad and the student clearly cannot analyze the how the results
Goals 2, 5; Specific Goal understands bioinformatics results elucidate specificity of
6) specificity of the correctly or the primers to the
primer. completely. target DNA.
Gel Analysis Exercise
Can the student properly The student eliminated The student eliminated The student did not
analyze the results of the all appropriate all appropriate analyze the results
gel to identify cross- suspects (and no suspects and properly and potential
reacting bands and make additional ones). additional ones such suspects were
appropriate conclusions? as suspect #6. released.
(Broad Goal 4; Specific
Goals 1, 2, 5)
Can the student identify The student knows the The student knows The student does not
and design the next importance of that suspect #6 should know to retest suspect
important experiment to retesting suspect #6 be retested but does #6.
test? (Broad Goals 2, 3; with the appropriate not include
Specific Goals 2, 5) controls. appropriate controls.
Does the student The student can The student can The student cannot
understand how DNA identify the correctly identify the sizes of identify either band
migrates in a gel and how sized fragment and the band, but the sizes OR can identify only
to use the ladder to determine the sizes of don’t influence their one band.
determine fragments sizes? all fragments. decision.
(Broad Goal 4; Specific
Goals 3, 4)
Does the student The student eliminated The student did not The students were not
understand the importance the appropriate eliminate the able to eliminate
of positive and negative suspects and stated appropriate suspects appropriate suspects
controls? (Broad Goals 2, how +/- controls OR did not state how and state how +/-
3; Specific Goal 5) influenced their +/- controls influenced controls influenced
decision including the their decision. their decision.