VALUE Rubrics

Association of American Colleges and Universities

The VALUE Rubrics use students’ completed course assignments to determine readiness in relation to essential learning outcomes that all college graduates should achieve.

What This Includes

Skills addressed: Inquiry and Analysis, Critical Thinking, Creative Thinking, Written Communication, Oral Communication, Reading, Quantitative Literacy, Information Literacy, Teamwork, Problem Solving, Personal and Social Responsibility, Intercultural Knowledge and Competence, Ethical Reasoning, Foundations and Skills for Lifelong Learning, Global Learning, Integrative Learning


  • Sixteen VALUE rubrics
  • Each rubric has a learning outcome, definitions, glossary and performance levels


  • Background, research, and support materials for institutions and instructors using the rubrics

Key Takeaways

  • The VALUE rubrics identify and measure sixteen outcomes individuals will need to be successful in work, citizenship, and life, as determined by faculty and employers.
  • Faculty and programs using the rubrics look at students’ completed assignments to determine the level to which the student has achieved the learning outcome.
  • The universally adaptable nature of the rubrics ideally makes the language recognizable and transferrable with institutions across the country.
  • Rubrics are designed for college and university programs (and the benchmarks reflect this level of complexity). They would need to be adapted for specific workforce training or adult basic education classes

The Association of American Colleges and Universities (AAC&U) developed the VALUE assessment approach for campuses (Valid Assessment of Learning in Undergraduate Education). In 2007, this initiative at AAC&U brought together faculty and educational professionals to develop the 16 VALUE Rubrics. The learning outcomes forming the basis for the rubrics are consistent with the LEAP (Liberal Education and America’s Promise) initiative and are also aligned with the Degree Qualifications Profile. Drafts of each rubric were then tested by faculty with their own students’ work on more than 100 college campuses. The rubrics came into circulation in 2009 and have been accessed by 70,000+ individuals from more than 5,000 educational institutions since 2015. Use of the rubrics will involve some training and a calibration process so that all student work is assessed in a more standardized manner and so that the language of the rubrics is consistent with the university system and language.


Critical & Creative Thinking

Emotional Intelligence

Navigating & Using Information

Respecting Differences

Teamwork & Collaboration

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