A softball rubric is a format used to evaluate skills that provides a clear picture of the capabilities of the players or team. It is based on 4 criteria that range from poor to excellent which the observer would rate based on the performance outcome of the player. It is still a relatively new tool in sport but has actually been used in academics since the 14th century and then adapted to its current format in the mid 1990’s.
Elements of a Softball Rubric
What are the key outcome elements of the skill and how does the player execute during game situations. This is not based on the mechanics of the skills but on the execution itself and results of the activity.
We want our players to be at least at a 3 out of 4 for all softball skills. By using this model, coaches can plan practice sessions to work on specific skills. For example, a player might be good at throwing but not at hitting so you might have a small practice session for hitting only. Another option is that stations can be set up during a practice and the players can work at the station where they need the most improvements.
The rating as mentioned is from 1 – 4 with each rating having points associated with them. The 1 – 4 rating system makes the evaluation precise so that an evaluator can not simply put a 3 and not have to commit either way to the rating. You might use the point system if you are going to use the softball rubric for tryouts or assessments during the season.
- 4 = Excellent
- 3 = Satisfactory
- 2 = Needs Improvement
- 1 = Very Poor
Following are some softball rubrics that I have built. This is based on my own experience and criteria which may be different from other coaches and evaluators. Feel free to make modifications based on how you would evaluate the skills.
Receiving A Softball Rubric:
A softball rubric can also be used as a teaching tool to plan the key performance factors that you want your players to aspire to. When using it as an assessment tool for improvement, be sure to use it as a tool and not a reason to bench a player or to put her into a category on the team. By working with the players and allowing them to understand this process, they can see on paper where their difficulties are visible. This is a good tool as some players have a hard time accepting some of their technical skill deficiencies.
Some will use this model for tryouts. The point system will help for an overall picture of the players abilities. It can also be used as a progression tool as players move through their softball careers from beginner to advanced competition depending on their goals.
The rubric can be applied to almost any aspect of softball including tactics, team cohesion and even tournament play. It can be designed based on what the team requirements are and the criteria at each level of performance. Evaluate the team through the year to see how they are progressing.