Ranking is an evaluation process that entails placing things in an order that is based on their relative performance on a common indicator, for example a test. True ranking does not permit ties, although partial ranking does. Along with grading, ranking is a fundamental strategy for doing evaluation. This strategy is more likely to be used in evaluations where scarce resources are being apportioned, such as for the awarding of scholarships or admission to college. Unlike grades, which are criterion referenced, a rank in and of itself tells one nothing about the absolute performance of the evaluand. For example, all ranked evaluands may be bad, but still some will be ranked as first, second, and so on. The obverse is also the case. In other ...

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