Publication Date



Introduction: Instructors assign grades to communicate to students how well they are learning the course content. However, students and instructors are often displeased with the process and outcome of grading. Statement of the Problem: We contend that conventional grading inadvertently detracts from student learning and simultaneously replicates systems of oppression in academia. We discuss Labor Based Grading Contracts (LBGC) as an alternative to conventional grading. Literature Review: We review the conceptual and empirical literature on LBGCs as an alternative method of assessing student work and extend its application to psychology and neuroscience courses. Teaching Implications: We present recommendations for implementing LBGCs and address common concerns instructors have about this approach. We also make a call for more research on LBGCs in psychology and neuroscience teaching and learning. Conclusion: LBGCs represent a promising shift in the purpose and approach to assessing student work and learning by centering laboring to learn and developing skills. LBGCs also create a more equitable grading structure for all students.


Teaching of Psychology



Second Department


Open Access

Full text attached

Publisher Statement

Manuscript Accepted for Publication in Summer 2022. This record will be updated with information about the version of record upon publication in Teaching of Psychology.