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"No Such Thing as a Bad Question" - Supplementary Material

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This page provides supplementary material for the chapter "No Such Thing as a Bad Question: Using Rubrics to Help Students Learn from and Strengthen Failed Research Questions," by Kathleen Baril, Justine Post, and Bethany Spieth. The chapter was published in Confronting Failure: Approaches to Building Confidence and Resilience in Undergraduate Researchers, edited by Lisa Corwin, Lou Charkourdian, and Jen Heemstra, and published in 2022 by the Council on Undergraduate Research.


The material consists of:

  • the full rubrics, with definitions and examples, for debatability, researchability, and feasibility, formatted so they can each be printed on a single page
  • model worksheets for peer review activities that can be conducted in class or used as homework

All material is licensed under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0.


Four worksheets for peer review activities are provided below. Three form a set with one worksheet per criterion (debatability, researchability, and feasibility). When introducing the rubrics to students, we highly recommend beginning with these more focused worksheets and working through the rubrics individually, spending time with each criterion on its own before bringing in the next one.

A combined and abbreviated worksheet is also provided that has students work through all three criteria in one activity. We recommend introducing this worksheet only after students have gained plenty of practice with each criterion/rubric on its own.

Individual Worksheets

Combination Worksheet