Literature Review


  • To provide feedback on the different criteria use the sliding bar to indicate where the student fits best. Note that the position of the scalebar does not reflect a linear scale from 0-10 points. 
  • The descriptions of performance levels are only indicative of what is expected and additional comments in the open remarks space 'Feedback/feedforward' may be necessary to fine-tune, add criteria, or specify feedback. The space 'Additional Criteria, Feedback, and Comments' at the bottom of the Rubric can also be used for this purpose. Please, do not exceed the visible text in these open text boxes so the text remains accessible after export to a PDF.
  • A written narrative accompanying the rubric should be filled in under 'Additional Criteria, Feedback, and Comments'. This field is obligatory. 
  •  If a criterium is not applicable, you can use the eye icon on the right to grey-out the criterium. 
  • To save this rubric use the 'Download rubric' button to turn it into a pdf document. Examiner must upload it at the right step in OSIRIS Case.
  • An instruction video on how you can make the best use of the rubrics can be found here
  • Name student
  • Research group
  • Select Master's programme
    • Biofabrication
    • Bioinformatics and Biocomplexity
    • Bio Inspired Innovation
    • Biology of Disease
    • Cancer, Stem Cells and Developmental Biology
    • Cardiovascular Health and Disease
    • Drug Innovation 
    • Environmental Biology
    • Epidemiology
    • Epidemiology Postgraduate
    • Health and Environment
    • Infection and Immunity
    • Medical Imaging
    • Molecular and Cellular Life Sciences
    • Neuroscience and Cognition
    • One Health
    • Regenerative Medicine and Technology
    • Science and Business Management
    • Toxicology and Environmental Health
  • Student number
  • Rubric filled in by
    • Examiner
    • Second reviewer
    • Supervisor host institute 
    • Daily supervisor
    • Student

Preconditions for literature review to be eligible for assessment

  • This assignment has a single author (the student) 
  • The assignment contains a plain language summary
  • The assignment is free of plagiarism and has been checked with Ouriginal
  • If Generative AI has been used this is done with proper citation and according to the School's guidelines
  • The rubrics are discussed between the examiner and daily supervisor (if not the same person)
  • The rubrics are (orally) discussed with the student to provide extra feedback
Sufficient - Good
Good - Excellent
Content: Insufficient
Content: Sufficient - Good
Content: Good - Excellent
Content: Feedback / feedforward

• Does not justify the content

• Represents the content

• Concise and attracts attention

Plain language summary

• Misrepresents the content

• Represents most highlights

• Represents main information and all highlights

• Unattractive, too technical or too simple

• Understandable for the interested non-expert

• Interesting to read and easy to understand


• Misrepresents the content

• Represents most highlights

• Represents main information and all highlights

• Lacks components

• Contains all components

• Concise and correct

• Is hard to understand

• Can be understood without additional information

Introduction, relevance research question

• Research question absent or lacking focus

• Research question well defined and focussed

• Substantiated research question with clear focus

• Relevance (scientific and/or societal) of research question unclear                                                 

• Relevance (scientific and/or societal) of research question clarified

• Research question has the potential to contribute useful new knowledge to the scientific field or society

Relevant literature/data analysis

• Incomplete or incorrect overview of data or retrieved literature

• Satisfactory overview of data or retrieved literature

• Complete overview of data or retrieved literature, key references included

• Analysis/interpretation of data or retrieved literature is not correct

• Analysis/interpretation of data or retrieved literature is correct   

• Analysis/interpretation of data or retrieved literature is convincing and creative

• Search strategy is badly motivated, inappropriate, confusing or unsystematic

• Search strategy is correct

• Search strategy clearly outlined and optimally suited to answer research question

Discussion and conclusion – presentation of new models or hypotheses, depth and critical analysis

• Does not get back to the research question

• Answers or discusses the research question

• Concisely answers and/or discusses the research question 

• Data inadequately discussed, sticking rigidly to existing concepts or using invalid arguments

• Relation between data and research question discussed using valid arguments

• Concise, sensible and in depth discussion of data in relation to research question

• Discussion fails to address strengths and weaknesses of study

• Strengths, limitations, and new insights are addressed in the light of the literature

• Complete, critical, and balanced discussion of strengths, limitations, and new insights

• Text cannot be understood without information provided by figures and tables

• Text can be understood without information provided by figures and tables 

•  Text can be easily understood without information provided by figures and tables

• Conclusion is weak or not supported by evidence

• Conclusion is in line with presented evidence

• Strongly supported conclusion following a critical discussion

• New models, hypotheses or suggestions for additional research are missing or illogical

• New models, hypotheses and/or possible future steps are presented

• New models, hypotheses and/or possible future steps are discussed in depth

• Societal impact is not part of the discussion

• Societal impact is part of the discussion

• Societal impact is explained in a convincing way

Tables and figures

• Absent/incorrect referral in written text

• Correctly referred to in written text

• Cannot be understood without the main text

• Can be understood without additional information

• Are irrelevant and/or do not support text

• Are relevant and support text

• Provide an excellent addition to the text

• Uses existing figures without correct citation

• Uses existing figures (or slight adaptations) with proper citation

• Designs own figure(s) combining key information from different sources

• Legends provide insufficient information

• Legends contain the necessary information

• Legends are complete and concise

Structure and Style
Structure and style: Insufficient
Structure and style: Sufficient - Good
Structure and style: Good - Excellent
Structure and style: Feedback/feedforward
Structure and line of reasoning

• The line of thought is unclear

• Line of thought mostly clear

• The line of thought is easy to follow and supported by the structure

• Text is badly structured

• Text is well structured

• Structure supports legibility of text

Writing skills

• Disturbing spelling or grammar mistakes

• No errors present detected by spellcheckers

• Grammar and style support legibility of the document

• Information frequently and disturbingly repeated

• Information sometimes unnecessarily repeated

• Information only repeated when necessary

• Style too wordy or too concise

• Grammar and style enable understanding of the information

• Writing flows smoothly

• Referral is inconsistent, incomplete, or incorrect; references cannot be retrieved*

• Referral is consistent, complete, and correct; references can be traced

Professional Attitude
Sufficient - Good
Good - Excellent
Professional attitude: Feedback/feedforward
Initiative, independence, handling feedback

• Relies on supervisor's instructions only to handle content; depth is lacking

• Takes initiative (initially) after stimulation; part of ideas/content conceived independently

• Takes initiative; content (including finding references) is provided independently

• Does not request feedback

• Requests general feedback

• Takes initiative to request feedback for specific sections

• Responds defensively or ignores feedback; minimal improvements after feedback

• Responds well to feedback leading to reasonable improvements

• Takes feedback seriously yielding excellent improvements

Critical attitude

• Critical attitude is absent, asks no questions

• Shows self-reflection and has critical attitude towards (published) research

• Critical attitude is based on intellectual depth and profundity

Integrity, conscientiousness

• Data manipulated or left out*

 • Data used in a reliable and trustworthy manner


• Does not meet deadlines

• Meets most deadlines

• Sets own deadlines and adheres to them

• Does not keep appointments

• Keeps appointments

• Schedules appointments when necessary

Additional Criteria, Feedback, and Comments**

* In case of fraud or plagiarism, the examiner will inform the Board of Examiners of this in writing
** Obligatory: please provide a written narrative to accompany the rubrics

  1. Name supervisor/examiner
  2. Current date