Episode Explained: Episode Grading Rubric


Hey Episodians,

In this installment of Episode Explained we’re going to cover the Episode Grading Rubric. While we’re not able to provide specific numbers to individual authors we can at least provide information on how we grade stories and what factors we look at when evaluating a story.


The grading rubric is a standardized measure of quality for stories on the Episode platform.

Our Editorial team uses it when looking at Community Authored stories in the context of considering them for partnering, featuring on a shelf, or as a contest winner.

Here is the rubric our Review Team uses.

How are stories graded?

We ‘grade’ stories in 4 categories and use a 4-point scale very similar to calculating GPA. At the same time stories are checked for any potential issues with our content guidelines. We look at:

  1. Story: This refers to plot and pacing. Is this story entertaining? Well thought out?
  2. Choices: Does the story have any? Are they well written and meaningful?
  3. Visuals: Is the directing smooth and relatively error-free? Is it really creative or interesting?
  4. Dialogue: Does it have style? A strong or distinct voice? Grammatically correct and easy to read?

Stories are given a score of 1 - 4 for each category with higher scores being preferable. The 4 scores are averaged together for an overall score. At the time of this writing, most stories we review have average scores between 2.5 and 3.0. In order to be considered for a shelf (including contests) stories need at least a 3.0. To be considered for a partnership with Episode stories need at least a 3.5. Please also keep in mind that even if a story achieves these scores it does not mean it will be featured - only that it is potentially eligible.

As an author, how can I see my story’s rubric score?

At this time there is not a way for us to share this information with you as the grading process is entirely manual. Our Review Team is small and the process can take some time so we are not able to look at every story nor can we grade stories on request.

The best way to get an idea of what your story score might be is to take the rubric and go through your story yourself or have a friend do it and see what scores you get.

How do you determine which stories get graded?

As much as we wish we could, we are able to grade only a small number of the tens of thousands of the stories on the platform. There are a few ways stories get graded.

  • We have a tool searching for published stories with high Reader Retention (more on that in next month’s forum post). Stories identified by this tool get graded.
  • Stories in the top 100 on any trending section generally get graded and reviewed for content guideline purposes. If they score well they are passed on to the Editorial team.
  • Stories being considered for featuring on a shelf (either from community recommendations or contest entries) are graded.

We hope this was able to provide you a bit more context on the grading process for stories. We hope to also have more Episode Explained post available for you all soon.

The Episode Team


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