ESSAY GRADING CRITERIA
English 1301/1302—Spring 2011
THE OUTSTANDING ESSAY (A+/A/A-)
is original, persuasive, and insightful, with clearly defined terms and a
sense of its own significance; it presents a well-phrased and compelling argument
early on and develops it over the course of the paper.
for thesis is
thorough and convincing, chosen from respected and current sources, analyzed
insightfully, and cited correctly; counter-arguments are refuted and objections
, the paper flows and coheres yet paragraphs are
focused and ordered so as to develop the argument. Sentences are elegant, fresh,
and varied, drawing on a large and appropriate vocabulary, and entirely free of
clichéd or colloquial terms or
Easily identifiable, plausible, novel, sophisticated, insightful, crystal
clear, significant and/or insightful, clearly defined, original, persuasive with
clearly defined terms and sense of its own significant. Well-phrased and
compelling argument early on and develops over course of paper. Connects well
with paper title.
Evident, understandable, and appropriate for thesis.
Excellent transitions from point to point. Paragraphs support solid topic
sentences, are well-developed, unified and coherent. Transitions are sooth,
precise, logical, and appropriate. Organization well-chosen and consistently
Use of evidence:
Primary source information used to buttress every point with at
least one example. Examples support topic sentence and fit within paragraph.
Excellent integration of quoted material into sentences. Demonstrates an in depth
understanding of the ideas in the assigned reading and critically
evaluates/responds to those ideas in an analytical, persuasive manner. Integrated
into the essay effectively
Author clearly relates evidence to "mini-thesis" (topic sentence);
analysis is fresh and exciting, posing new ways to think of the material. Work
displays critical thinking and avoids simplistic description or summary of
Logic and argumentation:
All ideas in the paper flow logically; the argument is
identifiable, reasonable, and sound. Author anticipates and successfully defuses
counter-arguments; makes novel connections to outside material (from other parts
of the class, or other classes), which illuminate thesis. Creates appropriate college
level, academic tone.