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Mrs. Primack's English Class

Grading the Essay
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The Grading of Formal Essays:  A Scoring Guide

I will use the following criteria when evaluating your formal essays:

A --> 90 - 100 points:  With apt and specific references to the textual material, these well-written and well-organized essays clearly analyze and evaluate an assigned topic or present an original thesis. While not without flaws, these essays will demonstrate a mastery of the textual material as well as consistent control over the elements of effective composition.  These writers read with perception and express their ideas with skill, clarity, compelling textual support, and stylistic maturity.

B --> 80 - 89 points:  These papers also analyze the textual material, but they are less incisive, developed, or aptly supported than papers of the highest range.  They deal accurately with the assigned topic and material, but are less effective, less original, or less thorough than "A" papers. While these essays demonstrate the writer's ability to express ideas clearly, they do so with less maturity and precision than the best papers.

C --> 70 - 79 points:  Although these essays are good, they are superficial.  They respond to the assignment without important errors in composition, but they miss the complexities and idiosyncracies of style and perception.  Often the analysis is vague, mechanical, or overly generalized.  While the writing is adequate to convey the writer's thoughts, these essays are typically pedestrian, not as well conceived, organized, or developed as upper-level papers. Usually, they reveal simplistic thinking and/or immature writing.  Essays that are submitted without a sufficient rough draft are automatically dropped to a "C" prior to instructor evaluation, and are NOT eligible for a revision grade.

D --> 60 - 69 points:  These essays reflect an incomplete understanding of the topic, the assignment, and/or the textual material.  The analysis may be inaccurate or unclear, misguided or underdeveloped; these papers may paraphrase rather than analyze.  Generally, the writing demonstrates weak control of such elements as diction, organization, syntax, or grammar.  These essays typically lack persuasive evidence from the text.  They may contain recurrent stylistic flaws and/or outright misreadings.

F --> 0 --- 59 points:  These essays compound the problems of a "D" paper.  Frequently, they are unacceptably brief. Often poorly written on several counts, they may contain many distracting errors in grammar and mechanics. Although some attempts may have been made to respond to the topic, the writer's views typically are presented with little clarity, organization, coherence, or supporting evidence.  Essays that are especially inexact, vacuous, and/or mechanically unsound are given an "F."