This criterion is linked to a Learning OutcomeFocus: how well does the essay maintain focus on a single TSIS?Beginning (1 point): Essay has no TSIS and shows minimal focus on a topic. Developing (2 points): Essay has focus, but no TSIS, or a TSIS, but doesn’t stay focused on it. Successful (3 points): Essay shows controlling (if uneven) focus on a TSIS and has a unified purpose. Exemplary (4 points): Essay is consistently purposeful and well-focused on a TSIS.
This criterion is linked to a Learning OutcomeComplexity of ideas: to what extent does the essay analytically explore the topic?Beginning (1 pt): Esay takes on a very simple topic or oversimplifies the complexities of the topic. Developing (2 pts): Essay tackles a complex problem or question, but may not adequately address it. Successful (3 pts): Essay sufficiently addresses a complex problem but may not fully explore the complexities/connections. Exemplary (4 pts): Essay thoughtfully addresses the complexities of a question/problem that has no easy solution, or teases out the nuances of connections that are not easily pinned down.
This criterion is linked to a Learning OutcomeSupport: how well does the essay use evidence, both as support and as “points of departure”? Are quotes/evidence incorporated effectively and analyzed thoroughly?Beginning (1 pt): Essay uses minimal or inappropriate evidence not clearly relevant to the controlling idea/claim. Writer does not tag/comment on/analyze the evidence. Developing (2 pts): Essay uses limited support that may not be well incorporated in support of the controlling idea/claim. Writer tags/comments/ analyzes the evidence only minimally. Successful (3pts): Essay’s support is mostly relevant and sufficiently well-analyzed; writer thoroughly introduces/ discusses each piece of evidence, although it may not always be clear who is speaking. Exemplary (4 pts): Support is consistently relevant, skillfully synthesized and thoroughly analyzed to advance the essay’s purposes. It is always clear whether a source or the writer is speaking.
This criterion is linked to a Learning OutcomeOrganization: to what extent is there a logical order of paragraphs/ points? Just one idea per par? Does the essay use transitions effectively?Beginning (1 point): Essay shows minimal control of arrangement of content. At sent level, there are frequent jumps in topic without bridging devices. Developing (2 pts): Essay exhibits some basic structure, but has confusing/inconsistent arrangement of content. Uses transitions inconsistently/ineffectively Successful: Essay has a functional (maybe simplistic) arrangement of content that creates a logical order; transitions are mostly effective Exemplary: Essay demonstrates sophisticated, thoughtful arrangement of content with focused paragraphs and fluid transitions.