The essay will be scored by experienced and trained high school and college teachers. Each essay will be scored by two people who won't know each other's score. They won't know the student's identity or school either. Each reader will give the essay a score from 1 to 6 (6 is the highest score) based on the following scoring guide.
Please note that the essay images seen by readers for scoring purposes are clearer than the images we can display for students and institutions on our website.
effectively and insightfully develops a point of view on the issue and demonstrates outstanding critical thinking, using clearly appropriate examples, reasons, and other evidence to support its position
lacks variety or demonstrates problems in sentence structure
contains an accumulation of errors in grammar, usage, and mechanics
SCORE OF 2
An essay in this category demonstrates little mastery, and is flawed by ONE OR MORE of the following weaknesses:
develops a point of view on the issue that is vague or seriously limited, and demonstrates weak critical thinking, providing inappropriate or insufficient examples, reasons, or other evidence to support its position
is poorly organized and/or focused, or demonstrates serious problems with coherence or progression of ideas
displays very little facility in the use of language, using very limited vocabulary or incorrect word choice
demonstrates frequent problems in sentence structure
contains errors in grammar, usage, and mechanics so serious that meaning is somewhat obscured
SCORE OF 1
An essay in this category demonstrates very little or no mastery, and is severely flawed by ONE OR MORE of the following weaknesses:
develops no viable point of view on the issue, or provides little or no evidence to support its position
is disorganized or unfocused, resulting in a disjointed or incoherent essay
displays fundamental errors in vocabulary
demonstrates severe flaws in sentence structure
contains pervasive errors in grammar, usage, or mechanics that persistently interfere with meaning
Essays not written on the essay assignment will receive a score of zero.
Retrieved September 25, 2009 from the College Board, http://www.collegeboard.com/student/testing/sat/about/sat/essay_scoring.html
Subject A Scoring Guide (University of California)
In holistic reading, raters assign each essay to a scoring category according to its dominant characteristics. The categories below describe the characteristics typical of papers at six different levels of competence. All the descriptions take into account that the papers they categorize represent two hours of reading and writing, not a more extended period of drafting and revision.
A 6 paper commands attention because of its insightful development and mature style. It presents a cogent analysis of or response to the text, elaborating that response with well-chosen examples and persuasive reasoning. The 6 paper shows that its writer can usually choose words aptly, use sophisticated sentences effectively, and observe the conventions of written English.