A 4 paper is satisfactory, sometimes marginally so. It presents an adequate analysis of or response to the text, elaborating that response with sufficient examples and acceptable reasoning. Just as these examples and this reasoning, will ordinarily be less developed than those in 5 papers, so will the 4 paper's style be less effective. Nevertheless, a 4 paper shows that its writer can usually choose words of sufficient precision, control sentences of reasonable variety, and observe the conventions of written English.
A 3 paper is unsatisfactory in one or more of the following ways. It may analyze or respond to the text illogically; it may lack coherent structure or elaboration with examples; it may reflect an incomplete understanding of the text or the topic. Its prose is usually characterized by at least one of the following: frequently imprecise word choice; little sentence variety; occasional major errors in grammar and usage, or frequent minor errors.
A 2 paper shows serious weaknesses, ordinarily of several kinds. It frequently presents a simplistic, inappropriate, or incoherent analysis of or response to the text, one that may suggest some significant misunderstanding of the text or the topic. Its prose is usually characterized by at least one of the following: simplistic or inaccurate word choice; monotonous or fragmented sentence structure; many repeated errors in grammar and usage.
A 1 paper suggests severe difficulties in reading and writing conventional English. It may disregard the topic's demands, or it may lack any appropriate pattern of structure or development. It may be inappropriately brief. It often has a pervasive pattern of errors in word choice, sentence structure, grammar, and usage.
In addition to meeting the requirements for a “3,” the writing is essentially error-free in terms of mechanics. Models the style and format appropriate to the assignment.
In addition to meeting the requirements for a “3,” writing flows smoothly from one idea to another. The writer has taken pains to assist the reader in following the logic of the ideas expressed.
In addition to meeting the requirements for a “3,” the writer’s decisions about focus, organization, style/tone, and content made reading a pleasurable experience. Writing could be used as a model of how to fulfill the assignment.
3 - Competent
While there may be minor errors, the paper follows normal conventions of spelling and grammar throughout and has been carefully proofread. Appropriate conventions for style and format are used consistently throughout the writing sample. Demonstrates thoroughness and competence in documenting sources; the reader would have little difficulty referring back to cited sources.
Sentences are structured and word are chosen to communicate ideas clearly. Sequencing of ideas within paragraphs and transitions between paragraphs make the writer’s points easy to follow.
The writer has made good decisions about focus, organization, style/tone, and content to communicate clearly and effectively. The purpose and focus of the writing are clear to the reader and the organization and content achieve the purpose well. Writing follows all requirements for the assignment.
Frequent errors in spelling, grammar (such as subject/verb agreements and tense), sentence structure and/or other writing conventions distract the reader. Writing does not consistently follow appropriate style and/or format. Source documentation is incomplete. It may be unclear which references are direct quotes and which are paraphrased.
Sentence structure and/or word choice sometimes interfere with clarity. Needs to improve sequencing of ideas within paragraphs and transitions between paragraphs to make the writing easy to follow.
The writer’s decisions about focus, organization, style/tone, and/or content sometimes interfere with clear, effective communication. The purpose of the writing is not fully achieved. All requirements of the assignment may not be fulfilled.
Writing contains numerous errors in spelling, grammar, and/or sentence structure which interfere with comprehension. Style and/or format are inappropriate for the assignment. Fails to demonstrate thoroughness and competence in documentation.
Sentence structure, word choice, lack of transitions and/or sequencing of ideas make reading and understanding difficult.
The writer’s decisions about focus, organization, style/tone, and/or content interfere with communication. The purpose of the writing is not achieved. Requirements of the assignment have not been fulfilled.
June 6, 2002
http://www.csufresno.edu/cetl/assessment/ (click on WritingScoring.doc)