Excellent (Exceeds Standards)
Acceptable (Meets Standards)
Unacceptable (Below Standard)
Compelling and interesting hook. Strong introduction of topic. Strong claims clearly connected to the thesis. Three (3) specific claims made. Specific thesis statement.
Interesting hook. Interesting introduction of topic. Moderate strength claims clearly connected to the thesis. Three (3) general claims made. General thesis statement.
General hook. Topic is hinted at, but not explicitly stated. Claims are hinted at, but not stated. There are 2 or fewer claims that supports the thesis. Claim(s) are weak. Claim(s) are somewhat connected to the thesis. Thesis statement is non-specific.
No hook. Topic is not introduced. No claims are made. Lacks thesis statement.
Focus and Sequencing
All material clearly related to main topic and claims. Strong organization and integration of material within subtopics. Strong transitions linking subtopics and main topic.
All material is related to main topic, claims, and logically organized within subtopics. Clear, varied transitions linking subtopics and main topic.
Most material is clearly related to main topic and claims. Material may not be organized within subtopics. Attempts to provide variety of transitions.
Little evidence material is logically organized into topic, claims, or related to topic. Many transitions are unclear or nonexistent.
Support and Development
Strong research based support for thesis. Thorough, balanced, and insightful development of original ideas.
Sources well selected to support thesis with some research in support of thesis. Consistent and balanced development of original ideas.
Sources generally acceptable, but not research (evidence) based. Minimal development of original ideas.
Few sources supporting thesis. Sources insignificant or missing. Little to no development of original ideas.
Strong review of claims. Strong integration with thesis statement. Insightful discussion of impact of the researched material on topic.
Claims restated. Thesis statement restated. Discusses impact of researched material on topic.
Claims mentioned, but not restated. Thesis statement mentioned, but not restated.. Minimal discussion of impact material has on topic.
Claims not mentioned. Thesis statement not mentioned. Does not discuss the impact of researched material on topic. Conclusion missing.
Grammar and Mechanics
The paper is completely free of grammatical, spelling or punctuation errors.
Grammatical errors or spelling and punctuation are rare and do not detract from the paper.
Very few grammatical, spelling, or punctuation errors interfere with reading the paper.
Grammatical errors or spelling and punctuation substantially detract from the paper.
Tone and Style
Scholarly style. Writing is flowing and easy to follow. MLA format fully integrated and is used throughout the paper. Compelling title that is related to the topic.
Scholarly style. Writing has minimal awkward or unclear passages. MLA format is used, but not throughout the paper. General title that is related to the topic.
Word choice occasionally informal in tone. Writing has a few awkward or unclear passages. MLA format is rarely used. No title. General, non-specific title (i.e. Persuasive Essay)
Word choice is informal in tone. Writing is choppy, with many awkward or unclear passages. MLA format is not used. Font is incorrect type or size. No title