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Points Earned       Criteria                                                           Doing Well   Getting Better   Starting Out
                                                                                       Meets all    Meets most       Meets some
                                                                                       criteria     criteria         criteria
Introduction (10)   My essay has a clear introduction, provides a hook that
                    engages the reader’s attention, contains adequate background
                    information about the topic, establishes a purpose for the
                    essay topic, and connects with the audience to establish
                    common ground. I use transitional words/sentences to connect
                    my ideas.
Thesis (5)          My thesis clearly states my topic and stand on the issue. My
                    thesis is worded clearly and powerfully as the last sentence of
                    my introduction. I do not use passive voice in my thesis.
Body (30)           My paragraphs are organized with persuasively worded topic
                    sentences and clinchers. Each body paragraph acts as a
                    supporting reason. My transitions both within and between
                    subtopics fluidly move my reader from one idea to the next. I
                    provide lead-in sentences and attributive phrases to set up
                    quotes/paraphrases. My three supporting reasons in each
                    paragraph are developed from research balanced amongst all
                    my sources. My commentary follows each supporting detail
                    and answers “So what?”(relates to thesis). My commentary
                    does not simply repeat the research. I anticipate and answer all
                    reader questions. I do not repeat information or recycle
Concessions (10)     I anticipate strong arguments against my position. I quote or
                    paraphrase when describing opposing arguments. I use
                    research to make logical concessions and counter argue
Conclusion (10)     My conclusion effectively relates back to the introduction and
                    hook. I restate my thesis and reinforce it by summarizing each
                    of the reasons I provided in the body paragraphs in the order I
                    argued each subtopic. I use transitions to move fluidly from
                    one subtopic to the next. My final clincher is powerful.
MLA Style (10)      I cite from each of my 6 required sources listed on my Works
                    Cited. I use correct parenthetical citations and they match a
                    Works Cited entry. I introduce my sources with correct
                    attributive phrases. My Works Cited is in proper form and each
                    entry is correctly cited.
Balanced            I balance correct, thorough paraphrases of research with the
Research and        fluid integration of quotations. Without punctuation, my
Quotation           readers cannot tell where my words stop and my research
Integration (15)    begins. I also take information equally from many sources. One
                    paragraph/subtopic is not driven by research from only a few
Conventions and     I use appropriate spelling, capitalization, punctuation, and
Proofreading (10)   grammar. I use 3rd person pronouns in my writing. I take time
                    revising and proofreading my paper for typing errors.
Sentence Fluency    My writing is free of fragments and run-on sentences. I avoid
(10)                awkward and informally worded phrases and sentences by
                    writing simply and clearly. I vary my sentence beginnings and
                    sentence structures throughout the essay.
 Word Choice        My verbs are mostly written in active voice. My word choice
(10)                enhances the writing and lively action verbs add energy. I use
                    powerful, mature words that fit the message I am trying to
Persuasion and      The overall message that my paper provides is persuasive. I
Voice (15)          consistently convince the reader to support or oppose my
                    topic. My subtopics are organized in a persuasive fashion (most
                    convincing argument last). My own thoughts and explanations
                    outweigh the amount of research in my paper. My voice
                    provides insight and persuasive appeal (I do not simply string
                    my note cards together through transitional sentences)

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