Grading Criteria for COM-101 and COM-102
Any piece of writing reflects the choices made by the writer—choices in response to his or her understanding of the purpose of writing, its intended audience, and the form (or genre) the writer takes. These criteria attempt to evaluate the writer’s choices.
The A Paper
The assignment’s requirements are met. The writer is in command of the essay’s ideas; details to illuminate or support those ideas are specific, relevant and carefully crafted or presented. The work is tightly unified, and ideas are arranged logically with creative transitions. The introduction is original; it provides necessary context and engages the reader; the conclusion provides new insight and leaves a strong final impression. The writer’s sense of style is reflected in a variety of sentence constructions and sophisticated word choices; there are virtually no mechanical errors. Finally, if needed, MLA documentation rules have been applied precisely. The piece thoroughly satisfies, compelling the reader to think, reflect, or act.
The B Paper
The assignment’s requirements are met. The writer is in consistent control of the ideas of the essay; details to illuminate or support those ideas are specific and relevant. The organization and use of transitions are consistent. The introduction provides a context for the writing, but may miss the opportunity to fully engage the reader; the conclusion doesn’t repeat but rather pulls the essay’s ideas together. The essay demonstrates awareness of stylistic choices, in spite of a few mechanical errors (none of which are distracting to the reader or impede comprehension). Finally, if needed, MLA documentation rules have been applied with few formatting errors. The piece adequately satisfies, offering the reader some opportunity for thought and reflection.
The C Paper
The assignment’s requirements are met. The writer seems initially in control of the ideas of the essay, but is unable to maintain it; details to illuminate or support the essay’s ideas are typically relevant and/or specific. Organization is inconsistent, with few effective links between ideas. The introduction does not engage and provides little context for the reader; the conclusion repeats what’s already been said. The sentences demonstrate little awareness of stylistic options; mechanical errors are somewhat distracting, but generally do not distort the meanings of sentences. Finally, if needed, MLA documentation rules have been applied; formatting errors don’t mislead or confuse the reader. The piece prompts no further thought or reflection, leaving the reader indifferent.
The D Paper
The assignment’s requirements are not met. The writer maintains a false sense of control over the essay’s ideas (by mistaking a statement of purpose for a main idea, for example); details meant to illuminate or support the essay’s ideas are often generic and/or irrelevant. The organization is confusing, with little or no attempt at linking ideas. The introduction is unoriginal and fails to provide enough context for the reader; there is very little attempt at closing the essay. Sentences tend to be monotonous, with multiple mechanical errors that distract the reader from or even distort the ideas of the essay. Finally, MLA documentation rules have been attempted, but formatting misleads or confuses the reader. The piece is dissatisfying; it frustrates the reader’s attempts to further engage with the essay.
The F Paper
The assignment’s requirements are not met. The writer has no control over the essay’s ideas; details are severely lacking or missing altogether. The organization is incoherent or illogical, with no transitions between ideas, creating a total lack of unity. There has been no attempt to introduce or close the essay. Mechanical errors are distracting to the reader, distort meaning, and ultimately negate the writer’s credibility. MLA documentation rules, when needed, have not been attempted. The reader feels that his or her time has been wasted.