Writing Rubric for College Level Writing

This assignment consists of a 3-4 double-spaced page essay written in response to one article assigned prior to this point in the semester. Select one article from the course readings to respond to. Of the materials we have engaged with so far, which one really stood out to you and why?

While many of the readings assigned in this course will evoke very personal and emotional reactions, the intention of this assignment is to reach beyond that initial “knee-jerk” response to the texts. Your essay should engage in careful and meaningful evaluation of the thesis contained within the article that it evaluates. While it is of course never necessary to agree with any of the arguments set forth by these articles, any points of contention should be carefully and academically substantiated, as should any points of agreement. 

This response is intended to serve as evaluation, not summary, and simple “book report” style essays will not fulfill the requirements of the assignment. As academic essays, responses must be developed around a thesis. Your response must include at least three citations from the original article, demonstrating that the thesis is sufficiently related to material present in the reading. Find passages/quotes that are reasonably short and that standout as significant to you. Try to limit quotes to no more than a few lines. Citations should not exceed 10% of the overall essay text, with the remaining 90% of the text comprised of your original analysis. Frame all quotes. Introduce the quote, provide the quote, and then follow up the quote with its significance: what is the quote evidence of in your answer, or how does the passage help you answer the question.

I encourage you to use the style of citation that is standard for your field of major, be it MLA, Chicago, or APA. (I will not accept Turabian.) If you have no declared major, please use MLA citation. Regardless of the style you choose, citations must be properly executed and consistent. Improper citation will result in a reduction of the final assignment grade. Please note, in the header to your essay, the citation style that you are using.

I will be looking for (1) depth and quality of reflection on course content; (2) incorporation of course discussions and readings; and (3) strength of writing (grammar and style). Late papers will be accepted, but 10% of the possible grade will be deducted per day the paper is submitted after its deadline. All essays are to be submitted as a Word document or in PDF format through the associated eLearning dropbox. Essays will be graded and returned electronically.

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