||I make a claim and explain why it is controversial.
||I make a claim but don't explain why it's controversial.
||My claim is buried, confused, and/or unclear.
||I don't say what my argument or claim is.
|Reasons in support of the claim
||I give clear and accurate reasons in support of my claim.
||I give reasons in support of my claim, but I overlook important reasons.
||I give 1 or 2 weak reasons that don't support my claim and/or irrelevant or confusing reasons.
||I don't give reasons in support of my claim.
|Reasons against the claim
||I discuss the reasons against my claim and explain why it is valid anyway.
||I discuss the reasons against my claim but neglect some or don't explain why the claim still stands.
||I say that there are reasons against the claim, but I don't discuss them.
||I don't acknowledge or discuss the reasons against the claim.
||My writing has a compelling opening, an informative middle, and a satisfying conclusion.
||My writing has a beginning, a middle, and an end.
||My organization is rough but workable. I may sometimes get off topic.
||My writing is aimless and disorganized.
|Voice and tone
||It sounds like I care about my argument. I tell how I think and feel about it.
||My tone is okay, but my paper could have been written by anyone. I need to tell how I think and feel.
||My writing is bland or pretentious. There is either no hint of a real person in it, or it sounds like I'm faking it.
||My writing is too formal or informal. It sounds like I don't like the topic of the essay.
||The words that I use are striking but natural, varied, and vivid.
||I make some fine and some routine word choices.
||The words that I use are often dull or uninspired or sound like I'm trying too hard to impress.
||I use the same words over and over. Some words may be confusing.
||My sentences are clear, complete, and of varying lengths.
||I have well-constructed sentences. My essay marches along but doesn't dance.
||My sentences are often awkward, run-ons, or fragments.
||Many run-on sentences and sentence fragments make my essay hard to read.
||I use correct grammar, punctuation, and spelling.
||I have a few errors to fix, but I generally use correct conventions.
||I have enough errors in my essay to distract a reader.
||Numerous errors make my paper hard to read.