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Kent State University Scoring Rubric

KSU Scoring Rubric


Dear Writer:


Your challenge essay will be read by two readers, according to the criteria below. If the readers disagree, a third reader will assess your essay. You will receive an email telling you your score, what class that puts you in, and what to do next.

Score Descriptions:


Score 6 ENG 21011

Amount and accuracy of information: The writer consistently provides ample, explicit, detailed, and factually accurate information substantiated by source readings.

Adequacy of issue summary: The writer demonstrates exceptional ability to pinpoint issues and positions accurately, as well as clearly and objectively synthesize those issues and positions into a coherent, focused summary.

Interpretation: The writer is able to interpret the complexities that lie beneath the surface of the issue. Moreover, the writer may show an awareness of the complexity of the emotional component of the issue.

Organization: The writer demonstrates strong control over the organization of the essay’s content. Paragraphs are developed in a logical, “reader friendly” progression. The organization demonstrates an integration of information rather than a narrative of events.

Clarity and style: The writer achieves clear communication through consistently precise diction; stylistically varied, effective sentence structures; and effective transitional words, phrases, and sentences.

Conventions: The writer exhibits sustained control over writing conventions.

Score 5 ENG 21011

Amount and accuracy of information: The writer usually provides ample, explicit, detailed, and factually accurate information substantiated by source readings. The 5 writer impressively synthesizes the information.

Adequacy of issue summary: The writer insightfully identifies major issues and positions. The 5 writer is always aware of the range of possible positions on the issue.

Interpretation: The writer provides specific connections between source material and the essay’s controlling idea, as well as demonstrating some awareness of emotions underpinning the issues and positions.

Organization: The writer demonstrates good control over the organization of the essay’s content. Paragraphs are developed in a logical progression. Again, integration is the key.

Clarity and style: The writer demonstrates good word choice, stylistically varied sentences, and clear transitional words, phrases, and sentences.

Conventions: Writer has obvious control over writing conventions.

Score 4 ENG 11011

Amount and accuracy of information: The writer provides sufficient, specific information effectively synthesized from the sources.

Adequacy of issue summary: The writer demonstrates an understanding of the basic positions and issues. The writer usually seems to grasp the range of possible issues.

Interpretation: The writer is able to go beyond presentation of facts to discuss the complexities of the issues.

Organization: The overall structure is coherent. The writer is using transitions more effectively than a 3 writer.

Clarity and style: The writing is basically easy to understand.  The word choice may be inexact but does not block comprehension. Writing will usually be wordy.

Conventions: Sporadic, minor errors.

Score 3 ENG 11011

Amount and accuracy of information: The writer provides specific information, with, perhaps, occasional broad generalizations and inaccuracies.  There is little evidence of synthesis of information.

Adequacy of issue summary: The writer identifies the basic positions and issues.  The 3 writer tends to see positions simplistically.

Interpretation: The writer rarely rises above the level of presentation of facts and issues.

Organization: Although the 3 essay is more coherently organized than a 2 essay, the paragraphing may be choppy and disjointed; the overall structure is generally simplistic.  The 2 writer uses transitions but not skillfully. The writer may rely on mechanical transitions (like “nevertheless”).

Clarity and style: The 3 writer is easier to understand than the 2 writer, but often miscommunicates because of poor word choice, weak logic and ineffective transitions.  Sentence structure is often pedestrian: misused passive voice; lack of effective parallelism;  lack of variety.

Conventions: Occasional errors, rarely serious enough to interfere with the reader’s comprehension.

Score 2 ENG 01001

Amount and accuracy of information: The writer may provide a significant amount of information but does not seem entirely in command of it. More of this information is detailed than with the 1 writer. The writer may misinterpret some of the information. A 2 writer may remain at a high level of generalization with some specific detail.

Adequacy of issue summary: The 2 writer has a superficial understanding of the issues involved. The presentation of these issues may be confused.

Interpretation: The writer may attempt to interpret the information. The writer, however, does not arrive at a sustained effort at interpretation.

Organization: The organization of a 2 paper is either simplistic or muddled. If the writer doesn’t present very much information, the organization will probably be simplistic. If the writer provides much information, the organization tends toward chaos. For instance, the writer may discuss four or five issues in one paragraph without signaling connections. The writer doesn’t convincingly follow a clear overall plan.

Clarity and style: This is where the 2 writer generally fails. It is difficult to understand the information because of weak logic, weak cohesion between sentences, and poor word choice. Stylistically, the sentences may be of uniform length and uncomplicated. We will not see control of sophisticated syntax.

Conventions: The writer has limited control of conventions. There are several errors; these errors may interfere with the reader’s comprehension.

Score 1 ENG 01001

Amount and accuracy of information: The writer provides very little specific information. Instead, the writer tends to summarize information with sweeping generalizations. This writer also might provide misinformation, suggesting inadequate reading or inability to synthesize sources.

Adequacy of issue summary: The writer may oversimplify issues and positions. The writer demonstrates very little if any understanding of the issue. The writer tends to see the issue in black and white terms.

Interpretation: The writer demonstrates an inability to go beyond stated assumptions and information in the articles in order to arrive at an interpretation of the emotions that lay beneath the issue. The writer stays only at the level of information.

Organization: Rudimentary organization. Organization may be apparent but seem disconnected from the content. There may be no apparent organization in a 1 paper.

Clarity and style: Levels of generalization may be consistently too high. Coherence tends to be weak. The choice of words, level of generalization, and lack of coherence make the essay difficult to understand. No real sense of style in sentence construction. Sentences may be unremittingly simple.

Conventions: Weak control of conventions. Frequent errors, some of which may be serious enough to interfere with the reader’s comprehension.