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Where to find the Essay Rubric

The essay rubric is an important tool in evaluating students’ essays against specific criteria. It helps assess students’ writing skills in a fair and universal manner and also enables peer and self assessment. The rubric is a significant method of judging your own failure and achievement and those of others vis-à-vis the requirements put down in the rubric.

Harvard Graduate School of Education’s Project Zero’s “Rubrics and Self Assessment Project” site provides a rubric for the persuasive essay by Heidi Goodrich Andrade. The rubric is graded 1 to 4 against eight different criteria for assessment. The criteria are: the claim, reasons in support of the claim, reasons against the claim, organization, voice, tone, word choice, sentence fluency, and conventions (http://www.pz.harvard.edu/Research/RubricsSelfPE.htm). This rubric gives a clear idea of what is expected of the student for the persuasive essay. The importance of each criterion can be judged according to its place in the list.

Though you may find making a rubric a time consuming and tedious exercise, it would save you plenty of time while assessing essays. The job would then seem easier and quicker with the help of this tool. To know how the rubric helps in assessment, refer to Melissa Kelly’s write-up about how the rubric makes her work easier and quicker (Kelly, Melissa. Make Your Life Easier with Rubrics. www.About.com). The links for “examples of rubrics” give you clear suggestions on how to use the rubric for various types of essays and also for various parts of it.

As you go through these sample rubrics, you will realize that the opening sentences, structure, and the thesis of an essay are of crucial importance. As a student, getting such a rubric will make the work of writing easier. You are on familiar ground now. You know what is expected of you and what you need to do to get those elusive grades for your essay paper.

Catholic Forum.com has elaborate rubrics for the persuasive and analytical essays while a site like ePrep has the SAT rubric sample. According to the SAT rubric, you will be graded on a scale of 1 to 6 based on the criteria listed in the rubric. These include development of position, organization, and use of language, sentence structure, and grammar and word usage.

School essays are graded according to the grade level. A site like Study Guide.org provides an example of a rubric for this level. The scores are given in grades rather than in points and assessment for school essays usually include format, understanding of text, development of the idea, text support, organization, word choice, sentence structure, transitions, and language and mechanics.

Using the essay rubric is expedient for both the teacher and student. Various sites on the Internet have rubric samples that you could refer to before you create your own. The rubric not only makes assessment easier and quicker, but also keeps the student on track vis-à-vis assignment requirements and teacher’s expectations.

Works Cited

http://blog.eprep.com/2006/12/04/sat-essay-rubric/

http://712educators.about.com/cs/rubrics/a/rubrics.htm

http://www.catholic-forum.com/churches/cathteach/outcomes_persuasive_essay_rubric.html

http://www.pz.harvard.edu/Research/RubricsSelfPE.htm

http://www.studyguide.org/essay_rubric.htm

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