The essay will be scored by experienced and trained high school and college teachers. Each essay will be scored by two people who won't know each other's score. They won't know the student's identity or school either. Each reader will give the essay a score from 1 to 6 (6 is the highest score) based on the following scoring guide.

SCORE OF 6
An essay in this category is outstanding, demonstrating clear and consistent mastery, although it may have a few minor errors. A typical essay

  • effectively and insightfully develops a point of view on the issue and demonstrates outstanding critical thinking, using clearly appropriate examples, reasons, and other evidence to support its position
  • is well organized and clearly focused, demonstrating clear coherence and smooth progression of ideas
  • exhibits skillful use of language, using a varied, accurate, and apt vocabulary
  • demonstrates meaningful variety in sentence structure
  • is free of most errors in grammar, usage, and mechanics

SCORE OF 5
An essay in this category is effective, demonstrating reasonably consistent mastery, although it will have occasional errors or lapses in quality. A typical essay

  • effectively develops a point of view on the issue and demonstrates strong critical thinking, generally using appropriate examples, reasons, and other evidence to support its position
  • is well organized and focused, demonstrating coherence and progression of ideas
  • exhibits facility in the use of language, using appropriate vocabulary
  • demonstrates variety in sentence structure
  • is generally free of most errors in grammar, usage, and mechanics

SCORE OF 4
An essay in this category is competent, demonstrating adequate mastery, although it will have lapses in quality. A typical essay

  • develops a point of view on the issue and demonstrates competent critical thinking, using adequate examples, reasons, and other evidence to support its position
  • is generally organized and focused, demonstrating some coherence and progression of ideas
  • exhibits adequate but inconsistent facility in the use of language, using generally appropriate vocabulary
  • demonstrates some variety in sentence structure
  • has some errors in grammar, usage, and mechanics

SCORE OF 3
An essay in this category is inadequate, but demonstrates developing mastery, and is marked by one or more of the following weaknesses:

  • develops a point of view on the issue, demonstrating some critical thinking, but may do so inconsistently or use inadequate examples, reasons, or other evidence to support its position
  • is limited in its organization or focus, or may demonstrate some lapses in coherence or progression of ideas
  • displays developing facility in the use of language, but sometimes uses weak vocabulary or inappropriate word choice
  • lacks variety or demonstrates problems in sentence structure
  • contains an accumulation of errors in grammar, usage, and mechanics

SCORE OF 2
An essay in this category is seriously limited, demonstrating little mastery, and is flawed by one or more of the following weaknesses:

  • develops a point of view on the issue that is vague or seriously limited, and demonstrates weak critical thinking, providing inappropriate or insufficient examples, reasons, or other evidence to support its position
  • is poorly organized and/or focused, or demonstrates serious problems with coherence or progression of ideas
  • displays very little facility in the use of language, using very limited vocabulary or incorrect word choice
  • demonstrates frequent problems in sentence structure
  • contains errors in grammar, usage, and mechanics so serious that meaning is somewhat obscured

SCORE OF 1
An essay in this category is fundamentally lacking, demonstrating very littleorno mastery, and is severely flawed by one or more of the following weaknesses:

  • develops no viable point of view on the issue, or provides little or no evidence to support its position
  • is disorganized or unfocused, resulting in a disjointed or incoherent essay
  • displays fundamental errors in vocabulary
  • demonstrates severe flaws in sentence structure
  • contains pervasive errors in grammar, usage, or mechanics that persistently interfere with meaning

SCORE OF 0
Essays not written on the essay assignment will receive a score of zero.

Source: The College Board

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