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Deepening Lens Essay Rubric

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Deepening Lens Essay Rubric

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Representation Problems/Questions Arguments/Ideas Analysis & Reflection Organization Grammar & Mechanics

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A Gives strong, succinct overviews of all textual evidence, with particular aspects of focus; incorporates summary, paraphrase, and citation. Representation acknowledges the unfamiliar reader, provides necessary context, and anticipates any confusions a reader might have; presents a fair and accurate reading of text. For the primary text: identifies and articulates a question, puzzle or dilemma that instigates the primary essay and serves as a foundation for the argument the student will borrow and seek to deepen. For the student writer: identifies and articulates a question, puzzle, or dilemma that emerges from the student writer’s close reading and consideration of the text. PT: an articulated argument based on the student writer’s close reading of the text; consideration of the text’s problem/question. For the lens text: an identified and articulated argument from the lens text, one that has a vivid, productive conceptual relationship to the PT. SW: the student writer, typically at the end of the essay, offers and articulates a clear, interesting deepened sense of the PT’s idea (its problem and subsequent argument about that problem). There is clear, substantial analysis (the breaking down and parsing of evidence; consideration of different types of evidence in order to identify and represent larger patterns or meanings; goes beyond superficial reading or description to arrive at or infer the significance, meaning, and implications) and reflection (SW looks back over the ideas that have developed to offer new insight and implications). There is a discernible and strong beginning, middle, and ending. Each paragraph supports the articulated problems, evolving arguments and developing ideas. There is logical movement from one paragraph to the next. There are productive, logical transitions between paragraphs. The essay follows and makes use of the conventions of grammar and academic essay writing. There are few to no mistakes in spelling or punctuation and textual evidence is cited correctly, both on the paragraph and sentence level, as well as on the Work Cited page.

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The essay has a strong, interesting title that makes sense in the context of the essay.

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B Provides an overview of all textual evidence, but may lean too heavily on summary or paraphrase. Considers an unfamiliar reader but has some contextual gaps. Generally presents a fair and accurate reading of the text, but may have moments of misreading. PT: articulates a question, puzzle or dilemma from the text, though it may not fully connect to the argument the student will borrow and seek to deepen. SW: articulates a question, puzzle, or dilemma that emerges from close reading of the text but does not quite connect to/extend the primary text’s argument; may simply repeat the PT’s problem. PT: an argument is articulated based on the student writer’s close reading of the text and consideration of the text’s problem/question, though it may not be particularly challenging or productive. LT: an argument is identified and articulated, though it may not have an especially clear or productive relationship to the PT; may align too closely to the argument of the PT. SW: the student writer offers an idea, though it may too closely resemble the PT’s initial argument. Analysis and reflection present, though there are gaps in the essay where the student writer leans too heavily on summary; does not advance arguments or develop ideas as fully as possible. There is a beginning, middle, and ending. Each paragraph relates to and supports the essay’s evolving arguments and developing ideas, but not every paragraph moves them forward. The paragraphs may repeat the same evidence and ideas. There may be some clunky transitions between paragraphs. There are occasional errors, but overall the conventions of grammar and academic essay writing are followed. Textual evidence is cited properly. There is a correctly formatted Work Cited page. The essay has a strong title.

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C Assumes knowledge of the textual evidence by the reader and does not offer adequate representation or fair reading of the text. Makes little use of textual evidence, mostly summary or paraphrase. PT: struggles to identify and articulate a question, puzzle or dilemma from the text. SW: struggles to ask a productive question of the primary text; may simply repeat the question of the PT. PT: struggles to identify and articulate a compelling argument from the PT; the argument may not logically connect to the previously articulated problem or question. LT: struggles to identify and articulate an argument; may not have a conceptual relationship to the PT; may be too similar to the PT’s argument. SW: struggles to articulate a deepened sense of the PT’s argument (perhaps because the PT’s argument was never properly identified or articulated). Minimal analysis and reflection present, relies heavily on summary of the texts; does not advance arguments or develop ideas. The beginning, middle, and ending are not quite discernible (perhaps one or more is missing). The paragraphs do not seem to connect to one another or consistently support the essay’s arguments and ideas. The content of the paragraphs is redundant. There are a few, if any, transitions. There are several spelling, grammatical, and punctuation mistakes throughout the essay. The conventions of academic essay are not closely followed. Citation errors. Work Cited page is incomplete or improperly formatted. The essay has a title, but the title may not be especially interesting.

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D Assumes knowledge of textual evidence by the reader, offers little to no context, and makes only passing reference to the primary and lens texts. Does not pose any thoughtful questions, puzzles, of dilemmas from any text. There are no discernible or clearly articulated arguments or ideas in this essay. The essay simply summarizes and repeats content from the texts. Little to no analysis or reflection present. There is no discernible order to the paragraphs, no clear beginning, middle or ending, and little to no transition work. This paper is incoherent due to the amount of errors and lack of academic essay convention. Work Cited page is incomplete, improperly formatted, or missing. There is no title.

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