An essay that “Achieves Excellence” will be distinguished in the following criteria:
The writer explains the author’s ideas, position, and/or point of view using the concepts and methods addressed in Chapters 1-3 of They Say, I Say.
The writer identifies the reasons and/or evidence upon which the author is basing his or her position.
The writer identifies the conclusions drawn by the author.
The writer uses summary, paraphrase, and/or some quotation appropriately in his or her explanation of the text.
The writer responds to the text with his or her position using the concepts and methods addressed in Chapter 4 of They Say, I Say (“Yes/No/Okay, But”).
The writer distinguishes throughout his or her position from that of the author (Chapter 5).
The writer anticipates and responds to potential objections to his or her point of view using the concepts in Chapter 6.
The writer defends and supports his or her position with sound evidence and reasoning.
The writer draws well-supported conclusions about the position taken by the author.
The writer demonstrates reading comprehension, analysis, and critical thinking.
The writer meets the standards for effective communication (clarity, logic, precision, accuracy, significance, and fairness).
The writer adheres to MLA guidelines for formatting, in-text citations, and the Works Cited page.
The essay is 700-900 words and has an original title.
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