Rubric for Scoring Biography Essay

 

 

Unsatisfactory (0-11)

Fair (12-15)

Decent (16-18)

Excellent (19-20)

 

 

 

Revealing the subject

 

40%

 

 

Leaves the reader with only a vague sense of the subject, without much understanding of his or her uniqueness and/or his/her and influence on the author; fails to explore formative experiences or inner qualities;

neglects to explain the subject’s environment or does so inadequately;

minimal or awkward use of quotes;

reports facts but adds nothing narrative or descriptive; neglects to report essential facts; does not demonstrate impact on writer.

 

Gives the reader a clear picture of the person and his/her influence on the author;  shows uniqueness but does not offer  a deep understanding;

fails to explore thoroughly the inner qualities of a person or neglects to recount their formative experiences;

minimal or awkward use of quotes;

fails to describe the person’s environment and relationships with enough detail; reports essential facts in a perfunctory way; may not clearly show impact on writer.

 

Gives the reader a vivid picture  and deep understanding of the person and his/her influence on the author;

explores inner qualities and formative experiences;  quotes the person, and others speaking about the person; describes the person’s environment and relationships; weaves in essential facts (including dates and places) in a creative way; shows how person influenced writer.

 

Gives reader a dynamic impression and profound understanding of the person and his/her influence on the author; explores inner qualities and formative experiences;

aptly quotes the person, and others speaking about the person;

describes the person’s environment and relationships with rich and telling details;

weaves in essential facts (such as dates and places) in an artful way; artfully shows how person influenced writer.

 

 

Approach to biography as a literary form

 

20%

 

 

Does not craft the facts into a story;

uses a predictable chronological order; reports countless sundry facts without building any sort of focus or theme.

 

Recounts the life as a story, but does so in a predictable or awkward way;

relies to heavily on the chronological sequences, using repetitive or awkward transitions such as “and then…so then…later…and then…”;  sometimes allows unrelated facts to clutter paragraphs.

 

Resists all three demons of biography!

Finds a story within the facts subject’s life; develops a structure for the life story that is not strictly chronological; 

prudently  selects content and does not succumb to the temptation to report every single little fact known about the person.

 

Conquers all three demons of biography! Finds a compelling story within the facts subject’s life;

develops a creative and entertaining structure for the life story that is not strictly chronological; 

wisely selects content and does not succumb to the temptation to report every single little fact known about the person.

 

Vocabulary and mechanics

20%

 

Student misuses or misspells basic vocabulary. Essay is difficult to read due to the number of distracting errors.

 

Student uses simple words and takes few risks. The paper is legible but contains multiple errors. Vocabulary choices may be repetitive.  Errors in punctuation or grammar may cause confusion.

 

Student takes risks with vocabulary. Most words are sophisticated and used properly.  No more than three mechanical errors.

 

Precise and colorful words are selected deliberately. No more than one mechanical error in the entire paper. Varied sentence structure, smooth transitions.

 

Process, effort, presentation

 

20%

 

 

Student wasted  class time;

One or more stages skipped or hastily executed (preliminary exercises, rough draft, revision to final version); sloppy  presentation; one or two required materials missing.

 

Student wasted some portion of class time;

effort lacking in one of the three stages (preliminary exercises, rough draft, revision to final version);

minimal improvement from rough draft to final;  avoided conference with teacher; neat presentation all required materials submitted (photos, written exercises, rough draft, final).

 

Student uses class time wisely;

adequate effort shown in all three stages (preliminary exercises, rough draft, revision to final version);

noticeable improvement from rough draft to final; held conferences with teacher and peers in or out of class; all required materials submitted (photos, written exercises, rough draft, final).

 

Student uses class time wisely;

sustained intense effort throughout  all three stages of project (preliminary exercises, rough draft, revision to final version); marked

improvement from rough draft to final;  held conferences with teacher and peers in or out of class; all required materials submitted (photos, written exercises, rough draft, final).