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Writing traits

Writing traits rubric



IDEAS AND CONTENT The reader has a hard time figuring out what the writer means.  Or else, the writer does not yet have much to say about this topic.   Although writing is less clear, the reader can see what the writer is trying to say.  Details may be less appropriate, specific, or insightful.   Writing is clear and specific.  Depending on the type of writing, both specific and interesting details are provided, or appropriate and insightful support is taken from the texts.    
ORGANIZATIONAL The writing lacks a clear sense of direction, ideas, details, or events seem strung together in a random haphazard fashion-or else there is no identifiable internal structure at all. 

  The organizational structure is strong enough to move the reader from point to point without undue confusion.   The organization enhances and showcases the central ideas or theme.  The order, structure, or presentation is compelling and moves the reader through the text.    
VOICE The writer seems indifferent uninvolved or inappropriately distanced from the topic and/or the audience.  The writing seems flat, lifeless or mechanical; depending on the topic, it may be overly technical or jargonistic.   The writer seems sincere, but not genuinely engaged, committed, or involved.  The result is pleasant and sometimes even personable, but short of compelling.  May not be appropriate for the type of writing.   The writer speaks directly to the reader in a way that is appropriate to the type of writing; individualistic, expressive, & engaging.  Clearly, the writer is involved in the text and is writing to be read.    
WORD CHOICE The writer struggles with a limited vocabulary, searching for words to convey meaning.     The language is functional, even if it lacks punch; it does get the message across.   Words convey the intended message in an interesting precise and natural way.  The writing is full and rich, yet concise.    
SENTENCE FLUENCY The paper is difficult to follow or to read aloud.  Sentences tend to be choppy, incomplete, rambling irregular, or just very awkward.   The text hums along efficiently for the most part, though it may lack a certain rhythm or grace.  It tends to be more pleasant or businesslike than musical, more mechanical than fluid.   The writing has an easy flow & rhythm when read aloud.  Sentences are well built, with consistently strong and varied structure that makes expressive oral reading easy & enjoyable.    
CONVENTIONS Mistakes really get in the way of understanding the writing.  The reader has to read once to “decode” and then again to get all the meaning.

  The reader notices some mistakes.  They are a little bothersome, but they do not slow the reader down too much.   Even careful reading reveals no glaring errors.  The conventions are used so well that they make it easier to read the paper.    



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