Comments to English 104 Students

English 104 students,

Your grade in this writing assignment is based on your ability to address the following writing task:

Writing Assignment 2: How Things Get to Be Cool

The cartoon sequence (Figure 1 and 2 below) presents an implicit theory about how––and why––things get to be “cool.” After a careful reading of the cartoon, you are asked to evaluate derf’s theory of “how it works.” In other words, you will be testing his theory against your own experience of shifting fads and fashions, of how things come to be “in,” and how they go “out” again.

During the course of the essay, address the following:

1. Pin down what derf’s theory actually is.

2. Interpret the meaning or “message” presented by derf.

3. Choose a fad or style that you or close friends adopted and see how closely derf’s theory explains your experience.

Your essay should make it clear whether your experience affirms, revises, or refutes derf’s theory. Shoot for 3-4 pages.

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I am using this rubric to grade your essay.

(Superior):  90-100

1       addresses the topic clearly and responds effectively to all aspects of the task;

2       explores the issues thoughtfully and in depth;

3       is coherently and logically organized, with ideas supported by apt reasons and well-chosen examples;

4       is generally free from errors in mechanics, usage, and sentence structure.

(Strong):   80-89

1       clearly addresses the topic, but may respond to some aspects of the task more effectively than others;

2       shows some depth and complexity of thought;

3       is well-organized and developed with appropriate reasons and examples;

4       displays syntactic variety and facility in the use of language;

5       may have a few errors in mechanics, usage, and sentence structure.

(Adequate): 70-79

1       addresses the topic, but may slight some aspects of the task;

2       may treat the topic simplistically or repetitively;

3       is adequately organized and developed, generally supporting ideas with reasons and examples;

4       displays adequate facility with syntax and language;

5       may have some errors, but generally demonstrates control of mechanics, usage, and sentence structure.

(Inadequate): 60-69  An essay in this category reveals one or more of the following  weaknesses:

1       distorts or neglects aspects of the task

2       includes an incomplete portolio, missing some of the following: draft one and self-assessment notes, draft two and peer reviews (two readers), and draft three and editing notes;

3       lacks focus, or demonstrates confused or simplistic thinking;

4       is poorly organized or developed;

5       does not provide adequate or appropriate details to support generalizations, or provides details without generalizations;

6       has problems with or avoids syntactic variety;

7       has an accumulation of errors in mechanics, usage, and sentence structure.

(Incoherent): 50-59  An essay in this category reveals one or more of the following weaknesses:

1       indicates confusion about the topic or neglects important aspects of the task;

2       includes an incomplete portolio, missing some of the following: draft one and self-assessment notes, draft two and peer reviews (two readers), and draft three and editing notes;

3       lacks focus and coherence, or often fails to communicate its ideas;

4       has very weak organization, too little development;

5       provides simplistic generalizations without support;

6       has inadequate sentence control and a limited vocabulary;

7       has numerous errors in mechanics, usage, and sentence structure.

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