Term 1: Basic Academic Writing
THESIS STATEMENT/CLAIM/BODY THESIS/TOPIC SENTENCE:
- Sentence is irrelevant to the prompt or text: World War Two was a difficult time in human history.
- Sentence is related to the prompt or text, but it does NOT contain a clear, specific statement which argues a relevant opinion: The two pilots in “Paths of Hate” wouldn’t give up their fight no matter how much it cost them.
- Sentence DOES contain a clear, specific statement which argues a relevant opinion: The battle between the two pilots illustrates how hatred can become a destructive addiction not unlike any illicit drug.
- Sentence contains a clear, specific statement that argues a relevant and insightful opinion: As the white paths turn red, we learn that hatred, even if motivated by right or good intentions, has the potential to release the destructive, mindless beast that lies inside all of humanity.
- Argument (or claim) is not supported by textual examples: In “Look at Your Fish,” someone is told to look at their fish.
- Textual support is present, but it does not logically support the argument: The planes in “Paths of Hate,” are a Supermarine Spitfire Mk.Vc and a Messerschmitt Bf 109a2.
- Textual support logically supports the argument, but it is generic or obvious: The pilots decide to turn back toward the fight after deciding earlier to give it up.
- Textual support specifically and strongly supports the argument in an interesting or insightful way: The contrails early in the film, create helix patterns much like human DNA, and the red lines near the end of the film create patterns mimicking neural pathways or synapses in the brain.
- Does not contain commentary or uses summary, paraphrase, or textual support as commentary: The ammunition within in the planes in “Paths of Hate” depletes as the pilots fall further under the influence of their hate.
- Contains very little (less than a two to one ratio) commentary to explain the relationship between the textual support and the argument: The pilots decide to turn back toward the fight after deciding earlier to give it up. This shows that hate has consumed them.
- Contains relevant commentary (in at least a two to one ratio) which builds a clear relationship between the textual support and the argument: The pilots decide to turn back toward the fight after deciding earlier to give it up. This choice, even though there is no longer any hope of defeating the enemy or personal survival, illustrates that hate has completely consumed them and made them irrational. Obviously, winning is no longer the point - the fight is its own reward.
- Commentary (in at least a two to one ratio) convincingly ties concrete detail to the argument and illustrates critical thinking: The pilots decide to turn back toward the fight after deciding earlier to give it up. This choice, even though there is no longer any hope of defeating the enemy or personal survival, illustrates that hate has completely consumed them and made them irrational. This behavior pattern can be seen in many real-world situations from drug addiction to the Palestinian-Israeli conflict.
- Voice is completely inappropriate for an academic paper: So, I says to you, I says, “Like, dude, that film was soooo extra.”
- Frequently uses first or second-person pronouns, past-tense verbs, or unqualified absolutes: Everyone thinks, like I do, that the pilots in “Paths of Hate” were just as addicted to hate as you are to your phone.
- Generally uses third-person pronouns, contains no second-person pronouns, and contains almost no unqualified absolutes: We see that the pilots in “Paths of Hate” are just as addicted to hate as many of us are to our phones.
- Contains no unqualified absolutes nor second-person pronouns and consistently uses third-person (tending toward clear, and concise writing): The pilots in “Paths of Hate” hold desperately to hate in the same way that many people hold to their phones.
- Most verbs are “to be” verbs, many verbs lack a clear agent, and that reliance on passive construction dulls engagement: The planes were flown into each other by the pilots who were flying them and lines were made in the sky. They are so set on killing each other, they are willing to die to do it. Fuel tanks are emptied, ammunition is spent, and humanity is lost. Still, there is no satisfaction or conclusion to the conflict.
- Some active verbs with clear agents are present, but passive construction still pervades. The active construction makes engagement better, but the passive still hampers meaning: Enraged, and despite the fact that they are out of fuel and ammunition, the pilots turn back toward each other. Then they are thrown into final battle they are not able to survive. They are left, finally, without their planes or their guns. Still the objective of both is the destruction of the other. They are obviously more interested in killing each other than saving themselves.
- Active construction makes up the majority of the writing. Verbs have clear agents. Some passive voice remains, and its purpose isn’t clear, still impeding brevity and engagement. Choosing their hatred for each other over self-preservation, the pilots pull hard on the controls and hurtle back toward each other. They are obviously focused on killing rather than surviving. This attitude illustrates the destructive power of hate. Their actions illustrate that the loss of family, religion, and even humanity itself can seem insignificant compared to the twisted pleasure hate and revenge offer.
- Active construction pervades, and what little passive construction remains is purposeful and adds to, rather than detracts from, the engagement and clarity of the writing: Choosing their hatred for each other over self-preservation, the pilots whip back around, intent on killing rather than surviving. The destructive power of hate overshadows reason and morality, so that the loss of family, religion, and even humanity itself seems insignificant compared to the twisted pleasure hate and revenge offer. They are lost.
Term 1: Subtext Extraction / Inferencing
SUBTEXT EXTRACTION / INFERENCING
- No evidence of subtextual extraction or inference: “Paths of Hate” is about two WWII pilots who are trying to kill each other at all costs; but really only destroy themselves.
- Minimal inferencing, but lacks support for assertions: “Paths of Hate” is about two WWII pilots who are trying to kill each other even at the expense of family or religion; but really only destroy themselves.
- Good evidence of extraction and inferencing with valid support, but the inference or support tends to be surface-level or the obvious choice: “Paths of Hate” warns that, as the pilots break rosary beads or bloody and lose a loved one’s image, hatred can be all consuming. It can lead to the loss of religion, family, or even, as the end of the film suggests, humanity itself.
- Heavy evidence of well-supported inferencing which tends toward deep, insightful thinking: The contrails early in the film, create helix patterns much like human DNA, and the red lines near the end of the film create patterns mimicking neural pathways or synapses in the brain. These visual metaphors tie the action in the film to all of humanity, suggesting that the path to hate lies buried within each individual waiting for an excuse to break free. Human nature, and therefore human history, is violent, vengeful, and irrational and must be overcome.
Term 2: Argument
Student rubrics coming soon.
Terms 3 - 4: AP General Rubric
AP ENGLISH LITERATURE AND COMPOSITION GENERAL RUBRIC
9 - 8
These essays offer a well-focused and persuasive analysis of the prompt. Using apt and specific textual support, these essays explore the prompt in complex and insightful ways (including how the prompted elements of the work contribute the meaning as a whole). Although not without flaws, these essays make a strong case for their interpretation and discuss the literary work with significant insight and understanding. Generally, essays scoring 9 reveal more sophisticated analysis and more effective control of language than do essays scoring 8.
7 - 6
These essays offer a reasonable analysis of the prompt. These essays explore the prompt with textual support in complex ways (including the prompted elements contribution to the meaning as a whole). Although these responses show insight and understanding, their analysis is less thorough, less perceptive, and/or less specific in supporting detail than that of the 9 or 8 essays. Generally, essays scoring 7 present better-developed analysis and more consistent command of the elements of effective composition than do essays scoring 6.
These essays respond to the assigned task with a plausible reading, but they tend to be superficial or thinly developed in analysis. They often rely upon plot summary that contains some analysis, implicit or explicit. Although these responses attempt to discuss how the prompted elements contributes to the meaning of the work, they may demonstrate a rather simplistic understanding of the work, and the support from the text may be too general. These essays demonstrate adequate control of language but may be marred by surface errors. They are generally not as well conceived, organized, or developed as those scoring 6.
4 - 3
These lower-half essays fail to offer an adequate analysis of the prompt. The analysis may be partial, unsupported, or irrelevant, and the essays may reflect and incomplete or oversimplified understanding. They may not develop a response to how the prompted elements contribute to the overall meaning of the work, or they may rely on summary alone. These essays may be characterized by an unfocused or repetitive presentation of ideas, an absence of textual support, or an accumulation of errors; they may lack control over the elements of college-level composition. Essays scoring 3 may contain significant misreading and demonstrate inept writing.
2 - 1
Although these essays make some attempt to respond to the prompt, they compound the weaknesses of the papers in the 4 or 3 range. Often, they are unacceptably brief or are incoherent in presenting their ideas. They may be poorly written on several counts and contain distracting errors in grammar and mechanics. Remarks are presented with little clarity, organization, or supporting evidence. Particularly inept, vacuous, and/or incoherent essays are scored 1.