1. General Specifications

  • Does the formatting (margins, line spacing, font size, citations, bibliography, etc.) follow the assigned specifications?
  • Are the topic and length suitable to one another and appropriate to the assignment, and have I completed everything assigned?

2. Clarity of Organization

  • Does the introduction state the thesis clearly and suggest how the thesis will be argued in the body?
  • Does the body develop the stated thesis in distinct parts that are connected by clear transitions?
  • Does the conclusion tie together the main ideas from the body and restate the thesis from the introduction?

3. Quality of Writing

  • Have I avoided spelling mistakes?
  • Have I avoided grammatical errors (especially tense shifts and pronoun-antecedent disagreements)?
  • Have I composed compelling sentences, avoided clichés, and employed action verbs in the active voice?
  • Have I organized sentences into paragraphs, each of which emphasizes a singular, clear theme?
  • Have I engaged my particular audience in an effective manner?

4. Depth of Analysis

  • Does the essay draw from appropriate source materials, analyzing quotations in detail?
  • Have I placed the sources and their subject matter in their respective contexts (historical, philosophical, theological, etc.)?
  • Have I offered original and convincing insights?
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