Evaluation and Grading Criteria for Courses Taught by Prof. Michael Marks

Evaluation of Written Work

An excellent paper will demonstrate excellence in the following:

1. It will be well written in terms of prose, grammar, and syntax.

2. It will be well organized and follow a logical progression of thoughts.

3. It will have a clearly stated and cogent thesis.

4. Its thesis will be supported by logical arguments.

5. Its thesis will be balanced with an assessment of counter-arguments and/or competing explanations.

6. It will cite relevant course readings and other material as relevant.

7. It will be illustrated with empirical examples and other factual material as relevant.

8. It will have the appropriate scope, i.e., not too narrow or broad in focus.

9. It will respond directly to the question posed in the assignment.

10. It will adopt an analytical (not partisan) tone unless otherwise directed.

Grading Criteria

Generally speaking, when affixing grades to essays and other assignments, I adhere to the qualitative assessments associated with letter grades as specified in the CLA Catalog:

A = Excellent
B = Good
C = Satisfactory
D = Below Standard
F = Failing

See http://www.willamette.edu/cla/catalog/resources/policies/