Ap english essay types

They develop their argument by synthesizing at least three sources, but how they use and explain sources is somewhat uneven, inconsistent, or limited. The writer's argument is generally clear, and the sources generally develop the writer's position, but the links between the sources and the argument may be strained. The writing may contain lapses in diction or syntax, but it usually conveys the student's ideas. You did respond to the prompt. You used and cited at least 3 of the sources in creating your argument, but you did not use all of them particularly effectively.

The connection between the documents and your argument is underdeveloped. Your writing is mostly understandable but may have errors.

AP English Language and Composition

Essays earning a score of 4 inadequately address the task in the prompt. They develop their argument by synthesizing at least two sources, but the evidence or explanations used may be inappropriate, insufficient, or unconvincing. The sources may dominate the essay's attempts at development, the link between the argument and the sources may be weak, or the student may misunderstand, misrepresent, or oversimplify the sources. The prose generally conveys the student's ideas but may be inconsistent in controlling the elements of effective writing.


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You did not adequately respond to the prompt. You used and cited at least two sources, but you did not effectively link them to your argument. Your essay may summarize sources instead of truly taking a position, or you may have misread the sources. Your writing is not consistently clear. Essays earning a score of 3 meet the criteria for the score of 4 but demonstrate less success in addressing the task.

They are less perceptive in their understanding of the sources, or their explanation or examples may be particularly limited or simplistic. The essays may show less maturity in their control of writing. Your essay did not adequately respond to the prompt. Your interpretation of the sources is incorrect or your argument is overly simplistic.


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Your writing is overly basic or unclear. Essays earning a score of demonstrate little success in addressing the task in the prompt. They may merely allude to knowledge gained from reading the sources rather than cite the sources themselves. These essays may misread the sources, fail to develop a position, or substitute a simpler task by merely summarizing or categorizing the sources or by merely responding to the prompt tangentially with unrelated, inaccurate, or inappropriate explanation.

Essays that score 2 often demonstrate consistent weaknesses in writing, such as grammatical problems, a lack of development or organization, or a lack of control. You barely addressed the prompt. You may not cite any sources directly, misunderstand the sources, never take a position, or write things that are not relevant to the prompt. Writing is very weak, including grammatical issues. Essays earning a score of 1 meet the criteria for the score of 2 but are undeveloped, especially simplistic in their explanation, weak in their control of writing, or do not allude to or cite even one source.

Types of Essays on AP English Exams by Mike Callaghan on Prezi

Your writing barely addressed the prompt. Explanations are extremely simple, writing is incredibly weak, or sources are not used or cited at all. Indicates an off-topic response, one that merely repeats the prompt, an entirely crossed-out response, a drawing, or a response in a language other than English. Essays earning a score of 9 meet the criteria for the score of 8 and, in addition, are especially sophisticated in their argument, thorough in their development, or impressive in their control of language. You achieved everything an 8 essay did, but the quality of either your argument or your writing is exceptional.

They develop their analysis with evidence and explanations that are appropriate and convincing, referring to the passage explicitly or implicitly. You successfully and persuasively analyzed the rhetoric of the excerpt in a way that is strongly supported by specific examples in the text. Your writing is versatile and strong. You achieved everything a 6 essay did, but your argument was either better explained or supported or your writing was of a higher caliber. They develop their analysis with evidence and explanations that are appropriate and sufficient, referring to the passage explicitly or implicitly.

The essay may contain lapses in diction or syntax, but generally the prose is clear. You successfully analyzed the rhetoric of the excerpt, using appropriate references to the text. Your writing was generally understandable. Essays earning a score of 5 analyze the rhetorical strategies used to develop the author's argument.

The evidence or explanations used may be uneven, inconsistent, or limited. You analyzed the rhetoric of the excerpt, although evidence from the passage may have been poorly used or deployed.

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These essays may misunderstand the passage, misrepresent the strategies the author uses, or may analyze these strategies insufficiently. The evidence or explanations used may be inappropriate, insufficient, or unconvincing. You did not analyze the rhetoric in the passage in a reasonable way. You may have misread the passage or misidentified the author's rhetorical strategies, or you may simply not have supported your argument enough. Textual evidence may not be appropriate to the task at hand. They are less perceptive in their understanding of the passage or the author's strategies, or the explanations or examples may be particularly limited or simplistic.

The essays may show less maturity in control of writing. A 3 essay has similar weaknesses to a 4 essay, but displays less understanding of the passage or the author's intent. The writing may also be even more inconsistent or basic. These essays may misunderstand the prompt, misread the passage, fail to analyze the strategies used, or substitute a simpler task by responding to the prompt tangentially with unrelated, inaccurate, or inappropriate explanation. The essays often demonstrate consistent weaknesses in writing, such as grammatical problems, a lack of development or organization, or a lack of control.

You barely analyzed the passage. You may have misunderstood the assigned task, seriously misread the passage or the author's intent, or responded to something other than the prompt.

Tips on writing AP English argumentative essay body paragraphs

Writing is consistently weak. Essays earning a score of 1 meet the criteria for the score of 2 but are undeveloped, especially simplistic in their explanation, or weak in their control of language.

Rhetorical Analysis: Explaining Strategies

A 1 essay is has similar weaknesses to a 2 essay, but is even more poorly supported or poorly written. Essays earning a score of 9 meet the criteria for the score of 8 and, in addition, are especially sophisticated in their argument, thorough in their development, or particularly impressive in their control of language.

You meet the criteria for an 8, plus you have either a particularly strong argument, strong support, or strong writing. Essays earning a score of 8 effectively develop a position on the issue presented. The evidence and explanations used are appropriate and convincing, and the argument is especially coherent and well developed.

AP English Argumentative Essay: Write an A-Level Paper

You persuasively address the prompt, using strong evidence to support your argument. Your writing is strong but not necessarily perfect. Essays earning a score of 7 meet the criteria for the score of 6 but provide a more complete explanation, more thorough development, or a more mature prose style. A 7 essay meets the criteria for a 6 essay but is either better-argued, better-supported, or more well-written. Essays earning a score of 6 adequately develop a position on the issue presented.

The evidence and explanations used are appropriate and sufficient, and the argument is coherent and adequately developed.