Skip to Content

College of Arts & Sciences
First-Year English

'D' Paper




  • Thesis is present but vague or not central to argument
  • Unfocused or does not address assignment



Content & Development



  • Does not develop ideas adequately
  • Analysis is weak or cursory
  • Inadequate understanding of the text(s), ideas and methods of the assignment
  • Digresses or does not adequately address the assignment
  • Confuses some significant concepts



Research & Support


  • Examination of text(s) does not show evidence of basic comprehension
  • Evidence includes inadequate support from text(s) and/or outside sources
  • Insufficient or awkward textual support or use of source material





  • Overall organization is inadequate
  • Paragraphs are not coherent
  • Inadequate transitions
  • Illogical arrangement of ideas or wanders from one topic to another



Language & Mechanics


  • Awkward sentence structures and/or major patterns of grammar errors which do not impact comprehension
  • Suffers from wordiness, limited vocabulary and or awkward word choice
  • Not academic tone





Cites evidence and source material though inconsistently and/or the convention is not MLA