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Evaluating an Analysis of a Game

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Close Reading a Game Rubric


US12B (Winter 2009) Paper #2 FINAL VERSION - Grading Rubric - Close Reading of a Computer Game

Grade / Score

Research Question & Thesis

Development of Thesis

Research and Support


Language, Mechanics, and Format

A   (4)

essay controlled by clear, precise, well-defined thesis: is sophisticated in both statement and insight; explicitly targets a particular element of the computer game

has cogent analysis, shows command of interpretive and conceptual tasks required by assignment and course materials: ideas are original and insightful, building on discussion and lecture; persuasive reasoning develops and supports thesis

examines the game deeply and carefully in order to inform thoughtful analysis; and/or uses several authoritative and credible sources, screenshots, or supplemental game materials; well-chosen examples and quotations from sources supports development of thesis

strong introduction and conclusion paragraphs; arrangement of paragraphs seems particularly apt; appropriate, clear and smooth transitions; excellent use of topic sentences

uses sophisticated sentences effectively; usually chooses words aptly; observes conventions of written English; APA citation format; few minor or technical errors

B   (3)

clear, specific, argumentative thesis central to the essay; defines a narrow element for analysis in a computer game

pursues thesis consistently; shows a good understanding of the texts, ideas and methods of the assignment; may have left minor terms undefined; goes beyond the obvious; may have one minor factual or conceptual inconsistency

examines the game thoughtfully; and/or a few strong sources and a few non-authoritative or poorly used sources, screenshots, or supplemental game materials; develops a main argument with clear major points, appropriate game evidence, and supporting detail

introduction and conclusion paragraphs exist; makes an effort to organize paragraphs topically; distinct units of thought in paragraphs controlled by good topic sentences; clear transitions between developed, cohering, and logically arranged paragraphs that are internally cohesive

some mechanical difficulties or stylistic problems; may make occasional problematic or sloppy word choices or awkward syntax errors; a few spelling or punctuation errors or clichés; mostly presents quotations and sources effectively in APA format

C  (2)

general thesis or controlling idea exists; focus of argument is too general or vague and needs significant improvement

game analysis is general or shallow, could be improved with additional support sources or screenshots/diagrams; shows an understanding of the basic ideas involved in the assignment; may not define several central terms; may have some factual, interpretive, or conceptual errors; only partially develops the argument; some ideas and generalizations undeveloped or unsupported

only somewhat pertinent and authoritative sources; makes limited use of evidence from the game, outside sources, or other materials; fails to integrate quotations appropriately

introduction and conclusion paragraphs weak; some awkward transitions; some brief, weakly unified or undeveloped paragraphs; arrangement may not appear entirely natural; contains extraneous information

more frequent wordiness; several unclear or awkward sentences; imprecise use of words or over-reliance on passive voice; one or two major grammatical errors (subject-verb agreement, comma splice, etc.); effort to present quotations accurately; citations & sources not used in a consistent format

D  (1)

thesis vague or not central to argument; offers an unfocused direction toward analyzing the game

extremely weak or cursory analysis of game; significant factual and conceptual errors; central terms not defined; confuses some significant ideas; frequently only narrates; digresses from one topic to another without developing ideas or terms

minimal evidence from game; few sources, all weak, possibly questionable; makes insufficient or awkward use of research

no introduction or conclusion paragraphs; wanders from one topic to another; illogical arrangement of ideas; paragraphs not coherent

multiple significant grammatical or proofreading errors (subject-verb agreement; sentence fragments); language marred by clichés, colloquialisms, repeated inexact word choices; inappropriate quotation or citation format

F  (0)

no discernible thesis; does not attempt to analyze game

flow of argument is hard to follow; no new ideas; primarily narration, plot summary, or unsupported personal opinion

no acceptable sources; uses no quotations or fails to cite sources

no introduction or conclusion; no transitions; incoherent paragraphs; suggests poor planning or no serious revision

numerous grammatical errors and stylistic problems seriously distract from the argument

Grade for category