Essay Writing Rubric for Quick Assignment Evaluation

Find it difficult to evaluate your essay? Want to know how a teacher will grade your essay and what criteria he will focus on when checking your piece? If it is the case of yours, this article will answer your questions and will help you understand how teachers assess students’ essay writing. Use our essay writing rubric as a specific criterion to understand how to gain the max score. 

If used effectively, rubric for writing an essay can help improve students’ writing and get to know what things to focus on in order to deliver a solid piece to bring you an A.

How to use a rubric for essay writing?

There many several scenarios when the college essay writing rubric makes the students’ life easier. Here is how you can use it:

  • The best way to use a grading rubric for essay writing is to check it before you take the writing assignment at work. Thus, you will review all the assessment criteria and check specific examples of what is expected from you;
  • Thus, when getting assigned to the essay writing task, you will keep in mind the criteria and expectations for the result to be delivered;
  • Having completed the essay writing task, use the criteria from the scoring rubric for essay writing to grade the work yourself and then ask your friend to do the same. This peer-grading/ peer-editing process is an easy way to see how well you did on the assignment and what key points you should fix in the future. It’s also a good exercise to sharpen your writing skills and become a better writer;
  • After peer-editing, deliver an essay to the teacher and get an estimated result. Check how your essay is evaluated according to the criteria on the rubric. Pay special attention to the points that are marked as issues and check examples if you didn’t meet some of the criteria.

Rubric for an informal essay

Writing quality:

  • Expert – the essay is well written with an excellent style, tone of voice, and a good structure;
  • Accomplished – the essay is written with a good style, unique voice but has some minor issues with its structure;
  • Capable – the essay is written in a good style (with some minor issues) but has less informative content and could be organized in a better way;
  • Beginner – the author’s style is impossible to identify, and the essay has a poor structure/ content.
  • Grammar/ punctuation/ formulation mechanics:
  • Expert – no spelling, punctuation, grammar, word-choice errors;
  • Accomplished – there are a few errors in the essay;
  • Capable – there are some spelling and grammar errors that do not spoil the general impression from reading the text;
  • Beginner – there are many mistakes that complicate reading the text and interfere with the meaning.

Rubric for a formal essay

Idea assessment:

  • Expert – ideas are presented in an original manner;
  • Accomplished – ideas are presented in a consistent manner;
  • Capable – presented ideas are too general;
  • Beginner – ideas the author presents are unclear and vague.

Essay organization:

  • Expert – the essay has a solid structure, with each its part effectively serving its purpose;
  • Accomplished – the paper has an intro, body, and conclusion;
  • Capable – there is an attempt of a proper paper organization; there are some minor issues with the paper structure;
  • Beginner – the essay has no clear structure, or some parts of it are missing.


  • Expert – strong arguments and clear language is used in an essay;
  • Accomplished – writing shows a good understanding of the theme;
  • Capable – the writing demonstrates some basic understanding of the theme;
  • Beginner – the author has a very limited understanding of the topic.

Word choice:

  • Expert – sophisticated use of verbs, adjectives, and nouns, which makes the essay informative and interesting to read;
  • Accomplished – word choice makes the paper rather informative;
  • Capable – there are some minor issues with the word selection;
  • Beginner – improper use of verbs and nouns; basic vocabulary is used.

Sentence structure:

  • Expert – sentence structure emphasizes the intended message and ensures smooth flow of thought throughout the piece;
  • Accomplished – sentence structure is rather effective;
  • Capable – sentence structure is somehow limited; no connection between sentences in some points; 
  • Beginner – No sense of sentence structure or content development.


  • Expert – a couple of/ no errors in the text;
  • Accomplished – some errors;
  • Capable – several errors;
  • Beginner – too many errors.

The use of essay writing rubric

The use of a specific rubric for essay writing in high schools makes the lives of students easier. By knowing all the essay writing assessment criteria, you know what to focus on in order to deliver an A-grade piece. Check the above table to check the writing assignment yourself before the submit.

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