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Massachusetts Comprehensive Assessment System

2017, Grade 8 English Language Arts

Download PDF Document  Question 10: Essay

 

Reporting Category: Language and Writing
Standard: CCSS.ELA-Literacy.CCRA.L.1 - Demonstrate command of the conventions of standard English grammar and usage when writing or speaking.
Standard: CCSS.ELA-Literacy.CCRA.L.2 - Demonstrate command of the conventions of standard English capitalization, punctuation, and spelling when writing.
Standard: CCSS.ELA-Literacy.CCRA.L.3 - Apply knowledge of language to understand how language functions in different contexts, to make effective choices for meaning or style, and to comprehend more fully when reading or listening.
Standard: CCSS.ELA-Literacy.CCRA.W.2 - Write informative/explanatory texts to examine and convey complex ideas and information clearly and accurately through the effective selection, organization, and analysis of content. [Note: These broad types of writing include many subgenres. See Appendix A for definitions of key writing types.]

Standard: CCSS.ELA-Literacy.CCRA.W.4 - Produce clear and coherent writing in which the development, organization, and style are appropriate to task, purpose, and audience.
Item Description: Write an essay explaining similarities between characters from two different excerpts; use information from both excerpts to support the explanation.


Download PDF Document  View Reading Selection

This question is a text-based essay question. Your essay should:
  • Present and develop a central idea.
  • Provide evidence/details from the passage(s).
  • Include correct grammar, spelling, and punctuation.
Based on To Kill a Mockingbird and A Part of the Sky, write an essay explaining the similarities between Walter Cunningham and Robert Peck. Be sure to use information from both excerpts to develop your essay.

Scoring Guide for Idea Development

Select a score point in the table below to view the sample student response.

ScoreDescription
5
  • Central idea is insightful and fully developed
  • Skillful selection and explanation of evidence/details
  • Skillful and/or subtle organization
  • Rich expression of ideas
  • Full awareness of the task/mode
5
4
  • Central idea is clear and well-developed
  • Effective selection and explanation of evidence/details
  • Effective organization
  • Clear expression of ideas
  • Full awareness of the task/mode
3
  • Central idea is general and moderately developed
  • Appropriate selection and explanation of evidence/details
  • Moderate organization
  • Adequate expression of ideas
  • Sufficient awareness of the task/mode
2
  • Central idea may be present and is somewhat developed
  • Limited selection and explanation of evidence/details
  • Limited organization
  • Basic expression of ideas
  • Partial awareness of the task/mode
1
  • Central idea is not developed
  • Insufficient evidence/details
  • Minimal organization
  • Poor expression of ideas
  • Minimal awareness of the task/mode
0
  • The response shows evidence the student has read the text, but does not address the question or incorrectly responds to the question.
Note: There are 2 sample student responses for Score Point 5.

Scoring Guide for Standard English Conventions

Select a score point in the table below to view the sample student response.

ScoreDescription
3
  • Consistent control of a variety of sentence structures relative to length of essay
  • Consistent control of grammar, usage and mechanics relative to complexity and/or length of essay
2
  • Mostly consistent control of sentence structures relative to length of essay
  • Mostly consistent control of grammar, usage and mechanics relative to complexity and/or length of essay
1
  • Little control and/or no variety in sentence structure and/or
  • Little control of grammar, usage and mechanics relative to complexity and/or insufficient length
0
  • Sentences are formed incorrectly with no control of grammar, usage and mechanics and/or insufficient length

Return to the MCAS 2017 Student Work Directory

Last Updated: November 18, 2019

 
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