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Bacc. II
Senior Essay Review & Checklists
You need to ask these questions on your reader's behalf & answer them appropriately.

A Good Argument should offer:

The more your argument asks readers to change their minds, the more significant it will seem to them.

Making strong claims

A claim is significant to the extent that it changes how people believe

Offering reliable evidence

Kinds of Warrants make a claim provide evidence or grounds to support that claim provide a warrant, or a general principle that explains why you think your evidence is relevant to your claim provide qualifications that make your claim and evidence precise and meaningful
  1. raise objections and alternatives to your claims
  2. anticipate objections readers might have
  3. concede what you cannot refute
  4. stipulate limiting conditions
  5. limit the scope and certainty of your claim and evidence
Does the Rough Draft include
-Title page (header, page number, running head,...)
    Check the following page for more info:
-Table of contents
-Definition of terms/concepts/keywords
-Statement of Purpose (The aim/purpose of this study is to...)
-Final outline
-Title (again) + Research Question (that you have to refer back to throughout your essay)
-Introduction (thesis/claim/argument)
-Body including titles & subtitles + evidence, warrant, reservations, in-text citations
-References APA format
-Appendix (including the preliminary outline and all the documents you have already given me: second outline if any, first draft, interviews, surveys, hard copies, etc...)

+ Illustrations

For in-text citation format go to these pages:

Be CREATIVE & make it interesting, logical, and coherent!
Don't forget to hand in a copy on a floppy disc as well!

It does not serve as an introduction but presents a synopsis of the extended essay, and therefore should be written last.
The minimum requirements for an abstract are to state clearly:
*the research question being investigated
*the scope of the investigation
*the conclusion/s of the essay

It should be placed immediately after the title page.

Contents Page
A contents page must be placed after the abstract and all pages should be numbered.

Definition of Terms/Concepts
In order for the reader to understand very well what you are talking about, you have to define all the difficult terms and the keywords/concepts.

Statement of Purpose
Why did you choose this topic? What do you expect to learn? How do you think it will benefit your classmates/reader/audience? (You NEED to sound extremely enthusiastic!)

Does the introduction include:

The essential feature of the body is a convincing answer to the research question. The structure and approach will depend on the subject in which the essay is being undertaken. Scientific investigations will usually have separate sections for method and results. Titles for major paragraphs and sub-titles are essential.

The requirements of a conclusion are that it

Does the conclusion follow these requirements?

The direct or indirect use of the words of another person, written , oral or electronic, must be acknowledged appropriately as must visual material in the essay, derived from another source. Failure to do this will be viewed as plagiarism.
The bibliography or list of references should only include those works, such as books and journals, that have been consulted by you. It is good practice to study a major style of referencing appropriate to the subject of the essay so that you can present your references professionally.
Each work consulted, regardless or whether or not it has already been cited as a reference, must be listed in the bibliography.

Presentation and overall neatness are important, and it is essential that illustrative material, if included, is well set out and used effectively. Graphs, diagrams, tables and maps are effective only if they are well labelled and can be easily read. This must be directly related to the text and acknowledged where appropriate. The use of photographs and postcards is acceptable only if they are captioned and/or annotated and are used to illustrate a specific point made in the essay.

Assessment of Senior Essays

General Assessment Criteria
These criteria are mainly concerned with the writing of the abstract and conclusion, the use of information and data, and the overall presentation.

A Research Question & Thesis
The research question (or specific issue to be investigated) is clearly and precisely stated and is sharply focused and is therefore susceptible to effective treatment within the word limit. The thesis refers back to the research question.

B Data Information
The data gathered/generated and/or background information selected is directly relevant to the research.

C Analysis/Evaluation
The data/information derived has been systematically and competently analysed using appropriate and correctly applied techniques.Where an evaluation is appropriate a range of interpretations have been considered and their merit appraised.

D Discussion/Argument
The discussion/argument is consistently relevant to the research question (or specific issue being investigated) and is well organised and therefore easy to follow.

E Conclusion
The conclusion is clearly stated, is relevant to the research question and fully substantiated by the evidence presented. If appropriate, the conclusion clearly indicates unresolved questions and new questions that have emerged from the research.

F Abstract
Within the Abstract, the research question, the scope of the investigation and the conclusion(s) reached are all clearly stated.

G Overall Presentation
Running head- header- double space- font 12- page numbers- titles for major parts- sub-titles- purpose- definition of terms/concepts ...

H Language and mechanics
Sentence structure, grammar, spelling, coherence, cohesion, punctuation ...

Senior Essay Checklist
Judge the essay against these criteria:

  1. Is the essay a reasoned argument in which the writer endeavours to persuade a skeptical reader of the justifiability of the line of argument adopted?
  2. Is there an argument? Is each part of it clear? Is it easy to understand and does it make sense? (The argument should be clear from the beginning and not tacked on the end)
  3. Does the essay develop logically through a series of arguments or points?
  4. What evidence is used to support arguments (too little, too much, inappropriate)?
  5. Does the essay show evidence of the imaginative use of a variety of sources (precising one or more source is not adequate)?
  6. Is the essay clear and readable? (Pay attention to grammar and spelling)
  7. Does the essay contain repetitive or irrelevant material?
  8. Has a bibliography of all materials consulted been included? Does it follow the APA style?
  9. Are all quotations properly cited/footnoted?
  10. Has a word count been included, and is the essay within limits?
  11. Presentation: Has the essay been word processed, allowing double space between lines and a 12-point font?

This page was adapted by Nada AbiSamra from:

Wayne C. Booth, Gregory G. Colomb, and Joseph M. Williams: The Craft of Research
(I would like to thank Mr. Bill Livingston --English Coordinator at ACS-- for providing me with a copy of this article and for all his help with the senior/extended essay material. Nada AbiSamra)

Extended Essay Guidelines

The university of Liverpool- Guidelines for extended essay

Official home page of the International Baccalaureate Organization

S E N I O R   E S S A Y  Evaluation Sheet

Name ______________________________________________________________________

Title _______________________________________________________________________

Research Question ____________________________________________________________


Subject Advisor's name _____________________________________________________

Grade given ____________________________

Comments ___________________________________________________________________




What needs to be improved/added _______________________________________________




Name of evaluator _____________________________

Evaluator's Signature

Date ___________________________________

Teacher Grade: _________________________