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Assessing Writing Descriptive Text

O’Malley and Pierce (1996) state that writing assessment should evaluate more aspects of writing than just mechanic and grammar, and should capture some of the processes and complexity involved in writing so that the teacher can know in which aspects of the writing process students are having different. Two important components in the assessment of writing are the nature of task, or prompt and the scoring criteria or rubric. Djiwandono (1999) and O’Malley and Pierce (1996) stated that a writing prompt defines the task for the students’ writing assessment. Furthermore, O’Malley and Pierce (1996) state that writing assessment can be used most effectively with instruction when the criteria for scoring written products are clear to the students and when the students see an obvious relationship between what they have written and the scores they have received.

The following is the example of rubric on assessing the students’ writing. It focus on the students’ ability in writing descriptive text.

Assessing Descriptive Text

The Rubric for Assessing Writing Descriptive Text

From the analytic scoring rubric for writing, each unit is scored from 1 to 4 and weighted based on its worth to the final draft of the descriptive text. The content is weighted 30% since it can be more worth that the other aspects. The organization and the grammar are weighted 20% respectively as they are more worth than vocabulary and mechanic. As there is a little anxiety around the last two aspects, vocabulary and mechanic, the small weighting is attached to them. They are weighted 15% respectively.


Djiwandono, S, M. 2008. Tes Bahasa; Pegangan Bagi Pengajaran Bahasa, Jakarta; PT. Indeks.

O’Malley, J.M & Pierce, L.V. 1996. Authentic Assessment for English Language Learners : Practical Approaches for Teachers. Massachusetts: Addison Wesley Publishing Company.

Brown, H. D. 2007. Teaching by Principles: An Interactive Approach to Language Pedagogy. (2nd ed.). New York: Longman


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