National History Project

NHD Position Paper—Mastery Rubric
DUE: May 16, 2012


Have you presented a logical well-supported analysis of the problem, the background, position, benefits, and three arguments? Do your ideas move the reader to act?


Are your thoughts organized in clear power paragraph format? Does every paragraph have a specific focus and purpose. Do transitional words and phrases guide the reader within and between paragraphs? Does each section incrementally advance the writer’s thesis? Do these sections work together to present a logical position paper?


Does the writer uses rhetorical devices and clear sentence structure to captivate the audience? Is the writing in final-draft, polished form--free of mechanics, usage, and grammar errors? Does the writer’s academic, engaging voice keep the reader interested?


Is the paper formatted in Times or Helvetica 12-point font, double-spaced, with 1-inch margins all around? Does the writer use correct MLA format for page numbers, first page heading, internal citations and ANNOTATED BIBLIOGRAPHY



(2 points)
(1 point)
(0 points)
Source Type
The resource type is accurately determined.
A source is mentioned, but not accurately determined.
The type of resource is not addressed.
Primary or Secondary
Identification of source as primary or secondary is accurate.
Source is identified as primary or secondary, but identification is inaccurate.
Identification of source as primary or secondary is not noted.
Annotation provides significant background information about author’s/creator’s authority in the field of this research topic.
Annotation somewhat addresses the author’s/creator’s authority (“professor,” “PhD,” etc.).
Annotation does not address the author’s/creator’s authority in the field of this research topic.
Annotation clearly summarizes the main idea and accurately identifies the scope of the source.
Annotation contains a general/vague statement instead of identifying the central idea/purpose of the entire source.
Annotation does not include a summary of the source.
Annotation contains a clear rationale for both choosing and using the source.
Annotation contains rationale for choosing, but not how the source is being used.
Annotation contains no rationale for choosing and using the source.

Sample Citation

Osterholm, Michael T. “Preparing for the Next Pandemic.” Foreign Affairs 84.4
(July/August. 2005): 24—37. Academic Search Premier. EBSCO. Upper
Arlington High School Lib. 26 Oct. 2005 <http://search.epnet.com/

This journal article is a secondary source written by Michael T. Osterholm, Professor at the University of Minnesota’s School of Public Health and Director of the Center for Infection Disease Research and Policy. In this article, Osterholm addresses the world’s preparedness and readiness in the event of a widespread influenza outbreak. This source is being used for our project because it details what must be done, according to Osterholm, should an influenza outbreak occur this year, next year, and in ten years.