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The Writing Requirement Package | The Reading Requirement Package

> Introduction

What to assess | How to assess | Criteria for assessment

IV. Assessment of writing

What to assess

When formulating writing assessment tasks, CAR teachers may take the following aspects into account:

  • whether students are able to achieve the intended goals of the set assignments by including and selecting relevant content and ideas;
  • whether students are able to adopt the text structures and genres that are suitable for attaining the purposes intended for the assessment tasks;
  • whether students are able to determine the central claims or purposes of the text;
  • whether students are able to form logical and sensible arguments surrounding the thesis identified with a range of viewpoints as supporting details;
  • whether students are able to achieve cohesion and coherence, with the help of cohesive devices whenever necessary, in their written responses;
  • whether students are able to use appropriate and accurate grammatical structures and precise vocabulary to support sophisticated and effective communication;
  • whether students are able to maintain an appropriate register and level of formality in conjunction with the genres of the assignments concerned;
  • whether students are able to demonstrate an awareness of audience;
  • whether students are able to cite relevant sources, integrate sources into their texts, and acknowledge the sources used in adherence to proper academic conventions; and,
  • whether students are able to make improvement in the writing process through revising their drafts in response to both teacher feedback, peer feedback and their own insights.


How to assess
Some suggestions for assessment are listed as follows:

    Private writing

    1. Critical responses to stimulus questions (with stimulus questions either from CAR teachers or students themselves)
    2. Chapter summaries
    3. Reflective journal entries
    4. Spontaneous journal entries
    5. Book reports
      • Descriptive
      • Evaluative
      • Reflective
    1. Critiques / Reviews

    Public writing

    1. Online posts / Blogs
    2. Letters to editor
    3. Essays
    4. Reports
    5. Writing portfolios


Criteria for assessment

Besides the specific criteria that the CAR subject teachers will have for a particular type of writing that they require students to undertake, writing assessments should be able to assess students' ability in the following areas:

  • Content
    • Relevance
    • Comprehensiveness
  • Argumentation and organization
    • Argumentation
      • Logical / critical presentation of opinions, analyses
    • Cohesion and coherence
  • Language
    • Grammar and accuracy
    • Vocabulary
    • Tone, register and style appropriate for the genre
  • Referencing and use of sources
    • Quality
    • Quantity
    • Integration
  • Development and editing
Students' effort in improving their drafts in response to teacher and peer feedback and comments


> Writing
> Engaging students in writing
> Assessment
> Templates for writing activities

About this website

EWRite is an open access online literacy platform for PolyU community that has two major objectives:

  • to support PolyU students’ literacy development within and across the disciplines
  • to support subject and language teachers to implement system-level measures for integrating literacy-sensitive pedagogies across the university

This platform provides access to generic genre guides representing typical university assignments as well as links to subjects offered by faculties with specific disciplinary genres and relevant support materials.

The materials can be retrieved by students by choosing the genres that interest them on the landing page. Each set of materials includes a genre guide, genre video, and a genre checklist. The genre guide and video are to summarize the genres in two different ways (i.e. textual and dynamic) to fit different learning styles. The genre checklist is for students to self-regulate their writing process. The genre guide and checklist include links to various ELC resources that can provide further explanation to language items (e.g. hedging and academic vocabulary).

The platform also acts as a one-stop-shop for writing resources for students, language teachers and subject leaders. Information about the English Writing Requirement policy can also be found on this platform. There are training materials for new colleagues joining the EWR Liaison Team.