11th Grade CAPT Assessment
The purpose of this interdisciplinary writing test is to determine how well you can write to persuade others to think as you do about an issue. In this test, you will read a few short articles about an important historical issue, take a position on the issue, and write a first draft of a persuasive letter. You must support your position with information from each of the source materials. Your response will be read and scored by trained readers.
About This Test
In this interdisciplinary writing test, you will think about and take a position on an important historical issue: which side, Loyalist or Patriot, would you choose to fight for during the American Revolution. While you are working on this test, you will use skills and knowledge you learned in classes and life experiences.
During the Revolutionary Period (1763-1783), American colonists were divided over the issue of whether to remain part of the British Empire or to fight for their independence. At the onset of the Revolution in 1775, Americans were split into two major groups: Loyalists, who supported King George III and wanted to remain part of Great Britain, and Patriots, who supported breaking away from Britain and forming an independent country. In addition, a significant number of Americans did not take a side and remained neutral. This was a difficult decision for American colonists since their choice of sides would directly impact the fate of their government and lives.
You will read a few short articles from the Loyalist and Patriot perspectives. Take a position on the issue and write a persuasive editorial for your local newspaper urging others to take your position. In your editorial, you must argue why one side, Loyalist or Patriot, is the best decision. Your letter should include information from each of the source materials. Below are the steps you will follow:
1 1. Read the source materials.
Before taking a position on the issue, it is important that you read all the source materials from the Loyalist and Patriot perspectives. As you read the source materials, you may underline information, highlight and write notes on the articles themselves.
1 2. Think and plan before you write.
Ask yourself these questions:
1 • To what degree have I thought my position through?
2 • What is the basis of my position?
4 3. Prepare to write your letter.
You have been given two organizers which you may find useful as you consider the various arguments for and against the Loyalist and Patriot causes. You may use the organizer that best suits your position. In addition, scratch paper has been included for any additional notes or outlining you may wish to do in preparing to write your letter. You are not required to complete these pages, and they will not be scored.
1 4. Write your letter in the answer booklet.
Write an editorial for your local newspaper supporting either the Loyalist or Patriot perspective. You must include information from each source. You may include information from your general knowledge background, if you believe it will strengthen your position. Write your response in your answer booklet. Only what is written in the answer booklet will be scored. Four pages have been provided for your response.
Your score will be based on the following criteria:
1 1. Position—Did you take a clear position on the issue? Did you address your audience?
0 2. Comprehensiveness—Did you use information from most of the four sources
1 that are provided?
3 3. Support—Did you support your position with accurate and relevant information from the source materials?
5 4. Organization—Did you organize your ideas in a logical and effective manner so that your audience will understand and follow your thinking?
7 5. Clarity and Fluency—Did you express your ideas clearly and fluently using your own words?
You may re-read or refer to the source