We want to hear from you!

BYU-Idaho values suggestions and ideas that can improve the university.
Use our Feedback Form to let us know what you think.

Brigham Young University Logo

Psychology Department Writing Rubric

Core Writing Rubric




(R) There are problems with the soundness of the arguments, ideas, and conclusions.

  • (Un) Unsupported: the conclusions do not follow from the arguments and ideas that have been presented.
  • (I) Illogical: the premises and conclusions don't match; there is no real argument or structure; it is random
  • (C) Clarify: a point needs to be developed or is unclear
  • (Th) Thesis: the thesis or topic of the paper is not stated or is unclear
  • (Pr) Premise: the premise of an argument is incorrect


(S) There are issues with how ideas are presented even though the ideas, arguments and conclusions may be reasonable.

  • (O) Organize: the structure makes it difficult to understand but reorganization would make it more clear
  • (N) Unnecessary: the point isn't important to this part of the paper or perhaps doesn't contribute to the overall organization of the paper
  • (Red) Redundant: the point has already been made and the paper is not improved by including it again. Perhaps limiting it to a different part of the paper would help.
  • (T) Transition: there isn't a transition between one point and another or the transition is unclear
  • (U) Unpack: the points are too condensed and the paper would benefit from elaboration on a point or points


(M) There are problems with the technicalities of writing such as grammar, word usage, punctuation, spelling, etc.

  • (G) Grammar: the grammar is incorrect
  • (Use) Usage: a word is used incorrectly
  • (Ref) Referent: the referent word is unclear
  • (P) Punctuation: incorrect punctuation
  • (Sp) Spelling: word is misspelled


(Sty) There are problems with the style of the paper.

  • (APA) APA style has not been used or has been used inappropriately
  • (Cit) Citation: a citation is missing or an incorrect citation format
  • (K) Awkward: the sentence is grammatically correct but doesn't read well; it could have been worded better
  • (Q) Quotation: too many quotes or there is plagiarism
  • (W) Wordy: the point could be made more succinctly
  • (WC) Word Choice: the word being used is technically correct but not stylistically correct
  • (Cas) Casual: too many colloquialisms or the tone is unprofessional
  • (E) Unengaging: the writing style makes the paper dry and uninteresting