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Essay Practice

DIRECTIONS: The essay portion of this test has a 50-minute time limit. In that time you are to
plan, write, and proofread an essay on one of the topics listed below. Please read the topics
carefully so that you fully understand what you are asked to do.

Topics: 1. A character from fiction or the movies who has a positive impact on
2. A natural event which occurs periodically and which has beneficial

Reread the topics and select one on which to write your essay. The essay must be on only one of
the two topics, and it must address the topic entirely.

In your essay, be sure to introduce the subject, and then do one of the following:
• Explain the topic you choose
• Assume a position about the topic and support it

Your essay will be judged based on the specific criteria and whether you have observed the
• Determined the purpose of writing
• Formulated a thesis or statement of main idea
• Organized ideas and details effectively
• Provided adequate, relevant support material
• Used effective transitions
• Demonstrated a mature command of language
• Avoided inappropriate use of slang, jargon, and clichés
• Maintained consistent point of view
• Observed the conventions of standard American English

Take some time to think about what you have to say and how you want to say it before beginning
to write. Allow yourself some time toward the end of the section to look over your work and
make the necessary corrections.

Handwriting does not affect your score, but it is in your best interest to write legibly so that the
evaluators can read and understand your essay more easily.