• Links to 6+1 Resources
    About 6 + 1 Trait Writing - Please read below
    6 + 1 Writing - Download Handout here
    In the early 1980's, creative teachers in school districts across the country decided there must be a better way to gather useful information about student writing performance than with single scores or standardized tests. They wanted an instrument that would provide accurate, reliable feedback to students and teachers that would help guide instruction. When an exhaustive search didn't produce such a tool, they rolled up their sleeves and began the difficult process of creating an analytic scoring system that would be valid, honest, and practical.

    After evaluating thousands of papers at all grade levels, the teachers identified common characteristics of good writing. These qualities became the framework for the six-trait analytical model. The model uses common language to identify the traits year to year as we refine our idea of what 'good' writing looks like by using the scoring guides.

    Not everyone uses the 6+1 Trait model : ideas, organization, voice, word choice, sentence fluency, conventions, and presentation. Some use four; some use more. These same six or seven characteristics show up on everyone's list in one form or another. The 6+1 Trait components are the foundation for the NWREL's writing assessment model and the basis for the descriptive criteria we use to define the qualities of good writing at different levels of achievement. Once teachers know the traits well and have good consistency between rates and amongst groups, the link to instruction becomes clear. This is where the real fun begins.

    The 6+1 Trait Writing model is now used in virtually every state in the country not to mention Great Britain, France, South America, China, Venezuela, Australia, Turkey, Bahrain, and other countries in the Middle East. It's the model or the source of the model used to score student papers in numerous state assessments and district assessments in virtually every state. Teachers from primary though college have embraced the 6+1 Trait model and not just English teachers, either. The traits are used by teachers of mathematics, science, social studies, foreign language, art, music; anyone for whom writing is an important part of instruction.