Below is a sample response to our TASC Informational Practice Essay. Review this response for an example of a high-scoring essay. This TASC sample essay follows the template that’s in our TASC Informational Essay Writing Guide. Below the example is a short commentary which explains why this is an effective essay and why it would receive a high score.
Student loan debt is an important concern to society today. One side believes that student loan debt is absolutely worth taking on. They describe the loans as a “necessity.” The other side believes that student loan debt is not entirely necessary to take on, and has stated that when it comes to the math of student loans, it “just doesn’t add up.” However, in order for today’s aspiring college students to have a successful college career, there is only one correct plan of action. The best plan to resolve this issue and provide balance is for students to only accept large loans when they know that they will be able to pay them back; because different jobs pay different salaries, loans can prevent career success later on, and mismanaging student loans can ruin credit.
The first step in our plan to only accept a loan if a student knows he or she can pay it back should be to analyze the potential salary earnings of that student. This is beneficial since various college majors have different starting salaries. One piece of evidence from the passage that supports this is the first author’s discussion of Ivy League schools- “Some schools… carry a high price tag, but also provide their graduates with high job placement rates, high earning potential, and a network of people to help them through their career.” If a student plans to attend Harvard Law School, for example, then taking on six-figures of debt may make sense. However, if a student is pursuing a field that does not have many high-paying jobs, then it may not make sense to accept a large loan. Students should consider what the average salary is for their major first.
Next, after considering earning-potential, a student should determine whether having the loan debt after school might negatively impact career success. In the first passage, Walker explains that debt should “be no more than 10 percent of a recent graduate’s gross monthly income” and should be offered under “transparent terms.” A student should take the salary number found in step one, and apply it to step two; 10% of that expected salary should be the maximum amount of a monthly loan payment after graduation. If the loan payment is not fixed, or it is more than 10%, then the student should reconsider taking the loan.
The third step a student should take in order to determine whether to accept a large student loan is to recognize its impact on their credit score. As the first passage indicates, a good credit score is “a shining track record should you apply for bigger expenditures, such as a car or a house.” If you don’t have a credit card that you are using and paying off each month, then taking on a student loan (assuming you can make the monthly payments found in step two), might be a responsible way of building up your credit rating. However, there is no point in taking on a loan ONLY to build up credit, so do not use this as your first consideration. There are other ways to pay for college, such as getting an off-campus job that might just “jump start on building your resume.”
In conclusion, by taking this three-step approach of evaluating your future salary potential, considering whether you can afford the monthly payment of your loan, and weighing whether building credit through loan debt is important to you, this plan will create a balanced perspective for the student. This plan will have appeal to people on both the pro-student loan and anti-student loan sides, and though each side may not ultimately be completely satisfied by a student’s decision, this plan is the best course of action because it will achieve the goal of allowing the individual to make an informed and appropriate decision about his or her financial future, only accepting a loan they know they can pay back.
The TASC Test Essay Scoring Rubric has a score range from 0–4. The essay score is then doubled to become part of the official Writing Test score. This essay would receive a score of 4, and a total of 8. It is a well written example of an Informational TASC essay.
The essay appropriately outlines the issues surrounding student loans, explaining the beliefs of each side. The author provides a clear focus, recommending that “students … only accept large loans when they know they will be able to pay them back.” This provides balance since the outcome could fall on either side of the issue. If a student can pay back the loan, then the loan is a good idea. If a student cannot pay back the loan, then the loan is a bad idea.
The passage is well-organized into 5 paragraphs, starting with an introduction, three supporting paragraphs with details from each passage, and a concluding paragraph. The passage is developed with three specific ideas: (1) salary earning potential, (2) monthly debt payment, and (3) credit. For each body paragraph, the author uses specific quotations from the passage that are relevant to each idea. The passage is balanced because it includes details from both passages and the author does not favor one side over the other.
Transition words and phrases are included that add cohesion to the essay as a whole (“The first step…”, “Next…”, “The third step…”, and “In conclusion…”). Topic sentences are clearly articulated. Furthermore, the language contains no grammatical or spelling errors and is free of cliché remarks. The author includes varied sentence structure and diction. Finally, the conclusion brings the topic to a close and reiterates how the author’s plan will lead to a student making an informed decision on the topic.
You should now be fully prepared for the TASC Informational Essay. To prepare for the Argumentative Essay go to TASC Essay Question. For the rest of our practice questions go to TASC Practice Test.
- Эксклюзивные права у вас. Это я гарантирую. Как только найдется недостающая копия ключа, «Цифровая крепость» - ваша. - Но с ключа могут снять копию. - Каждый, кто к нему прикоснется, будет уничтожен.