Skip Nav

Essay terms explained

Freshers homepage

❶Clarify a topic by giving a detailed account as to how and why it occurs, or what is meant by the use of this term in a particular context.

Critical essay writing

Chat forums


Ethos is an appeal to credibility. An author who explains why he or she should be trusted based on personal, professional, or academic merit is using ethos. Evaluate how well the author conveyed meaning. Determine how effective the author's appeals were from your own perspective as a reader. Ask yourself if you had an emotional response to an emotional appeal.

Did you become happy, upset, or angry at any point? If so, ask yourself why. Determine if the author's attempts at logic and reason were enough to change your mind. Also ask yourself if the material was clear, accurate, and cohesive. Ask yourself if you believe the author to be credible. Determine why or why not. Choose several noteworthy areas to analyze. For a critical review, you will usually focus on how effective an author's appeals at pathos, logos, or ethos were.

You can focus on one area if it appears stronger than the others, or you could look at two or three appeal types as they apply to a particular main idea used in the work. Alternatively, you can examine the author's overall ability at making his or her point. Your analysis can examine how well the author's research was performed, how cohesive the work is as a whole, how the author's use of structure and organization impacted the work, and other similar matters that stand out to you.

Divide each major point into a separate paragraph. No matter which areas you choose to write about, each major thought should be given its own paragraph. For more complex ideas, you may need to expand your discussion into several paragraphs.

Balance the positive and negative. If your critique includes more positive elements than negative, begin with the negative before defending the article with the positive. If your critique includes more negative opinions than positive, identify the positive elements first before defending your opposition with the negative.

If you have both negative and positive remarks to make about the same point or aspect, you can write a mixed paragraph that reflects this. To do so, you will usually end up stating the positive aspect first before explaining why the idea is limited. Identify any controversies surrounding the topic. If the author chose to write about a disputable matter, include information about the other side of the issue and explain how the author did or did not succeed in arguing against it.

This is especially significant when specific points or issues from the other side are mentioned directly in the article. Even if the author did not specifically mention opposing opinions, you can still mention common oppositions in your critical analysis.

Explain why the topic is relevant. Convince the reader of your essay that he or she should care. Let the reader know that the topic is relevant by contemporary standards. An article can be considered relevant if the subject has implications for the current day and age, but it can also be relevant if a notable writer or thinker is the author. Avoid turning the focus inward. Even though much of this is subjective, you should keep your tone academic instead of personal.

Avoid phrases like "I think" or "in my opinion. By identifying something as your own personal opinion, you actually end up weakening them in an academic sense. Do not focus on summary. You need to provide enough summary about the work for your critique to have sensible context, but the majority of the essay should still contain your thoughts rather than the author's thoughts.

Introduce the work being analyzed. Include both bibliographical information and more in-depth information. Specify the title of the work, the type of work it is, the author's name, and the field or genre the work addresses. Include information about the context in which the article was written. State your conclusion clearly and state the reasons for this conclusion, drawing on factors and evidence that informed your perspective.

Also try to justify your position in order to present a convincing argument to the reader. For example, you may be asked to review the literature on electoral reform in Great Britain. You'll need to give an overview of the literature. You then need to comment logically and analytically on this material. What do you agree or disagree with?

What have other scholars said about the subject? Are there any views that contrast with yours? What evidence are you using to support your assessment? Review answers should not be purely descriptive; they must demonstrate a high level of analytical skill. The aim is not simply to regurgitate the works of other scholars, but rather to critically analyse these works.

However, when assessing a particular argument or topic, it is important that your thoughts on its significance are made clear. This must be supported by evidence, and secondary sources in the literature are a great start. Essentially, you need to convince the reader about the strength of your argument, using research to back up your assessment of the topic is essential.

Highlight any limitations to your argument and remember to mention any counterarguments to your position. Give a detailed examination of the topic by including knowledge of the various perspectives put forward by other scholars in relation to it. What are your thoughts on the subject based on the general debates in the literature? Remember to clearly state your position based on all the evidence you present.

You should also try to provide some context on why the issues and facts that you have closely examined are important. Have these issues and facts been examined differently by other scholars? If so, make a note of this. How did they differ in their approach and what are the factors that account for these alternative approaches?

They focus instead on asking you to critically examine particular pieces of evidence or facts to inform your analysis. Such questions require that you display the extent of your knowledge on a given subject and that you also adopt an analytical style in stating your position. This means that you must consider both sides of the argument, by present contrasting pieces of evidence. But ultimately, you must show why a particular set of evidence, or piece of information, is more valid for supporting your answer.

It is important that you provide more than one meaning if there are several of them as it shows that you are very familiar with the literature. Make sure you assert your position with these types of questions. It's even more important that you support your arguments with valid evidence in order to establish a strong case. These characteristics should form the building blocks of your answer. In addition, always remember to back any claims with academic research.

In explanatory answers it is important that you demonstrate a clear understanding of a research topic or argument. This comes across most convincingly if you present a clear interpretation of the subject or argument to the reader. Coherence is extremely important in providing explanatory answers.

A somewhat detached, dispassionate tone can be particularly effective, in contrast to the more assertive, argumentative tone you might adopt for other types of essay question. Just remember that the key objective here is to give a nuanced account of a research topic or argument by examining its composite parts.

Such questions require you to shed light on a topic or, in some instances, break down a complex subject into simple parts. Coherence is very important for acing such questions, remembering to present your answer in a systematic manner. Furthermore, you may also want to emphasise any differences, although the focus of your essay should be on establishing similarities.

When you first get your essay question, always try to understand exactly what the question means and what it is asking you to do.

Look at the question word s and think about their meaning before you launch into planning what to write. Hopefully, our guide has shown you how to do this expertly. Remember to read the question several times and consider any underlying assumptions behind the question. Highlight the key words and if possible, make a very basic draft outline of your response. Similar to compare but concentrate on the dissimilarities between two or more phenomena, or what sets them apart.

Point out any differences which are particularly significant. Give your verdict as to what extent a statement or findings within a piece of research are true, or to what extent you agree with them. Provide evidence taken from a wide range of sources which both agree with and contradict an argument. Come to a final conclusion, basing your decision on what you judge to be the most important factors and justify how you have made your choice.

To give in precise terms the meaning of something. Bring to attention any problems posed with the definition and different interpretations that may exist. Essentially this is a written debate where you are using your skill at reasoning, backed up by carefully selected evidence to make a case for and against an argument, or point out the advantages and disadvantages of a given context.

Remember to arrive at a conclusion. Look in close detail and establish the key facts and important issues surrounding a topic. This should be a critical evaluation and you should try and offer reasons as to why the facts and issues you have identified are the most important, as well as explain the different ways they could be construed.

Clarify a topic by giving a detailed account as to how and why it occurs, or what is meant by the use of this term in a particular context. Your writing should have clarity so that complex procedures or sequences of events can be understood, defining key terms where appropriate, and be substantiated with relevant research.

Adopt a questioning approach and consider a variety of different viewpoints. Where possible reconcile opposing views by presenting a final line of argument. Means give a detailed description of something. Demonstrate your understanding of an issue or topic. This can be the use of particular terminology by an author, or what the findings from a piece of research suggest to you. In the latter instance, comment on any significant patterns and causal relationships.


Main Topics

Privacy Policy

29 rows · Looking at the essay question in close detail will help you to identify the topic and ‘directive words’ (Dhann, ), which instruct you how to answer the question. Understanding the meaning of these directive words .

Privacy FAQs

Mar 21,  · How to Write a Critical Analysis Four Parts: Conducting a Critical Reading Writing an Effective Analysis Organizing the Review Sample Analyses Community Q&A A critical analysis examines an article or other work to determine how effective the piece is at making an argument or point%(89).

About Our Ads

‘Assess’ questions place particular emphasis on weighing all. views concerning the essay subject, as opposed to your opinion only. However, when assessing a particular argument or topic, it is important that your thoughts on its significance are made clear. In an essay, and even in longer essays like 4, word essays, you'll usually only need to have a handful of key points. Remember the main objective is to support the main line of argument that you want to present to the reader. That doesn't mean that you have to cover absolutely everything that you've read.

Cookie Info

May 28,  · Remeber though; assess means weighing up as well! You should be giving strengths of the thoery and criticisms. Critically assess essay - Use from our inexpensive custom dissertation writing service and get the most from great quality forget about your fears, place your order here and receive your quality essay in a few days Fast and .