The Star Malaysia - Star2
Writing great essays
When you have 3,000 words to write an evaluation of a system, idea or theory and have no idea where to start, follow these steps.
1) Write down the title. Start a separate sheet for References and Bibliography.
2) If you have been given a rubric, use the sections as section headings. Cut and paste the top part of the rubric into each so you know what is needed.
If you have not been given a rubric, then you need to find out what the standard format is for your type of work.
For a critical evaluation, a basic structure would be:
> The Introduction, where you explain briefly what the title or question means. Think of this as your teaser.
> Definition of key terms, just so that you and your reader are on the same page.
> Description of the system, idea or theory so that your teacher knows you are an expert on the subject.
> Case For with points supporting it, followed by Case Against.
> Conclusion, where you add your thoughts and make your case for your own opinion.
3) Read up on the issue by picking up a textbook that is fairly new so that you have the latest facts. Make notes and use this for your Description.
4) Browse through your library for papers that support and criticise. The more perspectives you have, the better. Make notes for your Case For and Case Against.
5) Think about it: How does it strike you? Are you for, against or do you think it needs more work? Your take on the matter is what will make the assignment sing, so put your best thoughts into your conclusion.
6) Go over your essay and make sure that your facts are supported by your references. Restate or paraphrase so that it’s in your voice and not someone else’s. Sort your references in alphabetical order. Review again and hand it in.