Critical review | English homework help

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  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7O7BMa9XGXE&feature=emb_title 

In order to create a strong argument, it is necessary to evaluate the effectiveness of other arguments. In doing this, we are not only thinking about what we found persuasive, but we are examining what makes the argument “work”: its structure, its flow, its tone, and the speaker/writer’s effectiveness in presenting their argument. For your second paper, you will be practicing these skills.

Your task is to select one of the materials that we have read or watched for class and write a paper evaluating the argument. This is your standard paper format, so you should structure it as you would a typical essay.

Compare this to a restaurant review: when you go to a restaurant, you make a judgement as to whether you had a nice experience. When a friend asks you for your opinion, you focus on various aspects of the restaurant: you might compliment the delicious food and fast service, and you may note that it was crowded and parking was difficult. This is balanced view of the restaurant, pointing out its pros and cons. You are doing the same thing with this assignment, but instead of a restaurant, you are “reviewing” an argument.

Some things to keep in mind:

  1. Your priority at the start of paragraphs is to state YOUR opinion (and then prove that with evidence)
  2. You prove your opinion by providing evidence from the article/talk that shows WHY you feel a certain way
  3. You cannot evaluate EVERYTHING in the article/talk
    1. Focus on just a few things to discuss in your paper
  4. Resist the temptation to call something “good” or “bad” because these are very subjective terms (one person’s “good” is another person’s “bad”).
    1. Focus on the specifics of what you feel is persuasive/not persuasive

Remember that you need proof when evaluating an argument. After every judgment you make, remember to include SPECIFICS from the argument itself. This is YOUR support!!

THESIS STATEMENT:

You should have a thesis statement that sets up an overall argument about the TED Talk/article you are evaluating. You might find this easier to write AFTER you have written your paper; you already know your goal is to evaluate the argument, but you might find that your overall feelings emerge as you look at and write about the individual parts. Your thesis should aim to give an overall feel for the strengths and weaknesses of the argument you are evaluating.

USING OUTSIDE SOURCES:

You must use at least THREE sources throughout your paper. The argument you are using counts as one as long as you are actively citing it. Consider using outside sources to bring in additional information and/or perspectives that the speaker/writer did not mention. For example, if you are evaluating Achor’s TED talk, you could bring in an outside article that argues about the effectiveness of using humor to persuade your audience. You could even compare Achor to Meg Jay or Cameron Russell, both of whom use humor sparingly, and, perhaps, not as effectively.

USING “I” AND PERSONAL EXPERIENCE:

You may use “I” in your paper, and you may include personal experience (especially if you are showing how certain areas of the argument either resonated with you or pushed you away), but do not rely solely on your own experience and keep in mind other viewpoints as well. For example, if you had a similar experience as Shawn Achor did with one of your siblings, that story might have been especially effective to you and it could have made him instantly likeable to you. However, after you discuss your own opinion, consider other audiences as well: would this story still be effective for those that don’t have siblings?

Formatting requirements:

  • At least 1200 words
  • Double-spaced
  • 12 point standard fonts (Times New Roman, Garamond, Arial, etc.)
  • Standard margins on all sides
  • MLA formatting for all source material
    • In-text citations
    • A works cited page

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