Critically examine essay

Category : Essay Writing Guide.

UPSC CSE Mains: Questions’ Terminologies (Analyse, Describe, Evaluate etc.) by Roman Saini

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Focus on directive essay words: “critically evaluate" or "critically review" | Oxbridge Essays

How to Critically Analyse your Essay rodrigo March 15, Subscribe If you enjoyed this article, subscribe to receive more just like it. Subscribe Enter your email address below to receive helpful student articles and tips. Error, group does not exist! Check your syntax! ID: 2.

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All rights reserved. Instead, you are voicing your opinion in a logical and coherent way that is based upon evidence and evaluation.

Introduction to essay writing at university

But you need to be able to build on that description to further justify your point. In descriptive writing you are going to need to focus on the following:. The purpose of these components is to let the reader get the essential information they need to understand the main idea. Yet if you stop here, you only end up with a descriptive essay, which does not meet the requirements of criticality that are requested by the professor or TA. Critical writing gives you the opportunity to go beyond the descriptive, so when you critically evaluate or critically review something, you are moving toward analysis and evaluation.

This type of critical writing asks you to assess the how, why, what if, so what and what next questions.


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Yet while there are many strategies, when writing in English, there are certain expectations that the reader has when working through a paragraph or larger piece of writing. Therefore, in order to satisfy the reader that you have successfully completed a critical review or evaluation, you need to make sure that the reader gets what they are expecting. Often, students feel like, just because something has been published in an academic journal, that it is an excellent piece of writing that cannot be questioned.

How to Write a Critical Essay

The author of that article made certain decisions during the research and writing processes. It is your job to evaluate and analyse what they have done and whether the author has presented any evidence that you can draw conclusions from or make links between areas of knowledge. In an academic journal article, there are often two places where you will be able to find the easiest opportunities to critically evaluate the work: the methodology and the discussion.

In the methodology, the author has made certain decisions about how they are going to answer the research question presented.


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They have usually in empirical research identified a sample, context, and certain instruments e. Perhaps one of the easiest ways you can critically evaluate this information is to determine whether or not the sample size is big enough or whether the context applies globally or only to the region where the research took place. For example, a sample of undergraduate students might seem like a lot, but if they are all from a remote area of Pakistan, their situation may not be applicable to undergraduate students who are studying in the UK.

Highlighting this issue is one of the more basic forms of criticality because you are applying your own judgements to a situation. Another area where you might be able to critically evaluate a paper is in the discussion section. In some articles, you might find that the author has made claims. So if we consider the same group of undergraduate students in Pakistan, the author might find that of the students felt that learning English was important for job security in the future. Therefore, the author might claim that students should learn English if they want to secure a good job in the future.

With this argument you could evaluate whether this statement is actually true. We already know that is not representative globally, but we can also assume that students in a remote area of Pakistan may not have access to the same opportunities as students in Beijing.

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How to Write a Critical Essay

These students may come to a different conclusion about English potentially. The point of a critical evaluation is to demonstrate that you can think beyond what you are being told. By taking steps to question what is being written and presented to you, you may be better able to write a critical review and to reflect on how and why the author took the position they did. No research study is perfect and it is your job to determine what could have been modified or changed to fit a different situation. In descriptive writing you are going to need to focus on the following: Who What Where When Who is the author?