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Unformatted text preview: CRITIQUING PEER ESSAYS Critiquing your peer group member essays is work that is a necessary part of the process of learning to write well. It is equally important to revision, although in revision, your essay writing skills are developed as well. First Read the essay. Comprehend the writer's goals and ideas. Second Study the essay. Go from line to line and paragraph to paragraph looking for problems. LOOK FOR: PP 1 Does the author generalize? Does she talk about how "we" or "the people" or "people" in general do or don't do things? If so, this is inappropriate and needs revision. The first PP should focus on introducing the text that was read. Generalizations are not relevant. Is there a thesis? Does it have three parts context, subject and CLAIM? If not, consider the ideas the writer used in her essay and suggest how those might be used to write a thesis. Make these notes on her essay. Feel free to write on the blank side of the essay. Does the writer begin with a claim in the second PP? If not, study the PPs and suggest a claim that is related to the thesis. Does the writer use just a few sentences of quotations or paraphrasing (with citations) to say what the author wrote? Did the writer summarize throughout her essay? If so, mention this. Look at the summary and see what ideas she was addressing and suggest ways these ideas might be analyzed or discussed. Did the writer make an effort to analyze, discuss, or interpret the quotes or paraphrased text? If so, is the effort appropriate? No generalizations should be used. Textual analysis should focus on the text and nothing but the text. Does the writer use "I," "you," "we," or other pronouns. These are not to be used in a professional analytic essay. Suggest ways the writer can restructure sentences to eliminate these pronouns. Does the writer's essay body-text relate to the thesis? If not, mention this and suggest how it might be revised to relate to the thesis. Are the claims and arguments logical? Do they make sense? Look for grammatical problems, spelling errors, and sentence structure issues. Watch for omitted words and words that are used inaccurately. Study the handout I sent you concerning words and adverbs so that you know what sort of words to watch for. Is there a conclusion sentence for each area of analysis? If not, suggest one. Is there a conclusion paragraph at the end of the essay? If this paragraph includes anything but conclusion, point that out. Be honest. Do not let problems or errors slide because you make the same mistakes. You do not help your peer by doing so. In critiquing these essays, you will see ways to improve your own writing. Watch for sentences and ideas that impr3ess you as especially good and say so. Watch for ideas or writing that you can emulate (use) in your essay. ...
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- Spring '08