Writing an Evaluation Essay

Welcome to Writing an Evaluation Essay: The Do's and Don'ts.

As with most of the assignments in this class, I want you to embrace the process because there's a specific process that we're going to go through,

so for this assignment, you're going to be starting with an outline,

which is going to move in then to the essay and follow that up after the essay's written with a reflection.

Please embrace this process. It will help you become a better writer.

So let's get on to the nuts and bolts.

An evaluation essay is simply making a value judgment

and writing about it. Now, we're can be pretty specific in this assignment. You may only choose to make a positive or a negative value judgment,

no comparison. You're only looking at one thing.

In order to make that positive or negative value judgment, you're going to need some set criteria for evaluation.

Once you have decided whether you're going to go positive or negative and set your criteria, then you can move on to the next step.

In your text, it has some great suggested words on page 485.

For positive,


Negative, inferior.

Positive, useful.

Negative, useless. Positive, efficient. Negative inefficient.

Positive, effective. Negative, ineffective.

Positive, successful followed by negative, unsuccessful.

Positive, deserving. Negative, undeserving. Positive,

important. Negative, trivial.

Positive, original. Negative, trite.

Positive, innovative.

Negative, predictable.

Positive, interesting,

Negative, dull.

Positive, inspiring and negative, depressing.

You can find these all in your textbook, so you don't have to write them down and take notes,

but it's really important to think beyond the idea of good or bad.

These are some very excellent words to choose.

So let's talk a little bit about the structure of the essay,

and you can find the structure in your textbook on page 487, but for now let's take a look at it quickly.

You're going to have an introduction that has your thesis statement in it. I prefer that your thesis statement

fall as the last sentence of your introduction. It makes it a lot

clearer to the reader.

Body paragraph number one is the evidence for your first criterion.

Body paragraph number two is evidence for your second criterion.

Body paragraph number three is evidence for your third criterion.

Then, you're going to get to the refutation of the opposing views in body paragraph four.

Please note that in order to refute any opposing views, you also have to bring in those opposing views and then explain why

those views aren't more important than your own criterion.

And then, of course, you're going to have the conclusion that includes the concluding statement.

So let's take a look at what that looks like in real life.

Here is the sample outline from your assignment.

Although Supernatural does not have the highest viewership on television, its legions of rabid fans

get a solid ten out of ten. So clearly this is going to be a positive judgment.

Let's take a look at the first body paragraph topic sentence to see what the criterion is.

One reason that Supernatural is so highly rated by fans is the quality of the scripts.

In addition to the scripts, Supernatural also ranks high with fans because of its use of myth and urban legends.

Though the scripts and use of mythology are important,

it is Supernatural's central characters that cause fans to continually rate it a ten.

While Supernatural scores high ratings among fans, non-fans argue that it fails in many ways.

This is the paragraph where I would talk about the negative things, but then turn around and refute them and bring it on back to that positive.

And finally. Since Supernatural has just been renewed for an unprecedented eleventh season

with no signs of slowing down,

fans can feel justified with their ratings of two thumbs up.

So that's what your outline should look like.

Here are some things to remember as you write.

It's not a comparison.

Please don't say that something is better or worse than something else. I want you to only look at the intrinsic value

of that single thing.

So we know that this is your value judgment,

but please do not use first or second point of view.

No I's, me's, my's. No you's or your's. Third person only.

Be specific. If you're talking about

a restaurant and you're saying that the food is good, that is not specific. If you're saying that the minced

onions in the guacamole coupled with the diced garlic

meld into something that is quite delicious, we get a lot more information from that than the dip's good.

Please use smooth transitions both

in between paragraphs and within paragraphs. Remember when you set your criterion, you're going to be giving more than one little piece of

evidence. So if you do all these things and plan, you can just take a stretch and relax.

But remember,

as always, ask questions. I am only an email away: lrosen@coastline.edu.

I'm very responsive. I'm here to help you.

Please don't be afraid to email me if you're unsure about anything.

So. . .

that's it

Write well

and evaluate something.