Saturday, November 24, 2007

The Comparison Essay

One of the best ways we learn about new people and new things is by comparing and/or contrasting them to people and things we already know. By examining similarities and differences, we gain insights and are better able to see meaningful connections.

Your next writing assignment is to write a comparison essay. As always, the topic is up to you. But select a topic that can be explored in adequate depth and breadth for you to write a coherent, intelligent essay of at least 800 words. The ideas in your essay will be organized in a precise manner, either the block method or the flip-flop method. We will learn more about those patterns during this unit.

Your essay will be graded on the following:
  • A controlling idea in the introduction that states the two topics being written about and the direction of the essay
  • Ideas organized in either block or flip-flop method
  • The use of specific details to support each topic explored
  • The use of transition words to point out similarities or differences, or to repeat key phrases or structures
  • A conclusion that ends the paper with a sense of finality, summarizing the major points or commenting on the major ideas proven in the paper
  • The use of varied, powerful sentence structure
Resources: The following link provides comprehensive information about comparison/contrast essay assignments. It might be a helpful place to review before and during the writing process.

The rough draft of this essay will be due Tuesday, Dec. 4. The final draft will be due Thursday, Dec. 6.

Note: As with most of the assignments this year, this idea comes from the Stack the Deck writing program. Thank you.

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