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This outline follows the structure implied in the prompt, but it also provides lots more detailed information about how to respond and detail each part of the prompt.If you’re having difficulty organizing your thoughts, this will be very helpful.You can also use it as a checklist to make sure that you have responded to everything the prompt is asking for.It will also give you info about what to do for a C or a higher grade paper.


This part will usually take one or two smaller paragraphs (but no more for a short essay).Try using an epigram (a quote after your title but before your first body paragraph), but be sure it relates to the author’s topic.

The points of your introduction should include the following:

1. Present the general topic, including general information about the problems associated with this issue. This will take more than a sentence or two.

2. Establish context by presenting the author, article “Title,” publication Title and full date.

3. Identify the author’s thesis (use the quote).

4. State your thesis.This is also called signaling your project or focus.The following is

an example of a thesis that addresses the prompt.You can use this in your essay.An analysis of (the author)’s article will identify and detail the author’s project, one supportingclaim and evidence, and a counter-argument in order to evaluate the effectiveness of this article.

II:Body Paragraphs/Middle

All body paragraphs should include a topic sentence.Assume your audience is an unfamiliar reader; briefly explain what the author is doing, but emphasize analysis.Be sure to identify, detail and analyze the following parts.

  • In your first body paragraph, you will first need a topic sentence to list all parts of the author’s project: purpose, goal, stylistic choices, overall activity, and (for a grade higher than a C) general strategy.Then identify the author’s purpose (clearly state “The author’s purpose is________.”), and the authors’ goal (“His goal is________.”).Since goal refers to what the author wants the audience to do, you have a perfect opportunity to transition into identifying the publication’s audience; this will require a little research.Be sure to include the reference to the article “Title” and/or the website Title for where you got this info.Since a Works Cited page is not required, you will NOT use parenthetical citations. Be sure to refer to the key terms.

Then, in a separate paragraph, you will need a topic sentence to identify one of the author’s stylistic choices.For example you could focus on his use of tone.Be sure to give examples from the article of both formal and informal tone. Explain why you think he uses both.What effect does this have on readers like you?

NOTE: For a grade higher than a C, detail his use of diction (specific word choice) as another example of a stylistic choice.Identify three places where Carey uses specific language (diction) to evoke an emotional response from his readers.Gives examples of the language he uses in these 3 places.What kind of emotion do each of these examples evoke?Why does he do this? Again, be sure to use the key terms.

Then, in a separate paragraph, in a topic sentence identify his overall activity.For example, you could focus on Carey’s use of definition.Where does this occur in his article?Why does he place it where he does?What affect does it have on the reader and the way we read the rest of his article? Again, be sure to use the key terms.

For a grade higher than a C, you’ll need to identify a general strategy.For this you could focus on his use of Occupy Wall Street as a framing device to open and close his article.Be sure to explain how these references help to open and close his article.Why does he use this specific reference?How does it help to frame his article? What is the effect of this reference on his readers?How do you respond to this?Again, be sure to use the key terms.

B.Here’s where you will focus on one supporting claim and evidence the author uses to support that one claim. Do not include references to the author’s refutation or concession here; these are separate from the supporting claims.

In one paragraph, clearly identify what you think is the more important supporting claim (use the quote).State where it occurs in the text.Do not refer to paragraphs; instead identify if the reference is close to the beginning, in the middle or near the end of the article.What is the main point Cary is trying to make in this part of the article?How does it help to extend his thesis?

DO not give any detailed analysis here.Instead consider why he uses this claim at this point in the article.

In a separate paragraph, identify one example of evidence used to support this specific claim (use the quote). Briefly detail HOW this one example of evidence proves, supports or illustrates the claim. Then analyze that one example of evidence.Why do you think the author uses this reference?HOW does it prove or illustrate this specific claim?What kind of appeal is it?For example, if it is pathos or logos, then identify what kind of pathos or logos is evoked in the reader.Remember, analysis focuses on specifics.Broad general statements will not work as analysis. For example, if it evokes an emotion in the reader, then identify what kind of emotion?How does it evoke that emotion, or that specific kind of logos?Then evaluate the effectiveness of that one example of evidence.What kind of effect does the evidence have on the audience at the time the article was written?What’s the effect on you?

NOTE: For a C range paper, analyzing only one example of evidence is fine. However, for a B range paper, analyze a second example of evidence for this one claim.For an A range paper a third example of evidence. (Detail each example in a separate paragraph.)This means choosing a claim that has two or more examples of evidence.Do NOT detail another claim.

C.Identify and detail one counter-argument (do NOT choose the concession).Where in the article does the author address the opposition?Use the quote to clarify the opposing side’s claim.Then clearly identify HOW the author refutes this claim (also use the quote here too).Then detail the evidence the author uses to support his refutation.Then evaluate this evidence.What is the effect on the reader and on you?WHY is it effective or not effective?

NOTE:For a grade higher than a C, you will also need to also detail the concession.Where in the article does the author address the opposing claim?Use the quote to clarify this claim.Then clearly identify HOW the author responds to this claim (you may also use a quote here too).Remember, he can NOT refute a claim that’s true or is a fact.He can only respond and then refocus his reader’s attention. Be sure to detail on WHAT he refocuses the reader’s attention. Then evaluate the effectiveness of this attempt.


Since you should have used an epigram before your introduction, use it as a framing device to signal your conclusion by referencing it.This will also bring the essay full circle, back to the beginning.Do not restate the quote; rather refer to it or the author in general.Also, do not restate verbatim your thesis or summarize the points of your essay; this is redundant and should be avoided.It’s okay to have a short conclusion for a short essay.Do try to wrap it up and end with a bang.


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