Rough Draft Workshop
While workshopping your peers’ papers please leave digital comments in the margins on the following, and then answer the following after you’ve finished reading and commenting:
1. Has the writer chosen an interesting, original, and relevant title? If not, offer an alternate title.
2. Does the writer write an effective, attention-grabbing introduction that provides necessary background information regarding the issue? Is the topic time relevant and current?
3. Does the writer have a specific and explicit thesis statement that states WHAT the writer’s position is and WHY it matters to the audience?
4. Does the writer unify his or her essay by beginning every body paragraph with a topic sentence? If not, state which paragraph lacks a topic sentence. Do the paragraphs expand on the topic sentences without being redundant or circular?
5. Are images referenced and used correctly? Where might an image effectively add to the essay?
6. Does the writer include a works cited page at the end of the research paper? Does the writer adhere to the guidelines of an MLA works cited page (check sample in handbook or online)?
Format, Grammar, and Mechanics:
7. Has the writer formatted his or her essay correctly: Times New Roman, 12-point font; double-spacing, one-inch margins, MLA-style heading?
8. Are citations, titles, and capitalization utilized and formatted appropriately?
9. Are there any weak phrases (I think, I believe, what I have discussed, this essay will discuss, etc)?
10. Has it avoided the use of weak and vague terminology (you, we, our, they, their, us, things [any word related to things], etc)?
11. Point out any grammatical errors. Pay attention for fragments, commas splices, run-on sentences, vague pronouns, and misplaced or dangling modifiers.
Please discuss anything you find appropriate and be sure to provide suggestions on how to strengthen any constructive criticisms you might have.
After you have finished reading your partners’ papers, please write one to two pages critiquing the essay draft with a focus on the following:
1. What caught your attention and why?
2. What parts made you want to research more?
3. How did the paper logically establish its claim or how did it utilize sources to effectively prove its point?
4. What else did you like about it and why?
5. Has the writer written a unique research paper, or has he or she merely written an informative report? Has he or she taken a clear stance on the issue?
6. Has the writer typed a suitable amount for this draft? Is he or she on track for the final draft? If not, how can the writer add length without adding fluff?
7. If the writer exceeded the page length, how can the writer cut parts without losing detail or impact?
8. Does the writer fairly provide the perspective of a critic?
9. Is the voice of the essay (diction, tone, tense, etc) suitable for the audience of this research paper?
10. Does the writer develop every body paragraph with sufficient supporting evidence, such as facts, statistics, examples, and expert opinions, from sources? If not, indicate which paragraph needs more support.
11. Does the writer include only evidence that is relevant, accurate, and representative? What specific parts were not?
12. Does the writer avoid faulty logic and reasoning? If not, indicate where. Remember the fallacies we discussed in class. Ask yourself if the argument or proposal makes logical sense to you and indicate whether or not it presents any problems.
13. Does the writer use “quote sandwiches” as we discussed in class (introduce source, state the quote or paraphrase, relate the information to the essay)?
14. Does the author use 8-10 scholarly sources and 2-4 secondary sources?
15. Where might the essay benefit from another source?
16. Does the author rely too much on sources and not enough on his or her own ideas? If so, where?
17. Are the sources suitable for a professional academic research paper?
18. In your estimation, does the writer quote, paraphrase, and summarize correctly and accurately? Does the writer include too many long quotations?
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