An evaluation essay is a written work that examines and critiques something. This could be a movie, a literary work, a meal, a television show, a sporting event...essentially anything that you could have an opinion about can be the topic of an evaluation essay. In an evaluation essay, you discuss whether or not the subject of your essay was carried out successfully or not, and you give details as to why or why not that is your opinion. To be successful at writing an evaluation essay, you must be both opinionated and fair. It can be difficult to find the balance between those two things. Don't worry, writing evaluation essays is probably not as difficult as you think. Just follow these 5 steps to learn how to write an evaluation essay.
1. Acknowledge Your Biases
In order to write a great evaluation essay, you have to be as fair as you possibly can in your analysis. In order to do this, you have to acknowledge and get over any biases that you may have before you write your essay. Biases can impact your ability to write a fair evaluation. Remember that biases aren't only negative, preconceived notions, they can also be positive, preconceived notions. Here are some examples of biases you may confront:
Writing an evaluation of a long poem when you hate poetry
Writing a review of a book written by your favorite author
Reviewing a meal in a restaurant owned by a friend
Having a bias does not mean that you cannot review a restaurant. Acknowledging your bias is an important step in making sure you deliver a fair evaluation.
2. Consume With an Open Yet Analytical Mind
Whether you are reading a book, watching a movie, or viewing an exhibit in an art museum, it is important that you keep an open mind, and that you view the subject of your essay from an analytical point of view. As you consume, e.g., read, watch, view, listen, eat, ask youself questions about what the creators of your subject intended, what they want you to get from the experience, and whether or not they were successful.
3. Start Writing as Soon as Possible
As soon as you are able to start writing about your experience. The sooner you get your thoughts and opinions down on paper the better your essay will be. At this point, do not worry about sentences and paragraphs, you just want to capture your immediate reaction.
4. Take a Step Back
After you have written your initial thoughts and feelings take a step back. Then, write down your thoughts and feelings again. Once this is done, compare your first writing effort to your second. Chances are, your most insightful evaluation will be a combination of the two.
5. Write Your Essay
You are now ready to write your evaluation essay. First, create your thesis statement. This is the sentence that provides your readers with your overall opinion of the subject you are evaluating. Then, use your notes to find supporting points that back up your thesis. From there, continue writing your introduction, body paragraphs, and conclusion.
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