simply write “ grammar ” next W r i t i n g
Framing: Does the composition open with a compelling anecdote or description of a current problem, one that points to or suggests historical underpinnings? Can this anecdote or description be improved? How?
Context: Is there a convincing and clear synthesis of various scholarly perspectives that examine the relevant and underlying cause or causes of the problem? Can the source synthesis be improved upon? How?
Key Players: Does the essay show who, specifically suffers as a result of the existence of this problem, how they suffer, who or what caused the suffering and who benefits from it? Explain. Can you think of anything else that might improve this feature of the composition?
Obstacles/Opposition: Can you find effective, believable, and thoughtful engagement with who or what stands to gain/continues to gain, whether economically, socially or politically, from the existence of this problem? Is there any meaningful account of the weaknesses in the expert arguments that the essay presents? How might you improve this feature of the composition?
Using Sources: Does the author give clear context/summary/introduction of scholarly source material? Is the quoted material relevant and insightful? Is the material that makes a claim or draws a conclusion properly contextualized? Does the author effectively evaluate the source material by showing his or her own position on the topic/problem within that ‘conversation’? How might you improve these features of the composition?
Does the composition follow a line of development that moves from the descriptive to the analytical? Do sentences within a paragraph follow logically one to the next? Is a paragraph’s content organized around a clear and focused topic sentence? Do paragraphs transition logically from one to the next? How might you organize the essay so that its paragraphs are better placed in the essay? So that dense paragraphs might be clearer if they were broken up into two or even three paragraphs? So that paragraphs with a flimsy analysis might be more developed if two paragraphs were put together? So that paragraphs are better anchored to a more direct, focused topic sentence?
How does this essay conclude? Does it end with new insights, point to advocacy, or is it merely a repetition of what you have already encountered? How can you improve the essay’s conclusion?
Does the essay effectively make use of epigraphs, footnotes, pull quotes, images, photography, original documents, art, maps, graphs, and/or video? Are these carefully selected, arranged and various? Is the image too melodramatic or ‘obvious’ in its message? Too vague? Does the image advance the power or force of the argument? How?
Does each multi-modal element have a caption in MLA formatting explaining what it is?
Are the sources MLA formatted both in-text and in your bibliography? (please consult OWL for MLA formatting instructions…or ask!)
How is the grammar? If you can’t understand a sentence due to grammar errors, don’t fix it; simply write “grammar” next to the sentence.