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How to Write a Critical Analysis Essay

20 Feb 2017Essay Writing Guides

What is a Critical Analysis Essay?

Imagine that you receive an assignment to write a critical analysis essay in a short period. Does it cause panic in you? If YES, you are on the way to the best solution to this issue. A critical analysis essay is a type of academic paper which demonstrates a student’s ability to analyze a piece of literature or cinematography. That is why college and high school lecturers assign this type of written task quite often. It may be confused with a report as a critical essay also deals with books, articles, movies, or even paintings. A good critical analysis provides the reader with a profound evaluation of the piece and reflects its positive and negative aspects. Want to learn how to write successful critical analysis essay quickly? Follow our special guide created with the help of several professional writers and lecturers of different scientific fields and be at the top!

how to write a critical analysis essay by PapersOwl Blog

Writing a critical analysis essay is a captivating process if you know the right structure and use the experience of the qualified experts who know all the intricacies of essay creation.

How to Start Writing a Critical Analysis Essay?

Beginning: Read first then write! If you have to evaluate a piece of writing such as a novel, a play, or a poem, you should first read it carefully. Arm yourself with stickers, a notebook, and a pen or pencil. Concentrate on the given topic of your essay and make notes of the essential parts of the book. Pay attention to the unfamiliar terms and concepts. Follow the assignment instructions as proper formatting and successful completion of the specific requirements will get you the highest grade.

Creation of the Title: Formulate a “working” title which is able to help you to focus your ideas. This will help your reader or another researcher have a clear vision of the essay's analysis. For instance, critical analysis in literature may deal with the following books:

  1. On Hamlet, written by William Shakespeare;
  2. On Frankenstein, written by Mary Shelley;
  3. On Scott Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby;
  4. On the Lord of the Rings, written by J. R. R. Tolkien.
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Steps to Writing an Excellent Critical Analysis Essay    

As your aim is to criticize the work done by another writer, your essay has to be well-structured, reasoned, and clear. You describe your attitude towards the text, but it is not necessary to only give negative points. Agree or disagree with the author by supporting your point of view with strong arguments and evidence on what the author did right or wrong. This type of essay has an Intro – Body Paragraphs – Conclusion format.

How to write a perfect essay? Follow the five steps described below.

  • Writing Critical reading

To create a good paper, it is not enough to simply read a book, you have to conduct a critical reading which has the following goals:

  • Identify the key ideas;
  • Determine the author’s main thesis;
  • Identify the appeals that were used;
  • Evaluate the author’s success in conveying his or her message.

These are the main goals you should keep in mind while reading. We also recommend conducting research on all unfamiliar materials such as terms, words, and concepts) for a better understanding of the topic.

  • Make an outline

With a good plan, you will easily handle this task. First, consider the format of your work. As a rule, essays of this type have a standard structure that consists of an introductory clause, a few body paragraphs, and a conclusion. Use this standard structure to make a detailed outline.

  • Write your paper

Writing such work, you should pay special attention to the introduction and the main body because they require the most attention and effort.

Introductory clause. Start your introduction with a hook to engage the readers, catch their attention, and make them want to continue reading your paper. Then define the author’s thesis and outline the key ideas. Finish your intro with your own thesis statement, gradually leading the readers into the discussion.

Body paragraphs. Make two or more body paragraphs, each presenting a single idea, and within your body paragraphs, answer the key questions stated in the introductory clause, supporting your ideas with examples, evidence, and quotes.

  • Proofread the text

Take a few days to rest from writing. Then, having refreshed your mind, read the essay a few times to identify whether there are some mistakes to fix or something is missing. Be attentive to the smallest details. Also, don’t hesitate to ask someone else to read your work.

  • Polish your paper

Once you have identified the flaws in your text, take a few hours to revise your work and make the necessary amendments until your text is perfect.

With these steps, you should create an A-worthy paper with ease. However, keep in mind a few additional tips to make your writing process effective and get the best results - start in advance and find a good piece of literature you can reflect on. Include smooth lead-ins and transitions to make your text flow as a single unit. Finally, be precise and clear, follow a logical sequence of presenting information, and don’t neglect proofreading, then you will succeed.

How to Conclude a Critical Analysis Essay?

CONCLUSION. Restate your point of view. The conclusion should match the intro but not repeat it! As you attempt to show the readers the particular points about the text, create a strong final argument on the basis of the previous explanations. Now you are ready to submit your excellent critical analysis essay!

Main Tips for the Whole Writing Process:

  • Make time for writing your critical analysis in order to be concentrated on the work;
  • Follow the required instructions and structure;
  • Make sure that you evaluate the authors work rationally.

How To Format A Critical Analysis Essay?

Your essay has to be clear, well-structured, and contain logical reasoning. The idea is to reflect your opinion on the specific text. You don’t have to focus merely on the negative points. You can agree or disagree with the writer but each claim or point you make has to be supported by strong evidence and arguments that prove your analysis of the author’s point.

How to format your essay? You can use this sample:

I) Background information

   A) Work (title, author, publication details, topic, and purpose)

   B) Your thesis statement that indicates your opinion about the piece

II) Clear description and summary of the analyzed work

III) Evaluation and/or interpretation of the work

   A) Work’s organization

   B) Author’s style

   C) The effectiveness of the work

   D) Discussion of how the author disclosed the topic and conveyed the main message

   E) Discussion of how the author appeals to the audience

Each student should know how to cope with critical analysis. A critical analysis essay is a popular assignment in all educational institutions and is an important part of the educational program. In the course of writing, students not only enhance their writing skills but also obtain many other skills including critical reading, critical thinking, and analyzing. Such assignments teach students how to evaluate something. All these skills will come in handy not only in college or school but will be important for your future career, which is why practicing critical analysis is great for students.

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