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Using textual evidence to strengthen your writing

How to introduce, integrate, analyze, and cite your quotes, facts, and other examples in your paper.
by

Writing Center

on 19 September 2012

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Transcript of Using textual evidence to strengthen your writing

Using Textual Support to Strengthen Your Writing How to introduce, integrate, cite, and analyze textual evidence in your paper. Strengthens your argument
Reinforces your opinions
Clarifies your statements Why is textual support important? A quote that supports your thesis
Can be:
something a character says or thinks
a description of a character, setting, or event
Avoid quotes that simply retell plot summary
Use quotes that are clear and concise What is good textual evidence? As many as are needed to support your point
Do not just use quotes for the sake of using a quote
Be sure to explain each quote that you use
Include analysis immediately after each quote
Good rule of thumb: 2-3 solid quotes per body paragraph
How many quotes are needed? 1. Introduce
2. Place
3. Cite
4. Analyze What are the steps for using textual evidence? 1. Introduce Now that you have introduced your quote, you need to place the actual quote in your paper.
Integrate quote into your writing so that it flows with the rest of your paper
Change verb tenses as needed with [square brackets] to ensure verb-tense agreement throughout paper
Use an ellipsis (...) if you need to shorten a quote or skip parts of the quote that are not relevant to the point you are making.
Use a "block quote" when quote is more than three lines (or 40 words).
Surround quote with "quotation marks"; use 'single quotation marks' to signify someone is speaking within your quote 2. Place You cannot just "drop" quotes into your paper
Need to introduce your quote:
provide a bit of background plot
who is the speaker?
who is the audience? 3. Cite Depending on format (MLA vs. APA), citations will differ slightly
Immediately after quote, include parenthesis with the required information about the cited text
See writer's help for further details and specific formats 4. Analyze Good rule of thumb: have at least 2 sentences analyzing your quote.
Do not merely restate the quote.
Explain how quote relates to and supports your argument
Go deeper than surface meaning
Why does it matter? Go to Writer's Help (writershelp.com)
Come see us in the Writing Center! We are happy to help you at any stage in your writing process! Need Additional Help?
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