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Hints for Writing a Summary-Response essay
Transcript of Hints for Writing a Summary-Response essay
10 Steps to Write a Summary-Response Essay
Read the whole article. Be sure you understand it. Look up any words that you don't understand, especially if they seem important.
Reread the essay and draw lines, with a pencil, between the different sections.
In the margin of the assigned reading, write the purpose or main point fo each section. Explain what the author is trying to do in each part.
Here is a list of the types of things the author is likely to do:
*acknowledge the opposing view *narrate
*anticipate an objection *argue
*introduce a point, example, etc... *question
*use an anecdote to... *explain
*support a claim by.... *describe
*cite or quote *defend
*assert his claim *state
As you begin the summary, mention the author and title of whatever you've read somewhere near the beginning, something like this: "A Modest Proposal," by Jonathan Swift, discusses....." Notice that essay titles are in quotation marks when they're mentioned in a paragraph.
In general summaries of articles are written in the present tense. When you tell what the author does in the article, that will be in the present tense. But if you mention something that actually happened in the past, the past tense is appropriate.
In a summary/response essay, the summary is usually only one paragraph and may serve as the introduction to the essay. The thesis will usually be found in the next paragraph. However, this will vary according to the assignment.
Each section you identified in step 2 needs to be mentioned in the order it occurred in the reading. Do not rearrange the order. Move from beginning to end.
Do not skip any section, including tables and illustrations. If you identify 5 sections, your summary will probably have 5 paragraphs. In addition, you will need to include some specific detail about each part, adding another sentence or two to each section discussion.
Do not include your opinion in a summary. Just explain what's in the essay. You can give your opinion later on in the response section.
You will need some transitions that make it clear to your reader that you are moving on to something new. Some examples are
*the author begins with...
*in the next few paragraphs...
*The author follows this with..
*the author concludes her essay by...