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This a CRITICAL ANALYSIS paper requires a brief summary of the claim/theory being analyzed, but the bulk of the paper should consist of your analysis of the arguments presented by proponents of this pseudoscience, finally ending with your general assessment. It should require ASSUMPTION, assessing its REASONS and EVIDENCE and weighing its CONCLUSIONS. The assessment should states whether or not there is adequate and scientific support for the ARGUMENTS AND CLAIMS to the logical presentation of convincing REASONS backed up by appropriate EVIDENCE.

Your paper will naturally take the form of an argumentative essay as you will argue whether or not the claim advanced by the author is worthy of belief. Clearly identify the topic, the author’s main claim (the conclusion of their argument; that which they are trying to convince us of) in your introduction, as well as quick summary of the argument advanced in the text and your brief assessment of the argument. The introduction should
consist of at least 250 words. The body paragraphs you will present your detailed analysis of the argument. The body should be where your analysis is presented. This is where you will apply the various concepts used throughout the course. The body should be at least 600 words; you will likely need to allocate more than that if you want to do a
thorough analysis. The conclusion (approx 150 words) summarizes your evaluation of the author’s argument. Minimum 1000 words.

3 RELIABLE SOURCES, ONE OF THE SOURCE MUST BE AN ACADEMIC SOURCE.

GENERAL TIPS
• Summarize the main claim, or thesis, of the article. What is the main point the author is seeking to make? The author may or may not state this directly, but you should always state your idea of his
or her main claim in your analysis as a complete sentence.
• Try to determine why the text was written. Is there an ongoing debate in other articles about the
topic which has prompted this author to write the article? Is the article directed toward a
specifically identifiable audience? What characteristics, interests, and/or experiences would the people in this audience have in common?
• Assess the credibility of the author. What is his or her occupation? Personal background? Political leanings? Sometimes you will need to consult other sources to find information about the author. Is
the text self-serving or can we suspect any biases. Is the author an expert (based on what qualifications?)? Does his/her expertise conflict with other experts regarding the issue in question?
• Assess the credibility of the main claims. Do any claim conflict with your background information, our experiences, and the claims of experts? If so, is an adequate account offered to
reconcile discrepancies that would otherwise be detrimental to the argument?
• Is the format of the article indicative of an argument type (deductive/inductive)? Is a deductive argument used to form a premise, or if the premises supporting the conclusion form a deductive
argument, are they valid? If so, are the premises sounds? Otherwise, are elements of the argument or the argument itself inductive? If so, is it strong? If so, is it cogent?
• Identify and evaluate the reasons the author gives for making the main claim. Are they really
good reasons? Are they relevant to the main claim? Sometimes authors present only one or two
reasons, often spending much time developing and supporting just one reason. Identify, analyze,
and evaluate the evidence given in support of the reasons. What kinds of evidence are given (data,
anecdotes, case studies, citations from authorities, research studies)? Is the evidence good
(sufficient, accurate, relevant, and credible)?
• Look for fallacies and rhetoric. If you discovery a fallacy, try to discern whether it is employed
intentionally or not. If not, could we rephrase or slightly modify the argument in order to salvage it,
thereby giving the author the benefit of the doubt or is it simply not salvageable? Look rhetoric
such as weaslers such as “on the whole,” “typically,” “usually,” or “most of the time” as well as
euphemisms, dysphemisms, etc.
• Determine what underlying assumptions the author might have. What ideas, beliefs,
philosophies, does the author seem to accept as mutually understood between himself or herself
and the audience? Are these assumptions valid? Note refutations. These are efforts the author
makes to anticipate objections and answer them in advance. Try to determine whether or not the
author demonstrates clearly why these objections, or counterclaims, do not undermine the basic
argument the author is trying to make.
• Note key terms. Does the author define these adequately? Would most readers agree with these
definitions? What clarifications might be needed? Note analogies and comparisons. What
connections does the author make between ideas and concrete examples? Are these appropriate?
Are the things being compared truly similar.

English 101: Planning

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