Useful Tips that Guarantee Stellar Critical Writing

Consider this situation. You have been asked to complete a four-page critical essay as part of the requirements to pass your course and you have no idea how to proceed. You end up stressed and anxious as the submission day fast approaches. What do you do? Do you proceed to write up any paper on any topic? Do you ask your friend for help? Or should you just accept your fate and fail the assignment. Well, there is some good news. There is no reason to panic. This article outlines all the information you need on how to proceed with your critical essay.

Table of Contents

First… What Is a Critical Essay?

Before we can delve deeper into the process of writing, we should first consider defining the concept. A critical essay can be understood to refer to a type of academic writing that aids in understanding a piece of work. The writer is often expected to make a sound argument with respect to a certain movie, text, or art. The objective here is twofold. First, you should start by identifying and explaining the argument made by the author. Secondly, you should make your own argument regarding the source. The instructor will be interested in what you have to say. As such, focus on your subjective opinions, demonstrating your ability to understand, internalize, and communicate your thoughts regarding an issue or material.

To write critically means to actually consider what the piece of literature or cinematography means to you and find a way to communicate your thoughts. In other words, you will need to consider the work, form opinions about it, and consider how the ideas presented connect to the real world.

Here Is a Comprehensive Guide for Writing a Good Critical Essay

Now that we have explored the definition of the concept of critical writing, let us get on with how to complete this type of work. Please note that exemplary papers do not happen by accident. They are the product of careful planning, as well as the meticulous execution of the plan. Ultimately, you will also need to make sure that your paper is clear and well-structured. Nonetheless, the very first step in completing an outstanding essay should be carefully reading and understanding the prompt. This is where the instructor communicates the requirements that should guide your work.

Once you have read and understood the tasks you are required to undertake, the next step should be to read and understand the required text. As part of the critical reading, ensure that you:

  • Identify the author’s main ideas;
  • Determine the main thesis in the text;
  • Assess the degree to which the author succeeds in conveying his o her message.

Please consider these goals as you read as they will help when formulating your outline. Make sure to look up the definitions of unfamiliar phrases, words, and concepts. This will improve your understanding of the issues discussed. Take detailed notes of main points as you go through the text.

The next important step if you wish to complete an outstanding paper is to brainstorm and draft an outline. Writers depend on outline the same way builders rely on a blueprint. It offers direction to the writing process, ensuring that you do not miss any important details. As you plan, consider such issues as format and organization. Use your notes from the reading and brainstorming sessions to indicate various sections and subsections.

Make sure to cite all your sources. This is a basic requirement for all forms of academic writing. Even if the critical essay may only be referring to a single source, it must still be cited within the text. make sure you know which convention is appropriate for your assignment.

As you write, make your own arguments distinct, relating them with the main points communicated in the source. Most students fear critical analyses, especially if the text to be examined has been authored by experienced policymakers or authors. The best way to approach this type of project is by considering your role as one of exposing the fact that even the most qualified authors are just trying to advance arguments and provide evidence. Examine, for example, how well the author uses examples and evidence to support his or her examples

What About the Essay Outline? How Is It Written?

The outline is your plan that guides the entire writing process. A good tip is to begin your paper with a brief summary of the material before going deeper into an analysis of the arguments. Although there is no universal rule, it is best to divide your work into sections and subsections. Start out with a short introductory section, where you orient your reader for what is to follow. This then followed by the body of the work, where you lay out your arguments and support them with evidence and examples from the source.

Since this type of assignment is often quite short, be concise throughout your analysis. As you follow the outline you may realize that you need to make some adjustments to ensure a coherent argument. Here are some elements to consider for your outline:

  • Introductory paragraph —provide some background information to identify the work, present the thesis statement of the material, and review your main argument.
  • A brief summary of the material —only provide what will aid the reader in understanding your argument.
  • A detailed argument —present your main points and sub-arguments
  • Concluding remarks —show how your points work to prove your argument and note areas that could benefit from more analysis.

Creating Amazing Introduction and Conclusion Sections

The introduction is arguably the most important part of your paper. It is what your reader will encounter before they get to read the rest of your work. As such, your goal should be to make sure that this section is interesting, yet concise.

The conclusion is another part of the critical writing that is often forgotten. This is your chance to wrap things up in a nice way and bring closure. A good paper ends with a restatement of the main thesis and a summary of the key points. You could also note some areas that can benefit from additional research or analysis.

Examples of Well-Written Critical Essays

The best way to demonstrate how the tips outlined here can be executed is by providing some examples of critical papers. So, here is a sample of a well-reasoned paper. Try to resist the urge to rewrite the content, though.

Sample Critical Literary Essay

A Critical Analysis of What Patients Taught Me

  • Introduction

One of the main roles of nurses in palliative care is communicating with and caring for critically ill patients and those approaching the end of their lives. This job can be quite taxing yet gratifying. In What Patients Taught Me: A Medical Student´s Journey, Young (2009) offers insights into what caregivers go through as well as the ethical challenges they have to manoeuvre. By critically examining Young’s work, it is apparent that healthcare providers need to implement procedures to help their patients prepare for the end-of-life process. The book offers a compelling memoir of the emotional complexity that healthcare providers encounter on a daily basis.

  • Book Summary

In What Patients Taught Me: A Medical Student´s Journey, Audrey young provides a narration of his experiences providing palliative care as a young doctor. The author provides a narration of her experiences and fears as she encountered patients with life-threatening illnesses around the globe.

  • Critical Analysis

One of the main premises informing the provision of palliative care is understanding that death is natural, and that it deserves special attention. However, even with this understanding, care providers are still often ill-prepared for what they encounter in the course of their practice. Young (2009) does a good job painting a vivid picture of some of the challenges that practitioners face. Through his first-hand depictions, the sensitive narrations can act as a guide to assist readers as they go through similar situations. Despite the author’s sometimes overly earnest tone and her use of some medical terminology, most of the reflections in her memoirs are poignant, particularly when she resigned solitude in the middle of her sleep-deprived 36-hour shifts. Even in this case, the author still manages to cover some of the key factors affecting effective patient care and the formation of effective therapeutic relationships, which is prolonged shifts and sleep deprivation.

In sum, What Patients Taught Me is an excellent book illustrating the clinical experiences of care providers and the ethical dilemmas they face, particularly in the delivery of end-of-life care to culturally diverse populations. The memoirs present a good amalgamation of narrative and reflection, although neither approach is deep or complex. These key features, coupled with the author’s fast-paced and clear style of writing, make the book an ideal material for introductory courses on doctor-patient relationships and professionalism. In the same regard, it is a useful reading for undergraduates contemplating a career in medicine. The depth of the ethical implications of the issues discussed in the book is demonstrated further in the subsequent section of the analysis.

  • References

Young, A. (2009). What Patients Taught Me: A Medical Student’s Journey. Sasquatch Books.

Some Popular Critical Essay Topics

Here are some popular topics to consider as you prepare to write your paper:

  • Feminist trends in a particular piece of literature;
  • Describe primary or secondary characters in a particular book;
  • Examine how the author’s background shapes his or her writing;
  • Pick a recent movie or series and analyze it;
  • Analyze a concept in your field/
  • Discuss the economic benefits of recycling.

Additional Tips to Refine Your Writing

The most important point if you want to complete an outstanding work is to come up with a clear argument or thesis. Please note that there is no magic formula for writing a good thesis. However, a good tip is to develop one that is arguable and concise and incorporate it towards the end of the introductory paragraph.

A good paper also uses contextual evidence properly. As you conduct your analysis, you will be required to use evidence and examples from the source, including direct quotations. Try to avoid sentences that are entirely composed of a quote. You don’t need to remind your readers about the plot as your main task is to draw conclusions.

Use your paragraphs strategically, ensuring that each one covers only one main idea. Paragraph breaks provide brilliant short pauses for your readers. Use transitions to provide flow.

Plan your time well. Most students procrastinate their projects, only rushing to put a paper together at the very last minute. Don’t make the same mistake. Quality writing is a process that entails research, planning, drafting and editing. Make sure that you allocate enough time for each exercise.

Make sure to edit and proofread your work. Most students fail their projects due to negligence. Take your time to carefully read and reread the text, eliminating errors and typos before you submit it. Confirm whether the ideas you present are thought-provoking and whether your thesis statement is well-defined. If possible, ask a friend or family member to help with the proofreading exercise.

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