History 388

 

                                                Paper Critique Guidelines

 

     Your criticisms of another course paper should represent your best effort to serve as a constructive critic for the author of that paper. 

 

Your critique must include your name and the author and title of the paper to which you are responding.

 

Your critique will be graded on its usefulness for future revisions.

 

Your critique should include comments, criticisms, and suggestions on some (but not necessarily all) of the following:

 

1)  Organization

            Is the paper well-organized?  Does it have an effective introduction and conclusion? Do you think the author might develop his or her ideas more effectively by rearranging portions of the paper?

 

2)  Central or related themes

            Does the paper develop a clear central theme or a series of related themes?  Is the central claim of the paper presented as a thesis in the introduction?

 

3)  Logic and evidence

            Do the body paragraphs of the paper develop the claim made in the thesis statement?  Is the paperıs claim well supported by appropriate evidence? Is all evidence correctly referenced?

 

4)  Clarity

            Are the meanings of sentences clear? Does each paragraph have a clear topic? Does the overall argument ³make sense²?

 

5)  Writing style

            Does the author write in an active voice?  Are there smooth transitions between ideas and paragraphs?  Are there any usage problems or cases of awkward phrasing?

 

6)  Grammar

            Are there any consistent grammatical problems, especially sentence-level errors such as run-on sentences, sentence fragments, or subject-verb agreement errors?

 

7)  General

            What changes would make this a better paper?