Writing an evaluation essay is a great way to size up a particular object or idea. This type of critical writing sets precise criteria for evaluation, providing fair and solid supporting evidence so that readers can form their opinions about the subject.
Steps for Writing an Evaluation Essay
- Choose a topic that you would like to write about. Since you will need to make a value judgment based on a set of criterion, you should know your subject well.
- Formulate your thesis statement. The thesis statement of an evaluation essay is its overall purpose and should be stated clearly, giving you the direction that will allow you to distinguish between criteria and select appropriate examples. It should state value, or the lack of it, in regard to what you are writing about.
- Think of the criteria that you are going to use to make your judgment. It is difficult or even impossible to evaluate your subject immediately – choose several points of interest to make this process easier.
- Find supporting evidence to prove your point of view. Since you are making a judgment about an object and presume that your readers will take your viewpoint into consideration, you should not make general statements.
- Make a rough draft of your paper. In this draft, organize the criteria and the evidence that you find.
- Write the paper, following the classic structure: introduction, main body paragraphs, and a conclusion. In the introduction, introduce your value judgment about the chosen topic. In the main body paragraphs, present your supporting evidence to back up your judgment. In the conclusion, briefly summarize your material and restate your final judgment. Also, include a synthesis of your evidence.
- Proofread your paper a few times.
Since there are many objects and phenomena that we are able to assess, an evaluation essay can be written on a range of topics. To evaluate an object, you will need to compare it with an example within a subject you have chosen; therefore, searching for a conventional standard as a model is a sound idea. Some possible topics of an evaluation essay are listed below:
- a vacation spot
- a new restaurant
- an educational website
- foreign policy of a certain state or province
- deeds of a famous historical figure
- service quality
- a museum
- a piece of art
Key Points to Consider
- No matter how enthusiastic or negative your attitude is towards the chosen topic, the general tone of your essay should be reasonable.
- You can use quotations, personal experiences, descriptions, or comparisons with similar objects as evidence.
- An evaluation essay is not about giving an unbiased point of view – you come up with an evaluative thesis and provide evidence in its defense.
- The more controversial the subject you have chosen for your essay, the more supporting arguments you might need.
- It is also useful to present the opposite point of view. In this way, you will show that you are aware that other opinions on the topic also exist.
Do and Don’t
Common Mistakes When Writing an Evaluation Essay
- Confusing an evaluation essay with a review. A review is a brief summary and commentary of a book, a movie, or a play, while an evaluation paper provides readers with your personal and detailed assessment about a certain object or idea.
- Choosing too broad of a topic. If you go too wide, you will have to deal with a large amount of possible criteria and supporting evidence, not to mention that it will be more difficult to make an evaluation.
- Writing about an insufficient number of criterion. If you have less than at least three criteria, you will not be able to assess your object in its entirety.
- By any means, avoid using arguments like: “This restaurant is the best in the city because it is great.”
Now that you have acquainted yourself with the basic evaluation essay writing tips and rules, you can check out our evaluation essay samples to link theory with practice.