Evaluation Essay Example Using Effective Reasoning

If you have an assignment to write an essay assessing the effectiveness or quality of something, it helps to have an evaluation essay example to inspire you. This form of paper is actually a type of opinion essay; you’ll need to evaluate something and express your opinion about it. The key is that your opinion must be based on reason and free of bias. It’s a tricky line to walk, but looking at an example can help.

Students writing Evaluation Essay Using Effective Reasoning Students writing Evaluation Essay Using Effective Reasoning
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Evaluation Essay Example for a College Course

This evaluation essay example focuses on reviewing a college course. This familiar topic is a good one for students to review, as you'll be able to relate the essay topic to your own personal experiences.

Brief Excerpt from Sample Essay

A brief excerpt from the full sample essay appears below, followed by the entire essay in a printable format.

The ideal research and composition class offers students the opportunity to learn about different research methods, practice properly citing sources according to their chosen or assigned style guide, and perfect their writing skills with a variety of different essay and paper types. However, the best research and composition courses also include an emphasis on revision and giving and receiving feedback about written work. To do this, the instructor must foster a supportive and emotionally safe classroom environment for students to share their work with one another. English 101 at Northwestern Michigan Community College meets many of the criteria to be considered an excellent research and composition course at the community college level.

Printable Sample Evaluation Essay

To review the complete evaluation argument essay example, click the thumbnail image below. It will open as a PDF that you can save or print. Notices how the text provides a well-thought-out argument to back up the author's assertions.

example evaluation essay example

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Deconstructing the Sample Essay

The example document uses a simple evaluation essay format that you can adapt to create an outline for your essay. As you review the example, compare it to the outline format that was used. Looking at the sample essay from this perspective can help you come up with an appropriate outline for your evaluation essay topic, which you can then expand into a complete essay

  1. First, the criteria for the evaluation are laid out in the introduction.
  2. Next, each body paragraph covers one of these criteria and how the course measures up.
  3. Finally, the conclusion offers an overall evaluation of the course.

How to Use Effective Reasoning in an Evaluation Essay

As you can see from the example evaluation essay, the key to success in this type of writing is using effective reasoning. You are sharing an opinion, but you’re also showing the reader how you reached the conclusion you did. If you can back up your opinion with a well-reasoned process and communicate that to the reader, you have succeeded. The following tips can help you write a quality essay.

Choose a Specific Topic

Commonly, evaluation essays focus on topics like social institutions, school programs, medical treatments, and other products, programs, and processes. However, the topic you choose needs to be specific. You can’t evaluate restaurants in general; instead, it should be a specific café. Similarly, you can’t evaluate an entire school district; choose one class or program.

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Clearly Define Success or the Ideal

When you evaluate anything, you are measuring it against the ideal. In order to do that, you first need to define the ideal. In an evaluation essay, you should share that definition with the reader in your introduction paragraph. Be detailed in describing the ideal and include several criteria for success or perfection. You will need at least three criteria because these will be the body paragraphs of your essay.

Cover Each Criterion in Detail

When writing your essay, cover each criterion as it relates to the ideal. If your idea of a perfect peanut butter and jelly sandwich has smooth peanut butter, homemade grape jelly, and fresh white bread, you need to devote a paragraph each to the peanut butter, the jelly, and the bread. Consider how the thing you are evaluating measures up to the ideal in this specific way. Offer supporting details from your experience or research to support your assessment.

Form a Natural Conclusion

Your final evaluation should be a natural conclusion from the rest of the essay. If you are stating that a sandwich is perfect, you need to prove that before you get to the conclusion. The conclusion should not come as a surprise to the reader. You have been showing him or her why you think this all through the essay.

A Study in Reasoning

While an evaluation essay is a writing assignment, it’s also a study in reasoning. Learn about inductive reasoning and deductive reasoning and how you can use these processes to prove conclusions in your writing. Consider reviewing types of logical fallacies too, so you'll know how to recognize (and avoid!) faulty reasoning. The better you are at communicating and supporting your work with good reasoning, the better your grade will be.