Responding

Inductive and Deductive Presentations of Response

Sometimes it also helps to think of sequencing or arranging your response in either an inductive format or a deductive format. An inductive format builds toward a conclusion, since an inductive process is "emergent," one thing leading to another, building upon another, like scaffolding. The inferential thesis with an inductive approach would come near the end of the essay. With a deductive format, the inferential thesis is delivered at the beginning, right up front. Think of this approach as "spilling the beans," essentially telling all that you know from the beginning and then using the rest of the essay to support or defend (provide evidence for) your thesis. In theory, either development is suitable, but it should also be said that there is a rather strong preference in much of college writing for the deductive approach.

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Introduction