Academic Evaluations

Organization by Comparison and Contrast

Sometimes comparison and contrast is not merely a strategy used in part [italics] of an evaluation, but is the strategy governing the organization of the entire essay. The following are examples from Stephen Reid's The Prentice Hall Guide for College Writers (4th ed.), showing two ways that a writer might organize an evaluation according to comparison and contrast.

Introductory paragraph(s)

Thesis [or overall claim/judgment]: Although several friends recommended the Yakitori, we preferred the Unicorn for its more authentic atmosphere, courteous service, and well-prepared food. [Notice that the criteria are stated in this thesis.]

Authentic atmosphere: Yakitori vs. Unicorn

Courteous service: Yakitori vs. Unicorn

Well-prepared food: Yakitori vs. Unicorn

Concluding paragraph(s) (Reid 339)

Introductory paragraph(s)

Thesis [or overall claim/judgment]: Although several friends recommended the Yakitori, we preferred the Unicorn for its more authentic atmosphere, courteous service, and well-prepared food. [Notice that the criteria are stated in this thesis.]

The Yakitori: atmosphere, service, and food

The Unicorn: atmosphere, service, and food as compared to the Yakitori

Concluding paragraph(s) (Reid 339).

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