First Evaluation Assignment



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This assignment will help you learn to:

  • Distinguish between paraphrasing and summarizing
  • Determine what is most important about the texts you're evaluating
  • Integrate others' ideas into your own writing
  • Make explicit connections between ideas that are implicitly linked

Summarize the text(s) you will evaluate for your first paper. Limit your summary to no more than 250 words.

When writing your summary, you must:

  • Separate the main ideas from the supporting ideas.
    When paraphrasing, you simply restate something you've read into your own words; you do not omit or evaluate the importance of any of the information. Summarizing, however, necessitates that you decide which are the main ideas in a text and address only those ideas. In other words, while a paraphrase should contain all the information from the original text, a good summary is more than translating a writer's meaning into your own words; summarizing is a critical, evaluative process because you must decide which ideas are the main ones.
  • Making an outline can help facilitate this step.
    If you're summarizing a plot driven text, such as a book, movie, or play, you could separate main ideas into chapters, acts, or themes. The events that occur in those larger units are supporting details. If you're summarizing a meal, you could designate courses, such as appetizers and dessert, as main ideas. The smaller units that comprise those courses, such as ingredients, are supporting details.
  • Use your own words, but quote particularly resonant words and phrases.
    (If you do quote, you must use MLA format).
  • Connect the main points.
    Especially those points that you must infer as a reader, consumer, watcher, etc
    1) Discriminate between important points and less important points
    2) Connect the main points and make inferences about the text by interpreting it
    3) Do not mention supporting details; all of the summary should not contain all of the details of the original text.
    4) Identify and report information critical to understanding the content and meaning of the text.

    Worth 10 points

Adapted from M.W.Zoetewey


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