MAJOR ASSIGNMENT #1:
REFLECTIVE ANALYSIS ESSAY
“An analysis examines an issue or topic by identifying the parts that make up the
whole” (McGraw-Hill Guide 198).
In this assignment, you will:
1. Select a “text” (real or fictional, can only be an image or video if it has a breadth of information to draw from)
2. Determine its rhetorical situation (purpose, audience, genre, stance, and any medium or design considerations)
3. Research and include context for the text (what is the bigger picture, the surrounding circumstances, the historical significance)
4. Analyze how its content is formed and how the author conveys it
5. Decide if the text is effective and use evidence from the text to support your claim as well as evidence from your research
In other words, your thesis should answer the question: Does this text achieve its purpose? If so,
how? If not, why not?
1. Select a text to analyze
2. Compose a textual analysis
• Select a text to analyze:
o A notable speech (e.g., JFK Inaugural Address, Trump Inaugural Address, Barack Obama “A More Perfect Union” OR another you may find on
AmericanRhetoric.com or Tedtalk)
o A television series (one episode usually works best)
o A book
o An article (scholarly or popular)
o A movie
o A song (a whole album may be too big of a topic)
• Compose a textual analysis that includes:
o Carefully selected beginning strategy
o A clear thesis about the text (is the text effective or ineffective, does it convey its message compellingly or not, is it well done or not?)
o Attention to the context (the bigger picture of the text: societal situations, historic conditions, etc.)
o Detailed summary of the text; author’s credentials if needed (may also be part of the context)
o Analysis/evaluation of the text’s style, tone, structure, etc. and how they support your thesis (why is it well done or not?) (McGraw-Hill Guide 207-208)
o Sufficient supporting evidence (details) from the text
o A conclusion that
▪ connects with the opening
▪ includes a brief summary of main points and
▪ leaves the reader with a resolution
ROUGH DRAFT – 50 POINTS
Format 10 MLA Document Format is attempted (12 pt, Times New
Roman Font, double spaced, etc.), 4 Pages Minimum
Organization 20 Employs beginning strategy, thesis sentence, and topic
Prompt 5 Addresses the main prompt directly and continues to
use relevant details that address the prompt.
Components of Analytical
15 Has an unbiased tone, includes necessary details, and
follows necessary analytical structure.
Grammar and spelling will not be considered in your draft.
FINAL DRAFT – 100 POINTS
Format 15 MLA Document Format is employed (12 pt, Times New
Roman Font, double spaced, etc.), 4-5 Pages
Organization 40 Employs beginning strategy, thesis sentence, and topic
sentences and connects all items together. Necessary revision is evident from the previous draft.
Source Use 25 Use of sources to backup claims and make connections. Sources are properly cited. Sources are properly paraphrased/summarized/quoted. Sources do not dominate the writer’s voice.
Grammar/Spelling 10 Grammar and spelling follow standard conventions.
Components of Analytical
35 Has an unbiased tone, includes necessary details, and follows necessary analytical structure.