Analyzing Written Essays

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The four types of essay organizations discussed in the course readings are topic, time order, space order and informative process. The characteristics that make these essays expository are a defined thesis in the introduction, evidence in each paragraph to support the thesis, information presented in a non-biased opinion, and the use of third person writing.

Space order refers to information that deals with location. Time order is organized information that sequentially moves from one time period to another. Informative process is best described as instructional writing or “how to” writing.

“How to Succeed as an Online Student” lists important steps to teach online students what it takes to be successful in an online academic atmosphere. This helps the reader understand that in order to succeed you must follow these steps.

The essay “A Soul as Free as the Air: About Lucy Stone” organizes information about Lucy Stone’s life in chronological order. This helps the reader to understand that the essay is based on the achievements of Lucy Stone in the order that they occurred.

“A Soul as Free as the Air: About Lucy Stone” has the most effective organization. The essay organizes the information from the beginning of Lucy stones achievements; being the first woman in Massachusetts to receive a college degree; to the end of her achievements as being the first woman to keep her own last name after being married. Time order organization is most effective for this essay because it lists her accomplishments from the beginning to the end.

The essay “How to Succeed as an Online Student” is written with informative process organization and lists steps to becoming a successful online student. If the organizational style were to change to time order, the point of the article would be completely different. The essay would no longer be a “how to” and instead would become an essay on the changes of online schooling from the beginning to the present....
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