Introduction to Psychology Reaction Paper Guidelines

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Introduction to Psychology Reaction Paper Guidelines

Definition of Genre:

In a reaction or response paper, writers respond to one or more texts they have read. A popular assignment with instructors in the social sciences and humanities, such papers require students to understand each text individually and evaluate how well each accomplishes its own objectives. If you are responding to multiple texts, you must also discover how the texts relate to one another. (If responding to just one text, you might need to situate it within the larger context of class discussions, readings, etc., depending on the prompt.) A reaction paper may include a discussion of interesting questions that the readings raise for the student, but such a discussion is not sufficient by itself.


Writing good response papers is more demanding than it might appear at first. It is not simply a matter of reading the text, understanding it, and expressing an opinion about it. You must allow yourself enough time to be clear about what each text says and how the texts all relate to one another. In other words, response papers require you to synthesize the intellectual work of others—that is, bring it together into an integrated whole. In preparing to write response papers, therefore, it is crucial that you allow yourself not just enough time to do the readings but enough to digest what you have read and to put the results together into a unified account.

( h t t p : / / u w p . a a s . d u k e . e d u / w s t u d i o)

Questions to ask while reading the article:

Use the “Template for Analyzing the Logic of an Article.” The questions from the template do not necessary need to be answered in the paper. They are just questions you need to understand in order to comprehend the articles.

Questions to ask while preparing to write your paper:

Refer to “Universal Intellectual Standards” and “Questions Using the Elements of Thought.”

Instructions for paper...
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