COMM2202: Critical analysis essay

COMM2202 – Comparative Critique Essay Assignment (20%)
For your critique assignment, you will write a comparative review of two opinion articles about an issue
that has been hotly debated in the news within the past two months. Your assignment will use an essay
to compare and contrast the two articles.
To find suitable articles, do a search online or in the NAIT library database. You may find good options
by looking in the “Opinion” or “Analysis” sections of news websites. Make sure that each article is
reasonably long and substantial, with some depth and interesting aspects in the content.
You will want to take some notes while reading the articles. You need to have enough information to be
able to give a broad overview of the main argument of the articles, as well as to evaluate and compare
how effectively the authors present their information and persuade their intended audiences.
• Maximum length: 1100 words
• APA student paper format (
• APA-style citations and references (
• If desired, introduce the issue that the articles discuss with an opener to “hook” your audience.
This could be a provocative statement, a question, a short personal anecdote, recent news
story, or interesting statistic. Your opener must be specific, not a sweeping generalization.
• Provide a quick summary of the overall issue and discuss the context within which the articles
• Include a thesis statement with the main point or idea in your comparative critical analysis.
Explain why your findings about these articles are relevant or interesting in relation to the issue
• In a series of paragraphs, evaluate the content of the articles and the way the content is
presented from a compare/contrast viewpoint. You could comment on some (but not all) of the
following aspects: content/ideas, the way the argument is developed, whether the viewpoint or
recommendations are valid and well-presented, organization, audience, writing style, tone,
reading level, graphics/pictures/diagrams, layout.
Note that the best way to organize your paper is to compare or contrast some aspect of the two
articles within EACH body section. You will develop a stronger essay using this organizational
approach than if you try to analyze one article, then the other one, then compare them, which is
a structure that creates a slow-moving, unfocused, and uninteresting essay.
• Conclude your comparison with a strong and specific recap of your main points, restatement of
your thesis, and final summary of the relevance of your findings in relation to the issue at hand.
*Unlike our previous writing activities, the critique is a formal academic essay. As a result, you are
aiming for an objective tone, not a subjective tone. You will talk about “the reader” NOT “you” or
“I”. You are presenting an objective evaluation of the work, not discussing whether you personally
like it or think it is good or bad. You might use the pronoun “I” if you include a personal story in
your introduction, but the rest of the essay will use third person pronouns (“the author,” “the
reader,” “the audience”).

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