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15.1: Introduction to Sample Essays

Skills to Develop

  1. Identify the role of reading in the writing process.
  2. Read examples of the rhetorical modes.

This chapter contains quality samples of the rhetorical modes described in Chapter 10 "Rhetorical Modes". While you read these essays, remember the purpose of the writing and pay attention to the following:

  • Thesis statement. What is the author’s main point of the essay? Identify the sentence and see how well it is supported throughout the essay.
  • Topic sentence. How well does each topic sentence support the thesis, and how well does it describe the main idea of the following paragraph?
  • Supporting evidence. Identify the evidence that the author uses to support the essay’s main ideas, and gauge their credibility.

The best way to become a better writer is to become a closer reader. As you read each essay carefully take note of the content and the structure as well as the thesis statement, topic sentences, and supporting evidence. These should shape your response to the essay and should also shape your writing.

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