How to Write a Response Essay

How to Write a Response Essay

Throughout one’s years in college, they will be required to submit papers on a variety of topics. In most cases, these essays are usually a review of articles, books, journals or papers written by other authors and barely the opinion of the student doing the paper. A response essay, on the other hand, is an opportunity for a student to voice their opinion about a paper, article or book. Response essays can also be described as reactive essays.

When writing a response essay, it is important that the opinion of the writer is presented in a professional and respectful manner. Since response essays are subjective and ardent, it is crucial that the writer supports their opinion with facts and statistics based on the subject they are reacting to. As a result, the essay should have arguments based on logic and which are well thought out. The essay should combine one’s personal experience and values as they relate to the topic they are reacting to.

Like with any other essay, a response essay needs to have an outline. An introductory paragraph which includes a thesis statement is vital. The thesis statement highlights what the paper will be about and is basically a window into the opinion of the author of that particular paper. It is important to remember that the essay is not a review or a rehash of the article or book in question. The first paragraph will, therefore, give a brief outline of why the author of the response essays disagrees with the subject in question.  The use of the first person when writing the essay is allowed.

The body of the essay follows the introductory paragraph. In the body, one could start out by giving a brief outline of the paper or book they are writing about. This is then followed by why the author disagrees with the content in question. Since this paper is a heartfelt opinion, it is important to compare your opinion as well as the original author’s opinion and reflect on how this affects your personal opinion. The body can be as long or as short as desired.

The concluding paragraph is a summary of the opinions voiced in the body of the essay. The summary is basically about whether the perspective of the author of the response essays agrees or disagrees with the initial author and reflections on these perspectives. A response essay seeks to determine what the original author was trying to promote, the personal opinion of the author of the response essay and how these have affected the personal experience of the writer of the response essay.

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