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Rough Draft Peer Review Sheet
I. How well does the writer present the issue?
Summarize: Tell the writer what you understand the issue to be. If you are already familiar with it and understand it differently, briefly explain.
Praise: Give an example from the essay where the issue and its significance come across effectively.
Critique: Tell the writer where more information about the issue is needed, where more might be done to establish its seriousness, or how the issue could be framed or reframed in a way that would better prepare readers for the argument.
II. How well does the writer argue in support of the position?
Summarize: Underline the thesis statement and the main reasons.
Praise: Give an example in the essay where the argument is especially effective; for example, indicate which reason is especially convincing or which supporting evidence is particularly compelling.
Critique: Tell the writer where the argument could be strengthened; for example, indicate how the thesis statement could be made clearer or more appropriately qualified, how the argument could be developed, or where additional support is needed.
III. How effectively has the writer responded to others’ reasons and likely objections?
Summarize: Identify where the writer responds to a reason others use to support their argument or an objection they have to the writer’s argument.
Praise: Give an example in the essay where a concession seems particularly well done or a refutation is convincing.
Critique: Tell the writer how a concession or refutation could be made more effective, identify a reason or objection the writer should respond to, or note where common ground could be found.
IV. How clearly and logically has the writer organized the argument?
Summarize: Find the sentence(s) in which the writer states the thesis and forecasts supporting reasons, as well as transitions or repeated key words and phrases.
Praise: Give an example of how or where the essay succeeds in being especially easy to read, perhaps in its overall organization, clear presentation of the thesis, clear transitions, or effective opening or closing.
Critique: Tell the writer where the readability could be improved. Can you, for example, suggest better forecasting or clearer transitions? If the overall organization of the essay needs work, make suggestions for rearranging parts or strengthening connections.
Revising Your Draft
I. My readers don’t get the point.
Quote experts or add information – statistics, examples, anecdotes, and so on – to help readers understand what’s at stake.
II. My readers have different perspective on the issue than I do.
Reframe the issue by showing how it relates to values, concerns, needs, and priorities you share with readers.
Give concrete examples or anecdotes, facts, and details that could help readers see the issue as you see it.
III. My readers do not find my argument clear and/or persuasive.
Revisit your thesis statement to make sure your position is stated clearly and directly.
Reconsider your reasons, or explain how they support your position.
Add supporting evidence – statistics, examples, authorities, and so on.
Try outlining your argument; if your organization is weak or illogical, or if your transitional strategies are not working, try reorganizing the material, adding transitional words and phrases, or repeating key words strategically.
IV. My readers question my response to opposing arguments or objections to my argument.
If your refutation is weak, strengthen it with additional or more compelling reasons and evidence.
If your concession weakens your argument, qualify your position with words like sometimes or often.
V. My readers are confused by my essay or find it difficult to follow.
Outline your essay. If necessary, move, add, or delete sections to strengthen coherence.
Consider adding a forecasting statement with key terms that are repeated in topic sentences throughout the essay.
Check for appropriate transitions between sentences, paragraphs, and major sections of your essay.
Review your opening and closing paragraphs. Be sure that your thesis is clearly expressed and that you reaffirm your position in your closing.