English 1301 – Response Paper #4
The Response Papers in our course will serve as sort of a “warm-up” to the
Academic Essays you will be writing later in the course. Because the lengths of
these Response Papers are shorter than those of essays, the Response Papers
give you a chance to work on presenting writing that is thorough, clean, and
error free. Thus, even though these documents are not lengthy, you should
spend a good bit of time on them, to ensure that your writing is grammatically
correct, and as developed as possible.
Response Paper #4 Topic:
For the fourth Response Paper, you have two choices. You could use the
article you wrote about for Response Paper #3 and find another one on the
same topic. If you didn’t really like your topic for RP #3, however, or don’t like
that article, your other choice is to find two new articles over a similar topic.
You do not have to have the same topic as you used in RP #3 if you are
changing articles. You do need to choose a topic that you feel strongly about or
are very interested in, though. Please avoid the over-used topics such as
abortion, capital punishment, drinking age, and legalizing marijuana (unless
you find a new angle to address).
The two articles that you choose for this Response Paper need to be addressing
the exact same topic, though they might differ in their opinions or the way that
the discussion is handled. You want to choose articles from reputable sources,
just like last time. Again, starting in the El Centro College online databases
can be helpful, but the regular Internet can be fine too.
For this Response Paper, your task will be to compare and contrast the two
articles, using the information provided in your class session (or course
assignment information). This Response Paper will be the most formal one that
you have written to date. You will NOT be using first person “I,” “we” or “our”
in this piece. You also need to avoid second person “you” and “your,” along
with any slang or colloquial language. You also need to avoid contractions
(words like “can’t,” “won’t,” “it’s,” etc.).
You will need an introduction paragraph for this Response Paper. In some
way, you need to introduce both article titles (which are formatted with quotes)
and the author names for the articles. Keep in mind that your reader knows
nothing about your assignment, so you will probably want to introduce the
topic and articles in the first paragraph, before beginning your comparison /
contrast. An easy way to include a thesis in your introduction paragraph
(which is normally the last sentence of the Introduction) is to decide whether
these articles are more alike or more different. A sample might be something
like this: “Through careful consideration of the two articles, readers can see
that though they discuss the same news story, they differ more than they are
alike.” Obviously, I don’t expect your thesis statement to be as wordy or as
complex as mine, but this should help you as an example.
Then, you will set out to prove your thesis statement with the discussion of the
two articles. You will spend the majority of the paper comparing and
contrasting the articles in one of the ways presented to your class. The paper
will also need a short concluding paragraph to tie back to the thesis and give
the reader an overall, “so-what?” moment.
For this Response Paper, you want a balanced discussion of the two articles.
You don’t want to have a large discussion of one of the pieces and just a brief
discussion of the other. Try to be as balanced as possible. It may be that one
of the articles is longer than the other, but try to discuss them equally.
Keep in mind that your comparison / contrast needs to be more than just a
summary of what is in the articles. It might help you to think over what things
work for the articles, and what things don’t. You can also think about what
you like and dislike about the articles, though you won’t be sharing your
feelings with the reader this time.
A Successful Response Paper #4 Will:
• Meet the length criteria of at least one page. (You can always write more,
but this is the minimum)
• Follow correct MLA format (see links provided)
• Include a Works Cited page with both articles listed correctly
• Be clean of sentence level errors, such as spelling and grammar
• Be organized with similar ideas in the same paragraphs
• Use appropriate paragraphing and indentation
• Be formal in nature, avoiding first person, second person, slang and
• Have a detailed comparison and contrast of the two articles
NOTE: You will also need to attach the articles when you submit your
Response Paper. Be sure to copy and paste the URL of the article into the
“Comments” section when submitting your paper. If your article comes from a
print source and you didn’t find it online, speak with me about how to submit
it. **Your assignment will not be submitted correctly without the article, so
please be careful to include it.**
Purchase answer to see full attachment