Essay #1 – Article Analysis
For this essay, we will be focusing on improving your information literacy
skills. “Information literacy” is a term that deals with the ability to find,
evaluate, and use the information readily available to you in today’s world.
This type of skill is especially important in today’s climate of “fake news.”
We will also be addressing the idea of media bias and objectively analyzing
documents using the knowledge you have already gained about purpose,
audience and tone.
For this Article Analysis, you will need to gather two news articles that you
have not worked with yet. It would be best to gather these articles from
magazines or newspapers. Some online sites will be accepted, but you will
want to double check them with me first. You will have two options for your
news articles. You can either choose two American news articles or one
American article and one article from a major news source in another country.
Rules for sources:
1) The articles must be over the same exact news story. Thus, you will
need to choose news stories that are large enough to gather attention in
two major cities, or in our country and another country.
2) The articles must be from a recent news story (not more than two weeks
old at the time you select them).
3) The articles must be written in English and be strictly print. You should
not choose anything that also contains a video.
4) Your articles should only come from reputable sources.
Once you have chosen your two articles, print them out or screenshot them,
just in case something happens to the online version. You don’t want them to
change or get taken down while you are trying to work on this essay.
When you have settled on two appropriate news articles, you must then work
through analyzing them. Use some of the following questions to guide you
through thinking about the articles:
1) Where was this published? What do you know about the publication /
publisher? Who is the author? If there is not one, what does that mean?
Do you know anything about the political leanings of the author or
2) What is this author/article trying to get its reader to think or do? Why
was this written? What is the article’s purpose? Does it inform,
persuade, describe, entertain, etc.?
3) How does the author/article work to get its point across? What
techniques does the writer use to get readers to think or do certain
things? What details does the writer most want you to notice? Are there
photos, graphics, color, etc.? How do those elements affect this article?
After you have done a complete analysis on both articles, then work to compare
and contrast the two articles. Do these articles take the same position on this
issue? Why or why not? How are they similar? How are they different? Is one
article stronger than the other? What is the connection between these two
articles (besides the story content)?
Writing the Essay
Once you have completed all of the analysis of the two articles and have
compared and contrasted them, you will be ready to begin your essay. You will
probably want to create some sort of loose outline so you can be organized in
how you discuss these articles. Your essay will need a thesis, so you will need
to have an overall point that you want to make about these two pieces. (More
discussion on this will come in your course).
Your introduction will provide a short bit of information about the topic that
these two articles cover, introduce the author and title information for both
articles, and then make some sort of strong thesis statement. The body of the
essay will work to prove your thesis by discussing your analysis of the two
articles. You will then need a strong conclusion to tie everything together.
A Strong Essay #1 Will:
• Be at least two FULL pages in length (you will likely write more than this)
• Include an accurate Works Cited page (not part of the length)
• Provide analysis for each article
• Make connections between the two articles
• Avoid plagiarism by using paraphrasing with attributive tags or direct
quoting with citations.
• Use a formal tone (no first person, second person, contractions, slang,
• Be in proper MLA format (there will be significant point loss for this, so
• Avoid sentence level mistakes (grammar issues, word choice, etc.)
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