When an essay question asks you to discuss

Study guide For a printer-friendly PDF version of this guide, click here To write a good essay, you firstly need to have a clear understanding of what the essay question is asking you to do. Understanding the meaning of these directive words is a vital first step in producing your essay.

When an essay question asks you to discuss

Contrast Question words that require a critical approach Some question words require a critical answer and there are varying degrees of how critical your answers must be according to the requirements of the question.

In other words, this word requires you to break the essay topic down into its fundamental parts. You need to use important debates and evidence to look in depth at the arguments for and against, as well as how the parts interconnect. What does the evidence suggest? Make your position known and tie this to the literature.


Evaluate When answering this essay question word, the key is to provide your opinion or verdict concerning the extent to which an argument or set of research findings is accurate. You may also be required to demonstrate the extent to which you agree with a particular argument or hypothesis.

It is essential to provide information on both sides of the debate using evidence from a wide range of academic sources. Then you must state your position basing your arguments on the evidence that informed you in arriving at your position.

In such answers, you need to present your evidence in a convincing way, demonstrating good reasons for adopting your position.

Also, you may want to consider arguments that are contrary to your position before stating a conclusion to your arguments.

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This will help present a balanced argument and demonstrate wide knowledge of the literature. Here, a critical approach becomes crucial.

When an essay question asks you to discuss

You need to explain why other possible arguments are unsatisfactory as well as why your own particular argument is preferable. This should be done in as critical a manner as possible. Provide your opinion on the extent to which a statement or research finding is true.

A critical evaluation of a subject will warrant an assertive essay response that details the extent to which you agree with a set of findings, a theory, or an argument.

Terms or directives for essays, reports, & answering questions

The key to tackling these question words is providing ample evidence to support your claims. Ensure that your analysis is balanced by shedding light on, and presenting a critique of, alternative perspectives.

It is also important that you present extensive evidence taken from a varying range of sources. State your conclusion clearly and state the reasons for this conclusion, drawing on factors and evidence that informed your perspective.

Also try to justify your position in order to present a convincing argument to the reader. This is done by recapping or summarising the major themes or points in question, and critically discussing them while giving your opinion.

For example, you may be asked to review the literature on electoral reform in Great Britain. You'll need to give an overview of the literature. You then need to comment logically and analytically on this material.

What do you agree or disagree with? What have other scholars said about the subject?

Analyse, Explain, Evaluate 22 essay question words and how to answer them | Oxbridge Essays

Are there any views that contrast with yours? What evidence are you using to support your assessment? Review answers should not be purely descriptive; they must demonstrate a high level of analytical skill. The aim is not simply to regurgitate the works of other scholars, but rather to critically analyse these works.Looking at the essay question in close detail will help you to identify the topic and ‘directive words’ (Dhann, ), which instruct you how to answer the question.

Understanding the meaning of these directive words is a vital first step in producing your essay. identify the task: all IELTS essay questions ask you to write in a particular way: this is the task. Examples of this are “Say whether you agree or disagree about x”, or “Say what the causes of y are”.

Discuss: The term discuss, which appears often in essay questions, directs you to examine, analyze carefully, and present considerations pro and con regarding the problems or items involved. This type of question calls for a complete and entailed answer.

Enumerate: The word enumerate specifies a list or outline form of reply.

When an essay question asks you to discuss

Feb 06,  · Essay question says ' Discuss' how do I write the question as a discussion? Hi when you discuss a question you simply give the facts. Then give all the different opinions re these facts. You probably answered your essay question in the proper form, but when you were told your "references were no good", your teacher should Status: Resolved.

How to understand the essay question As your first step in preparing for the essay, take some time to think about what the question means and what you are being asked to do.

You may think that the question looks straightforward and want to charge straight in and begin reading, or even writing a first draft of your essay. Sep 05,  · How to Write a Good Answer to Exam Essay Questions.

Answering essay questions on an exam can be difficult and stressful, which can make it hard to provide a good answer.

an essay question that asks you to “describe” an issue will be different from an essay question that asks you to “argue” a position. It could also ask you to 84%().

Essay terms explained — University of Leicester