_l How to write a Histori c Datd Document BasedQuestion is not in essenceentirelyto Introduction: The purposeof a HistoricDocumentBasedEssayResponse your ability to write as a evaluate to also rather testyour knowledgeof the subjectexclusively,but documentsand use historic understand read and historian. The essiy is a way to illustrateyour ability to them to formulateand supporta working thesis. The focus of In writing an essayof this nature,there is no single answer,so you cannotbe right or wrong. of that data'As long as your answeris the assigimentis to developa thesisthroughyour interpretation the documentyou are correct' of content the by logical and your interpretationis supported A Stepby stepbreakdownand how Guide to the Essay: Thingsto focuson from a historicalstandpoint: L Readcarefullythe questionprompt and the historicalbackground.Be sureyou understandthe in the essay.Underlinethe key tasks questionbeingaskedand what needsto be accomplished to help you focus on what to look for question to the unique demandedanJ the key terms that are in the documentsand what to write about. 2. Readthe documentscarefullY. 3. Make surethat you understandthe contentof the document' .o What is the author'sPoint of View .o Whereis the tension? .o Remember,not all historic documentsare factual,they often illustrate perspectiveand asyou write you responseto supportof defend biased,this may needto be addressed your thesis.For example,are there authorsof the documentsfrom the sameplace with differingview Points .1.e. Is a Frenchmancritiquingthe Frenchor is it an Englishman? o9 In dealingperspective,note what the biasedis and, which documentsoffer the greater leveloffact. 4. When writing the actualessay,you shouldstriveto usemostof the document .o Do not omit more than a few, this can adverselyeffect your score 5. When writing,do not simply sitethe documentsin a list type manner. You shouldusethem in a way in which you use analyzeof their meaningto supportor further your argument. 6. You should strive to formulateorder with the documents' .o Attempt to group them in such a way to createan overall picture that supportsyour thesis. j. To stressthis for a SECONDtime, this assignment is intendedto show your ability to analyze documentsandtheir content. Your ability to performanalysiswill be illustratedby: thesis,which dividesyour answerinto .o Havingan essaythat containsa well-developed categories. .o The documentsare usedas evidenceto supportyour thesis,and the documentsare explainedand not merely quotedfrom' .o Frequentreferenceis madeto the terms of the question' .o The responseis focusedand maintainsthe main goalsof the question.Avoid drifting beyondthe parametersof the question.Be certainthat your answeris always focused directlYon the question. 8. Be certainthat,if the questionallows,you addressall of the following in writing your answer. .9 In questionsthat aremulti sided,make suremultiple sidesare addressedand the issueis from severalangles. discussed .o The validity or biasof documentsis noted. .o If applicablenote how the perspectivein the documentsmay have changedover time ' I.e. did the pendulumof historyswing in the chronologicalcourseof the Did it swingbackagain? documents? Things to focus on from a literary stand point' . Remember,this is a historyessay,so history,andyour skills as a historianwill be the graders focus, but theseare otherkey factorsto keep in mind: introductionin which the time frameis noted. . The essayhasan adequate providingan answerto the questionand dividesthe answerinto . The thesisis well developed, categories' formatwhen possible' . you employ a properessaystyle;shootfor a 5-paragraph . Grammarand spellingareadequate . Never write in first personand avoid secondperson(i.e' you, us' etc.) . Do Not tell the readerswhat they are "going to leam"' . All quotationsyou usefrom the documentsshouldbe limited to a short phrase,which is placedwithinihe contextof your answer,do not usemoreof the quotesthenyou haveto. . MAKE SURE ALL PARTS OF THE QUESTION HAVE BEEN ADDRESSED AND ANSWERED. the thesisand the evidence,restates . Make sureyou includea conclusionthat summarizes indicatesa direction for further study or occulrences' . Try to baseyour commentsand thesison the documents,NOT on outsideinformation. but it must not be the basisof Outsideinformationmay be usedto enhanceunderstanding Your argument.
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