Informative Essay

ASSIGNMENT: Select ONE of the following writing prompts and complete a a 3-5 page (approximately 800-1300 words) informative essay. As a part of your completed draft, complete the color coding activity described below. In addition, answer the “Think About Your Writing” questions on a separate sheet of paper and include it with your draft submission.

In order to foster learning and growth, all essays you submit must be newly written specifically for this course. Any recycled work will be sent back with a 0, and you will be given one attempt to redo the touchstone. 

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PROMPT A: IMAGE ANALYSIS: Although we look at print advertisements every day, we often do not consider the ways in which they affect us. Visual images in ads can influence and persuade us, so it is important to evaluate them critically to understand their meanings. Good image analysis involves examination of the components of an image to gain an understanding of the whole.

Select an advertisement to analyze. The advertisement you choose should be directed towards a specific audience. To identify the intended audience, think about the members of the potential audience for the advertisement that you have chosen. Who are they? Ads for a beauty product, for example, may be aimed at young girls; ads for a deodorant might target men; a diaper commercial is likely intended for new parents; ads for cruise trips might be aimed at retirees. You can use any academically-appropriate advertisement to complete this assignment, as long as its intended audience is clearly identified.

Your thesis must inform the reader of your topic and purpose. Because you are writing in the informative mode, use objective language and a neutral point of view.

Draft an analytical essay that examines the audience, context, and purpose of the advertising image you’ve chosen. Read the article by Jenna Pack titled “Breaking Down an Image” for ideas about how to write an image analysis. Your analysis should lead to a conclusion about the ad’s effectiveness, based on examination of its components. Include the image with your draft. 

B. Think About Your Writing

As a part of your completed draft, complete the color coding activity and include answers to all of the questions below your draft.

PART 1: Color Coding Activity:
Using the color codes provided, evaluate your draft as follows:

  • Use red text to indicate your thesis statement.
  • Use green text to indicate the topic sentence of each body paragraph.

Part 2: Questions
1. What is the significance of your essay? Why should readers care about what you have written? (2-3 sentences) Sophia says: Think about why you decided to analyze this particular image, or why you picked the word you chose to define. Your interest in in your subject matter should be clear to readers.
2. Which areas of your draft do you think will benefit most from revision? (2-3 sentences) Sophia says: Consider the organization, style, focus, development, and conventions of your draft. Which areas did you struggle to complete?
3. Consider the strengths and weaknesses of your writing. How can you capitalize on your strengths and improve on your weaknesses in future essays? (3-4 sentences) Sophia says: Think about what was easy about writing the draft, and what was more difficult. For example, if you write paragraphs with strong topic sentences, but repeatedly use the same type of sentence to provide supporting details, you can improve your paragraphs by varying sentence structure.

DIRECTIONS: Refer to the checklist below throughout the writing process. Do not submit your Touchstone until your draft meets all of the guidelines.

Requirements

  • Your draft must be 800 to 1300 words in length (approximately 3-5 pages).
  • Informative Guidelines and Topic Selection Guidelines must be followed or your submission will not be graded.
  • Double-space your draft and use one-inch margins.
  • Use an easily-readable 12-point font.
  • All writing must be appropriate for an academic context.
  • Your draft must be original and written for this assignment. 
  • Plagiarism of any kind is strictly prohibited. 
  • Your submission must include your name, the name of the course, the date, and the title of your draft.
  • Your submission must include both your color-coded informative draft and your answers to the “Think About Your Writing” questions. 
  • Submit a only single file that contains all of the assignment components.
  • Acceptable file formats include .doc and .docx.

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