fall 2014 // MWF 11:15-12:05 // laura michael brown

peer review questions / archival analysis

Does the writer fulfill the assignment successfully?

  1. Does the writer appeal to their stated audience? How? By addressing them directly, using examples or evidence that audience would value, using pathetic/ethical/logical appeals that audience would respond to, or writing with a style/tone that audience would find appropriate and engaging? What more can they do to strengthen their appeals to their audience?
  2. What artifacts does the writer focus on? Is it clear, as you read the paper, which one or two artifacts the writer chose to highlight? Do they draw attention to the sources themselves, not just the information they got from those sources?
    • Does the writer describe those artifacts? Do you, as a reader, understand what the artifacts look like and consist of?
    • Does the writer evaluate those artifacts? Do they clearly evaluate the importance of the artifacts?
    • How does the writer analyze those artifacts? Do they explain/interpret the content of those artifacts?
  3. What argument does the writer make about this history and these artifacts? Restate that argument here (if you do not understand their argument clearly enough to restate it, let the writer know).
    • How do they support that argument? Does it need more/stronger support or evidence?
    • Is that argument directed toward their audience?
  4. Do you understand the history that the writer is retelling? Is anything confusing or difficult to understand? What needs clarification? What questions do you have after reading the piece—any that the writer might be able to answer and incorporate into their paper?


Is the writer successful in the structural and stylistic aspects of their work?

  1. How is this piece organized? Do they make a clear point in each body paragraph? Is there some order to their ideas, or does the progression of their argument seem random? How could they reorganize (or explain their organization more effectively) to improve the clarity of their argument?
  2. Do you think the introduction will catch the audience’s attention and effectively introduce the topic (whether or not a formal thesis statement appears in the first few paragraphs)? How could they make the introduction stronger or more interesting?
  3. Is the conclusion effective? Does it make it clear what the writer wishes the reader to take away from the analysis? What suggestions do you have for improvement?
  4. Describe the writer’s tone and style. How would you describe the attitude the writer communicates in their piece? Do you think that tone and style will appeal to their audience? Should they revise anything about their tone or style?
  5. What are your thoughts on the writer’s sentence structure? Identify any places where they might need to vary their sentence length to create interest or emphasis. Identify any place where they might experiment with punctuation to communicate the relationship between their ideas.

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