How to Write an Evaluation Essay?

Many of us often hear questions about the type, why do you like only this cafe or buy only this newspaper. Justifying our answer, we usually give a list of reasons for our own choice. We try to select rational arguments so that our opponent does not have any doubts about our correctness. If you think that a similar task is not difficult, then you can deal with evaluation writing.

What is an Evaluation Essay?

As follows from the definition itself, such varieties of writing are designed to evaluate events, things, even people.

They are akin to the notices we encounter when reading book reviews or criticizing the cuisine of a new restaurant. But for a response, it is easy enough to explain sympathy or antipathy, whereas an evaluation essay needs specific criteria and reasons for the choice made. It serves as evidence in favor or as versus to a specifically chosen subject, requiring skills of critical thinking and analytical abilities.

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How to Pick a Good Evaluation Essay Topic

If the lecturer gives freedom, then your options are endless. The main thing is that the subject was familiar to you and not indifferent. If you are going to write about the advantages of a yacht, but you do not have the money to buy it, immediately discard this option. Choose what you know, like bicycles or school buses. Also, do not dwell on the subject of whom you have very vague memories, for example, the Scorpions’ concert in 2007. If you want to write about a film or a group, choose one whose performances can be reviewed and revived in memory.

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Also avoid excessively wide themes, as you risk drowning in analogies and examples.

Topic Ideas for Students

Possible themes for the evaluation essay could include sporting events, theater performances, art objects, places for leisure, personal hobbies and, of course, people. You may choose a famous politician, coach of the local hockey team or a street musician, interview them and evaluate their dignity and sins. Restaurants/food is an infinitely diverse topic. You can discuss taste, smell, cost, cooking methods and culinary traditions. You are allowed to compare a fashionable cafe with a university cafeteria, cooked food with a frozen analog.

Smartphones, tablets, dating sites, virtual business courses, and online libraries are the few topics that you can take into service. Is it worth changing your smartphone to a new one? How effective is distance learning and what are its advantages over stationary analog? Is the updated version of the game better than the previous one? How many family couples met in the chat rooms? Compare and draw conclusions for yourself and others.

Essay Structure

The evaluation essay format is similar to the typical types of writing, i.e., consists of an introduction, the main part, and a conclusion. But, before proceeding directly to the writing of the text, you must select the criteria for evaluation essay. Under the latter, it is necessary to understand those constituent elements of your topic about which you will make evaluative judgments on a scale “good-bad,” “acceptable-unacceptable.” The most optimal option is the availability of three to five categories for the assessment of the subject. Using a small number of criteria will lead to a deficit of necessary information, and your final score will seem unconvincing. On the other hand, the formulation of too many criteria threatens with an oversupply of data. Therefore, you will need more time to process them and develop an appropriate evidence base.

Focus on universally recognized standards, if you do not know where to begin research. For example, the criteria for the book include the plot, the characters, the presence of humor, the correspondence of the interior to the historical epoch, and the denouement. The cafe is judged on the quality of service and food, the cost and variety of dishes, the atmosphere, and location. If you evaluate the prospects of the baseball team, it’s not superfluous to read the manuals on this sport or talk to the coach.

How to Start an Evaluation Essay

Traditionally, the evaluation essay begins with an introduction including a central thesis, as well as the necessary background information. Here is an example of the wrong thesis: “I believe that everyone loves literature.” The statement is too abstract because there are a lot of literary genres. And here is an example of the correct thesis: “The monologue used in the novel “War and Peace” is an effective tool for revealing the hero’s inner world.” A specific criterion is used here, which can be both proved and evaluated.

It is in the introduction you determine the criteria that must be fully represented in the body of the essay. Before proceeding to present your own opinion, give people a general picture of the chosen subject. Specificity allows us to formulate an effective evaluation. If you have to evaluate a book, read it completely. If you are puzzled by a new dish, be sure to try it. Remember, you cannot properly assess the subject exclusively by rumors. In this case, your essay will be superficial and impersonal. So do not forget to confirm your statements with convincing examples and proofs.

Main Parts of an Evaluation Essay

The body of the evaluation essay should be presented in stages, in chronological or substantive order. First, describe and evaluate one of the elements of the subject, then the next, until you reach the final component. Such an organization is used not only when writing reviews of historical events or musical novelties, but also in describing the principles of the functioning of a new mechanism or process. In addition to consistent organization, there is also a spatial one, which is usually applied to artifacts of art.

You should also remember that your task is not only to evaluate the product, but also to provide specific examples that, in your opinion, better beat some of the key elements. If you think that there is too little humor in the film, it is worthwhile to bring a genre analog that justified the expectations of the audience. Another effective technique is to distinguish between the “typical” one and the chosen subject. Almost all satirical works are built on this contrast. So, for justifying an evaluation essay give similar comparisons either in the conclusions or in the introduction, describing the preliminary expectations of an event or thing.


The final part of the evaluation essay is the conclusion in which you collect all the evidence previously provided and are determined by the final verdict. Is it worth to watch this movie? Should I choose Mexican cuisine or stay true to Indian one? It is the conclusion that determines the value of your essay because it saves many people from unnecessary meditations and offers a ready-made solution.

In order for the evaluation essay not to appear boring and banal, it is not superfluous to use interesting adjectives, live dialogues, rhetorical questions, stories from the past or forecasts for the future. It is necessary to make the reader feel your attitude to the object, be it a person, a meal or a work of art. But at the same time, you need to maintain maximum objectivity, for example, by attracting the views of other experts. The evaluation essay should help people decide whether they want to visit a new restaurant or not, so do not spare the right details and be self-confident. After all, only a self-sufficient person can have his/her own opinion, different from others.

Examples of an Evaluation Essay

A well-written evaluative essay outline requires the writer to thoroughly analyze the essence of the chosen subject, its negative and positive aspects, and only then give a valid estimate. Remarks without verified evidence remain an empty criticism, casting a shadow on the competence of the author. Let’s say you need to evaluate the location of a cafe. You could focus readers’ attention on the fact that it is on a quiet street, in a favorable neighborhood, next door, for example, with a shopping center or kindergarten. When evaluating, it is important to remember the audience for which you are writing. If we are talking about students, they are unlikely to be attracted by a family atmosphere and a state of rest. Such things are more appreciated by aged people, moms or office workers, tired of everyday fuss. Although the low cost of coffee and cakes is a universal criterion for all social groups.

Or you have to evaluate a film. As a rule, an evaluation essay on a movie, attention is drawn to acting, storyline, and direction. You can go further and assess the accuracy of the events in the historical movie and its relevance for the present day. If you deal with the remake, do not be lazy to look at both versions and decide by comparing which one is better. A similar contrast can be applied to the music of different generations, for example, hippies and heavy metal. A separate category is television production with its shows and news programs. Choose one of them and try to evaluate its quality, social benefit, and believability. Thus, the evaluation argument essay should be a balanced composition that keeps the reader’s interest in the topic. Only in this case, your work will bring real benefits.

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How to Write an Evaluation Essay?. (2017, Dec 20). Retrieved from

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