Review your purpose, audience, and genre. Is your purpose clear to your target audience? Should you modify your chosen purpose to appeal to your audience? Criteria are standards of value. They contain categories and judgments, as in good fuel economy, good reliability, or powerful use of light and shade in a painting. Some categories, such as price, have clearly implied judgments (low price), but make sure that your criteria refer implicitly or explicitly to a standard of value.
Examine your criteria from your audience s point of view. Which criteria are most important in evaluating your subject? Will your readers agree that the criteria you select are indeed the most important ones? Will changing the order in which you present your criteria make your evaluation more convincing? Organize your essay around your criteria. Generally, this means one criterion per paragraph. Include both positive and negative evaluations of your subject. If all of your judgments are positive, your evaluation will sound like an advertisement.
If all of your judgments are negative, your readers may think you are too critical. Be sure to include supporting evidence for each criterion. Without any data or support, your evaluation will be just an opinion that will not persuade your reader. Avoid overgeneralizing in your claims. If you are evaluating only three software programs, you cannot say that Lotus 1-2-3 is the best business program around. You can say only that it is the best among the group or the best in the particular class that you measured.
Unless your goal is humor or irony, compare subjects that belong in the same class. Comparing a Ford Focus to a BMW is absurd because they are not similar cars in terms of cost, design, or purpose. Is your use of MLA format correct? Double check. If you are citing other people s data or quoting sources, check to make sure your summaries and data are accurate.
Signal the major divisions in your evaluation to your reader using clear transitions, key words, and paragraph hooks. At the beginning of new paragraphs or sections in your essay, let your reader know where you are going. Revise sentences for directness and clarity. Read your work out loud to find minor mistakes. Edit your evaluation for correct spelling, appropriate word choice,