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Reflective Essay Prompt: Synthesis Essay-Argumentative Essay

  • Minimum of 400 words, but no more than 600 (1.5-2 pages)
  • Points will be deducted if the essay is shorter or significantly longer than this range.
  • 1 inch margins
  • Double-spaced, Times New Roman font, size 12
  • Must be uploaded to Blackboard as a .doc or .docx file.

The Assignment: 

For this essay, you will reflect on your writing process for the synthesis essay and the argumentative essay. Reflect on: (1) what you did well; (2) what you struggled with, or feel you might need to continue working on if asked to do another synthesis essay and/or a argumentative essay incorporating research in the future (or, perhaps, what you might have done differently to make it easier); and (3) how you met the ICaP outcomes listed below. For the synthesis and argumentative essays, we focused primarily on the following ICaP outcomes:

  • Critically think about writing and rhetoric through reading, analysis, and reflection (i.e., your source material and argumentative strategies)
  • Compose a variety of texts in a range of genres
  • Perform research and evaluate sources to support claims

To illustrate your growth in meeting the outcomes noted above, explicitly mention the following rhetorical moves:

  • Cite specific examples within your drafts and how they illustrate your ability to meet specific outcome(s).
  • Compose a variety of texts in a range of genres
  • Explain the differences or any difficulties experienced when writing a report for the synthesis essay versus writing an argumentative essay.
  • How were you able to make the change from one genre to the other?
  • Refer to the growth of your essay (anywhere from the brainstorming process to the final version) and how you were able to revise your practices, strategies, or thought processes.
  • Explain how your thoughts, practices, and style have developed in the argumentative essay
  • Cite specific changes you made from draft to draft
  • Explain how you were able to incorporate feedback from your peers and me, thus showcasing your collaborative skills
  • Cite specific examples
  • Discuss how you were able to implement or take advice, which led to new thinking strategies
  • Explain how you expereinced the research process for these two essays
  • Discuss how you began researching this essay. What databases did you use? How did you narrow down your choice of sources to the four best sources for the synthesis essay?
  • For the argumentative essay, how did you determine what source(s) you still needed? (in order to meet the additional source requirement?)
  • For the argumentative essay, how were you able to balance using a minimum of five sources with your own developing argument? That is, how did you go about making sure that your voice, your argument, was not overly dependent upon, or drowned out, by your sources?

**Because it bears repeating, remember to cite direct examples from your text.

Reflective Essay #3 Rubric

A: Cohesively and cogently addresses all eight of the requirements below.

B: Addresses six or seven requirements, excelling in at least one.

C: Consistently addresses five or six requirements, but may fail to incorporate sufficient examples.

D: Does not meet at least four of the requirements, and does not cohesively and adequately reflect on their work, or include examples to demonstrate development.

F: Failure to turn in the reflective essay.

OutcomeAddressedInstructor Comments
Discusses what you did well and your struggles with these two essays.Yes


Cite specific examples and changes made to your work, to illustrate how you critically thought about writing during this two essay processYes


Explain how you narrowed down your sources to four sources for the synthesis essayYes


Explain how you picked a minimum of one new source for the argumentative essayYes


Discuss both receiving and incorporating feedback from peers and meYes


Explain how your writing practices have developed an/or how this development will be used laterYes


Explain how you balanced using a minimum of five sources with your own argumentYes


Explain the differences you experienced when writing a report for the synthesis essay versus writing an argumentative essayYes



Last Updated on April 27, 2020

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