Critical writing pertains to an appropriate and balanced usage of critical thinking abilities to evaluate a text. An evaluation is a process of weighing the pros and cons of a text. It encompasses critical analysis of a text’s structure, style, and argumentation. Critical writing does not necessarily mean that you have to criticize incessantly without acknowledging the other side’s arguments. Instead, it is a dialectical approach that evaluates a text based on its merits. It identifies its flaws and weakness. But at the same time, critical writing acknowledges the strength of an argument. Therefore, every author needs to know about the dos and don’ts of critical writing to make it perfect. This article e will tell you how to use critical writing effectively.
What makes good critical writing?
Critical writing pertains to a type of writing that consults various sources and evaluates the material. The purpose of source evaluation is to formulate coherent arguments. However, many new writers of masters dissertation help firm fall into the trap of agreeing with the author completely or rejecting the text outrightly. Critical writing is not about agreeing with the author’s ideas and arguments just because they were published in a journal or a book.
On the other hand, critical writing requires you to be critical and question everything. It means that you will have to analyze the text and find the reasons for its acceptance or rejection. It requires comparing and contrasting the author’s opinions with other authors and facts. Furthermore, critical writing requires questioning the line of argumentation proposed by the author and evaluating its merits and demerits. Critical writing requires questioning the research methods used by the researcher to arrive at certain conclusions. You will have to identify the flaws in the methodology and provide solutions about what measures can be taken to improve it further. Two important things refine critical writing.
Skepticism necessitates a questioning approach towards everything and a critical mindset. In other words, you must inculcate a questioning attitude towards everything you listen to, read, or observe. It necessitates challenging everything you listen to, read, or observe. It is the first stage in refining critical writing.
The next step in refining critical writing is to analyze and evaluate everything with an objective mindset. Objectivity implies that you must have a neutral attitude towards everything and keep a strong check on your biases. Every person has biases due to social, political and cultural influences. But a writer’s job is to dissociate from these attachments and focus more on discovering the truth. Critical thinking or writing’s primary purpose is the pursuit of truth through a dialectical approach. The dialectical approach necessitates engaging with the arguments of others and identifying the strengths and weaknesses for the dissemination of knowledge.
Using Multiple Sources
You must use several viewpoints to construct your arguments when writing critically. You can’t depend on your own opinions. You also need to know what others have expressed on the same topic. Furthermore, it is not sufficient to substantiate your points with a few sources that align with your point of view. If you only rely on a few sources, this may result in prejudiced reasoning. You must analyze all aspects of the situation.
Evaluate and Analyze
You must also examine and assess data from various sources while formulating your argument. You can’t merely repeat what other authors have argued. For instance, many authors just quote or summarize the arguments of other authors in a linear manner. It lacks evaluation and analysis without digging deeper into the data. Experienced authors use multiple sources and elaborate on them to justify their points of view. Evaluation and analysis mean breaking down secondary information to ascertain the consistency of arguments. Furthermore, it requires analysis of the text and identifying the aims and objectives of the text. Based on the analysis, you will have to draw conclusions about the text by evaluating the strengths and limitations of others’ ideas.
What should you do to make your writing more critical?
You can make your writing more critical by incorporating the following key features in your writing:
- Providing substantial evidence and coherent reasoning that eventually contributes to a valid conclusion.
- Providing a coherent view that demonstrates an objective opinion by assessing both the facts that validate your perspective and the counter-arguments that may reveal an opposing point of view on the issue.
- You must not blindly accept and agree with the arguments of other authors. You must be critical of their writings and analyze their claims. You must question whether their corroborating evidence stands true. Identify if they have any prejudices and if they have acknowledged multiple viewpoints. Furthermore, evaluate how their assertions relate to the overall discourse occurring in their subject.
- Acknowledge the limitations and weaknesses of your own arguments and evidence. Inform the readers about the flaws in your study and provide recommendations for future research.
What should you not do in critical writing?
It is important to remember that critical writing is not about describing the ideas of others. Therefore, the first thing you should avoid doing is to avoid repeating what others have said. A common mistake that many authors make is repeating what others have said and using quotations from other writings excessively. Moreover, you should avoid using personal pronouns and do not start the sentences with “I think” and “I believe”. Critical writing is not about how you feel, but it is instead an exercise to evaluate and analyze the arguments of others. Another mistake that many authors make is that they think being critical means excessively criticizing the works of others. Generally, the idea is that being critical means ridiculing the works of others. However, as a scholar or a good writer, you must provide a balanced perspective and acknowledge the strengths of the writings of other authors.
Critical writing demands a balanced utilization of skepticism and objectivity. It requires evaluation and analysis, which deepens our understanding and helps formulate coherent arguments.