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Writing Reaction Papers

When you arrive at class, the first thing you see on the board is an assignment that says in big letters “essay due”. Your reaction is a big sigh, and then it’s something you have never done, a reaction paper.

On one hand, a reaction paper is just what its name would suggest. The writer composes a reaction paper to describe their take on something. Most of the time the ‘something’ is going to be another written work.

However, that is not something that is written in stone. A reaction paper can be written about works of art or other subjects. If you are in an art class or studying a humanities based subject, there is a good chance that your reaction paper will have a more relaxed format with the focus being on your emotional reaction to the subject.

On the other hand, if you are in a more structured class such as business or history, your instructor will most likely expect your paper to reflect that structure. This usually means that you will be expected to frame your reaction as a thesis and then write your reaction paper supporting that thesis statement, which will always include:

  • An Introduction
  • A body
  • A conclusion

All of your papers will include these parts, but what you will now be focusing on is the type of paper your professor is looking for, reaction.

Reaction Paper Requirements

Creating a reaction paper that will please your professor and earn a good grade is very challenging. You must thoroughly read or study your subject, take notes, and write a well-organized and structured paper describing the subject and your reaction to the subject. One of the biggest challenges you will face is making sure that your reaction is defensible after a full analysis of the subject has been performed, and this takes critical thinking skills.

Your reaction must also be debatable among your colleagues, and leave room for someone to disagree with your content. Your reaction is valid to you but may not be the end all of the discussion. A well thought out reaction paper keeps an open ended opinion so that the writer also has room to change his or her mind when the paper is critiqued.

If this is your first time doing a reaction paper and you are a freshman, this can be a daunting task to say the least. You have so much to worry about when you get to your first year in college and it can be overwhelming. In time you will realize the importance of a good schedule but for now, if you have to, get acquainted with our services and see what we can do for you. You are not alone. Here are some things to keep in mind if you decide to write your paper without help.

Usually a reaction paper is parallel to argument, and contrast/ compare papers. Your professor wants to hear what you heard from the authors point of view and what your reaction is based on. You instructor will be looking for why you reacted with a feeling: anger, sadness, surprise, or indignation. A reaction is a feeling but should be supported with a critically thought through analysis, so the passive voice has no place in your paper.

Audience Matters

You, as the writer of a reaction paper, have to take into consideration your audience, and if you have lived a somewhat sheltered life in a community that is limited in its diversity, this may be a hard task. Specific topics simply touch groups of readers differently, so you will need to consider a variety of approaches when imagining the audiences for your arguments. Consider the following:

  • Consider you own limits: If you are well read on subjects that only consider your views, when venturing into a more open academic atmosphere you will be shocked at the wide berth that lies between your views and the worlds.

Your reaction has to take into consideration the social, political, and religious issues other than your own, and you must be respectful of the fact that others come from a different premise than your own.

This is not to say write as if you have not backbone, because this will make your reaction/argument seem weak.

  • Consider race and ethnicity: The different lives people live as a result of their heritage plays a role in many claims you might make about education, politics, art, religion or even athletics. This is where you must be sensitive in your reaction without being gutless.

  • Consider Gender and sexual orientation: These issues almost always matter, often in unexpected ways. Men and women, whether straight or gay, don’t inhabit quite the same worlds. But, even so, you shouldn’t argue, either, as if all men and women think the same way—or should. False assumptions about gender can lead you into a fight you are not ready for.

  • Consider income and class: People’s lives are often defined by the realities of their economic situations—and the assumptions that follow from privilege, poverty, or something in between. When you react, you must take into consideration the people that are in the economic base you are writing too. Not everyone can afford to move out of neighborhoods that are falling apart, so to say, why do they continue living there in your paper would cause a snowstorm of unwanted comments from your readers.

  • Consider age: This is a no brainer. Writing for children as opposed to adults is a big issue when reacting. People of differing ages have lived different lives. Be mindful when your audience will include innocent minds.

Finding and Developing Materials

Once you decide to write your own paper without help, you must start gathering information. This can be challenging based on the of criteria set by your professor, magazine editor or blog post; keep in mind the following:

  1. Space- make sure that you read your requirements for the project before you start gathering research. Research can pile up to the point that you are writing a novel and are only supposed to be submitting 5-10 pages of content. Is your content a letter size, column size, and what number count are you required to do? During this process of space limits keep in touch with you professor or editor to see if more or less can be used.
  2. Reasons to support why you are reacting the way you are- as you gather supporting reasons to your reactions, make sure you are paraphrasing those quotes that support your side of the argument, or making sure that you are listing where you got the information for your works cited page.
  3. Summarize your content- You may be required to do a summary of your research as you proceed with the paper. We suggest that you keep a well-organized notebook made specifically for this purpose. Notes can easily be mislaid and work lost in the shuffle.
  4. Read, read, and re-read the text- We know that this can be time consuming but your reaction to the source page is not the only things that matters in this paper. This is a paper that you must analyze implied ideas, elaborate on what you think you read and why you feel the way you do about the authors words, or artist’s rendering.
  5. Contrast and Compare- if you are writing about multiple sources, the relationship to the sources must be analyzed and thought through from the sources point of view and then your own. Carefully outline a list of comparisons before writing the paper when developing a project from more than one source.

Reaction Paper Assistance

Now that you know what it takes to write a reaction paper, do you have the time to dedicate to this assignment. If the answer is no, we can help you by writing this assignment for you or with you. The earlier you make the decision to hire an online writing crew such as Ghost Professors the better. We want to have time to develop the best possible project, and if you are under time constraints, the sooner you send in your information, the better the outcome of your project.

Here at Ghost Professors, our goal is not to do your work for you, but to give you a hand across the internet that is available when you are bogged down with too work to do at the moment. We understand that college and business can get to be overwhelming. Many of our students utilize the structured and well-formed paragraphs that we send back, not as the paper that they turn in, but as a tool to show them how it is done.

Although our work is custom to the needs of each student and can very well be handed in without fear of a plagiarized product, students find that after getting their papers back, it does good to tweak them with their own voice also, remember, your professors know your work, so take the time to go over our submission to you and use it to the best of your advantage to get the best grade possible.

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