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★Scottish Independence-Discursive Essay

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    Scottish Independence-Discursive Essay

    Extracts from this document…

    Introduction

    Scottish Independence – Good or Bad Scotland is at a turning point. The 300-year old Union is some say no longer fit for purpose. Some say it was never designed for the 21st century world and it is well past it’s sell by date and is holding Scotland back. The Scottish people voted to move forward, with a new, more Scottish approach from an SNP government. But many oppose these views saying that Scotland needs the rest of the UK and that the economic and social problems caused by independence would be catastrophic to the relationships between Scotland and the rest of the UK. In any case the government has published a white paper setting out a vision of independence and responsibility in the modern world. But is this idea beneficial to our country? Is Scotland ready to go it alone? Is Scotland ready to break free from the shackles of the UK? Are the Scottish people ready for independence? In this essay I will explore our options and inevitably present the information needed to make your own conclusion on Scottish independence. There are strong arguments both for and against independence. The arguments for Scottish independence are described in the next few paragraphs. …read more.

    Middle

    With independence, Scotland could join this arc of prosperity. Scotland could pursue economic policies designed specifically for our circumstances, to give us a stronger economy, better public services and a fairer society. Furthermore and probably the SNP’s biggest drive for independence is through their old motto "It’s Scotland Oil". This motto refers to the oil in the North Sea and it is said that although 90% of the North Sea Oil comes from the Scottish Sector of the continental shelf the revenue created by the selling of this oil would not benefit Scotland while it remained as part of the United Kingdom. The Continental Shelf Act 1964 and the Continental Shelf (Jurisdiction) Order 1968 defines the UK North Sea maritime area to the north of latitude 55 degrees north as being under the jurisdiction of Scots Law meaning that 90% of the UK’s oil resources were under Scottish jurisdiction,therefore proving the SNP are correct in the claim that the North Sea Oil is in fact Scotland’s Oil. On the other hand there is a substantial amount of claims and information produced by the Labour Party that clearly shows Scotland would not be able to go it alone. Labour firstly argues that the division of the UK would lead to colossal problems. …read more.

    Conclusion

    Fourthly and finally for the against independence argument is that if Scotland was to gain independence form the UK, Northern Ireland and Wales may follow suit to gain the benefits that Scotland would becoming independent. This would lead the UK to become four divided nations with different Passports, possibly currency, rules, legislation and most importantly armies. The division of the UK would also take the power and prestige of the Queen’s position and discard it, as there would have to be different rulers for each country; this is hardly going to be accepted by the Monarchy supporters. In conclusion, there are strong cases both for and against Scotland gaining it’s independence from the rest of the United Kingdom, both sides have pros and cons but most importantly both sides of the argument have their supporters and at the end of the day that is what it will all come down to when a referendum inevitably is brought up. Scotland has its own parliament so why can’t they have full separation. The north seas oil in terms of longitude and latitude belongs to Scotland so it really needs independence to reap the benefits of the sought after fossil fuel. So with this information I have divulged to you make your own decision. Scottish independence. Yes Or No? Sources http://www.snp.org/independence http://www.scottishlabour.org.uk/home http://www.bbc.co.uk/dna/actionnetwork/A17359158 http://www.scottish.parliament.uk/business/index.htm TV Program Holyrood Live Kieran Tennant Higher Essay …read more.

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      • Friday, December 22nd, 2017

        Christmas Celebration 2017 – Primary Wing

        Celebrating Christmas through Nativity Play

      • Christmas Carnival 2017 (21)
      • Monday, December 18th, 2017

        Christmas Carnival 2017

        Christmas Carnival   at Scottish High, Temperatures touched the chilly Fahrenheit’ of what we call the ‘full swing ‘of winters in Gurugram. However, the heat was on at Scottish High International School with its Christmas Carnival setting the tone of the season and its festivities. This year too, the Carnival began with a bang, drawing a […]

      • FDP Nursery (7)
      • Friday, December 8th, 2017

        Front Desk Programme – Nursery Wing

      • Sports day 2017 - primary wings (3)
      • Wednesday, December 6th, 2017

        Sports Day at Scottish High – Primary Wing

      • Chinmaya Bhagwad Gita Chanting Competition 2017 (1)
      • Monday, December 4th, 2017

        Highlanders made us proud by win – Chinmaya Bhagwad Gita Chanting Competition 2017

      • Thursday, November 30th, 2017

        IBDP Orientation Session 2018-20

        Dear, Parents The School management and the IBDP department welcomes you to an orientation programme for the IB enrollment.This is a short workshop to help you understand the nuances of IB and its advantages in seeking admission to prestigious universities and courses across the globe as well in India.We look forward to an interactive session […]

      • Scottish High’s under 10 girls Basketball team win the 23rd Ramjas Basketball Champions league (1)
      • Thursday, November 30th, 2017

        Scottish High’s under 10 girls Basketball team lifting the PRESTIGIOUS WINNERS TROPHY

        It was a notable moment for Scottish High’s under 10 girls Basketball team lifting the PRESTIGIOUS WINNERS TROPHY as they emerged victorious after defeating their arch rivals Shri Ram Aravali in the finals of the 23rd Ramjas Basketball Champions league held at New Delhi.

      • Self Study (1)
      • Saturday, November 25th, 2017

        IBYP self-study workshop for the parents – PYP

        IBPYP self study for parent conducted by PYP coordinator

      • story telling by Zenny Jhelumi
      • Friday, November 24th, 2017

        Story session taken by famous authors – Piotr Karski and Zenny Jhelumi – for grade 1  2

        Promoting international mindedness- Interactive storytelling session was taken by Piotr Karski author from the Poland and Zenny Jhelumi for grade 1 & 2

      • Additional Maths India topper award
      • Thursday, November 23rd, 2017

        Highlanders earn the ” Additional Maths India Topper Award ” by Cambridge International examination

        Jibitesh Saha of class X Igcse has made the school proud by securing the Additional Maths India topper award by Cambridge International Examination.  

      • Annual Day Celebrations 2017 (32)
      • Monday, November 20th, 2017

        Re Viva – The Annual Day Celebrations 2017

        The Highlanders once again enthralled the audience with their spellbinding stagecraft at the Annual Day Celebrations on 18th November 2017

      • Initials Sports Day (1)
      • Thursday, November 16th, 2017

        Initials Sports Day

      • Highlanders participated in All India Open Tennis Fiesta 2017
      • Thursday, November 9th, 2017

        Highlanders participated in All India Open Tennis Fiesta 2017

        Highlanders participated in All India Open Tennis Fiesta 2017. Praneet Kapoor was Runners-up in U-6 boys, Tripty Maheswari was Runners-up in U-10 girls and Aman Patel was 2nd Runners-up in U-8 boys

      • A bunch of laurels bagged by Highlanders
      • Monday, November 6th, 2017

        A bunch of laurels bagged by Highlanders

        Our Highlanders have won awards at ARMUN’17 Varin of XI represented as Executive Board member and designated as NSA Shivank of XI won Best Del award in AIPPM Aaliya of VIII won 1st high comm in AIPPM  Jei Sridhar of XI got high comm award in AIPPM Dhanvi & Ayra of XI received special mention […]

      • Street Play Competition in tGELF Harmony 2017
      • Monday, October 30th, 2017

        Highlanders earn the First Position in the Street Play Competition in tGELF Harmony 2017 and Best Speaker in the Debate competition

      • Food Expedition at Scottish High (7)
      • Friday, October 27th, 2017

        Food Expedition at Scottish High

        To give students a palate to explore the world of taste and nutrition, food expedition was held at Scottish High

      • Scottish High Earn- Time Shriver certificate-Unified Champion School -
      • Monday, October 16th, 2017

        Scottish High Awarded “Unified Champion School” Special Olympics

      • diwali mela (4)
      • Saturday, October 7th, 2017

        Diwali Mela 2017

        Diwali Mela at Scottish High

      • A psychology session on interdisciplinary - Expert Talk- by Alexandra Snee (1)
      • Thursday, October 5th, 2017

        A psychology session on interdisciplinary – Expert Talk- by Alexandra Snee

        Alexandra Snee visited Scottish high to deliver an expert talk on one of the topics in Psychology – Obedience. The audience was grade 11 and 12 IBDP students studying ESS, BM, Eco, Political Science and faculty members. ISC Psychology students of grade 12 were also included. This was also an interdisciplinary talk keeping in mind […]

      • Hong Kong University
      • Wednesday, October 4th, 2017

        Message from Prof John Spinks, Director- The University of Hong Kong” for Shivang – Earn the title of “President’s Scholar”

         

      • Dussehra Celebrations pic 1
      • Friday, September 29th, 2017

        Dussehra Celebrations at Scottish High

      • Rally for Rivers by Grade 5 (2)
      • Wednesday, September 27th, 2017

        Rally For Rivers – Grade v

      • Social Science Exhibition 2017
      • Saturday, September 23rd, 2017

        Social Science Exhibition 2017

        This year’s Social Science Exhibition 2017 was based on the theme of ‘Eternal Ganga’ as a means to pay homage to the holy river that purifies all evil, and to celebrate the river being accorded as a “human entity”. The exhibition was held in the school auditorium and consisted of a plethora of models and […]

      • Highlanders Secured 3rd Position in SGFI State Tennis Tournament
      • Wednesday, September 20th, 2017

        Highlanders Secured 3rd Position in SGFI State Tennis Tournament

        Agriya yadav and Kaushal Thakran have secured 3rd position in the SGFI State Tennis Tournament

      • logo
      • Sunday, September 10th, 2017

        “School Director’s Awareness Series – Security Concerns”

        Director’s Awareness Series Dear parents, Last few days have been harrowing for the education fraternity. On one hand, we have seen the demon of bullying raising its ugly head and on the other the most gruesome end to a very young life, that too in the environs of a school that is and should be […]

      • SGFI State Chess Championship.
      • Wednesday, September 6th, 2017

        SGFI State Chess Championship Selection

        Armin Kaur (III) and Kaustabh Kaushal(XI) participated in the SGFI District Chess Championship and have been selected for the SGFI State Chess Championship.

      • Print
      • Sunday, September 3rd, 2017

        Scottish High win the Roller Skating Championship

        03 September 2017  

      • EXAM Reschedule
      • Monday, August 28th, 2017

        Reschedule of 28th August Exam

      • IMG_9081
      • Thursday, August 24th, 2017

        Youth Leaders’ Summit 2017 – Ms. Mary Davis visits (CEO Special Olympics International)

      • debate
      • Monday, August 21st, 2017

        Best Team Award at Stage II of Frank Anthony Debate Competition

        Simran Kakar & Yoshita Singh have made us proud by winning the Best Team Award at Stage II of Frank Anthony Debate Competition & qualified for the All India Finals. Simran Kakar has been adjudged as the Best Speaker

      • cricket
      • Monday, August 21st, 2017

        SHIS under 17 cricket team

        SHIS under 17 cricket team has brought laurels by winning the School District Cricket Championship.

      • The 71st Independence Day
      • Wednesday, August 16th, 2017

        The 71st Independence Day

        A historical moment for us as ‘Free Nation’, when India woke under the beautiful sky of liberty and freedom. Scottish High, keeping the spirit of this great nation, salutes yet another milestone of Independence and unites once again to commemorate this glorious day- The 71st Independence Day– reminiscing the heroism and sacrifice of our patriots.

      • SHISMUN17 Second Edition
      • Saturday, August 5th, 2017

        SHISMUN’17 Second Edition

        SHISMUN’17 embodies the educational simulation of the United Nations.

      • SUDHA-GOYAL
      • Friday, August 4th, 2017

        School Director’s Awareness Series no. 06

        Dear Parents, The emotional well being of our children has always been our top priority at Scottish High International School. We are deeply concerned with the latest news regarding few online games and the effect it has had on the lives of many children across the globe. As important stakeholders to our children, it is […]

      • FDP (2)
      • Tuesday, August 1st, 2017

        Front Desk Programme – Primary Wing

      • Primary Gallery Walk (2)
      • Saturday, July 29th, 2017

        Gallery Walk – Primary Wing

      • slcinitial17 (5)
      • Saturday, July 22nd, 2017

        Gallery Walk – Initials

        Taking ownership of their learning, the Highlanders of Early Years of The Scottish High International School, Gurugram, participated in the Gallery Walk on 22nd July, 2017 with full enthusiasm. They took upon themselves to show their class, the different corners and the work displayed on the boards to their parents, surprising them with their communication […]

      • Scienceexh2017 (2)
      • Saturday, July 22nd, 2017

        Scientia Techno Palooza – Science Exhibition 2017

        Science takes a leap beyond books as Annual Science Exhibition “Scientia Techno Palooza“makes a touch down at Scottish High International School on 22nd July 2017. At Scottish High, Science is more than a syllabus as the young enthusiastic Highlanders took it to mammoth proportions by showcasing 65 participatory exhibits, constituting various innovative working models and […]

      • Nukaad Natak Kinderact (1)
      • Thursday, June 22nd, 2017

        Nukkad Natak connecting with the community – Primary Wing

        A Nukkad Natak perfomed at Galleria Market on the consumer right.  

      • 20-21June 2017 (3)
      • Wednesday, June 21st, 2017

        Workshop for teachers PYP-IB

      • shivang keetana
      • Thursday, June 1st, 2017

        Highlanders Scorch National  NCR Toppers’ List in ISC 2017

        Scottish High Flag flutters high with the Proud Highlanders Keerthana Srikanth ranked ALL INDIA SECOND POSITION HOLDER and DELHI NCR TOPPER with an astounding 397/400 i.e. 99.25% and Shivang Singh being ranked SECOND TOPPER IN DELHI NCR with395/400 i.e. 98.75%. The two Highlanders scored a Perfect 100% in Physics, Economics, ICT & Mathematics, respectively. The […]

      • University_of_Cambridge_coat_of_arms_official.svg
      • Friday, May 19th, 2017

        IGCSE Results 2016-17

        The highlanders have again made us proud by scoring perfect scores in IGCSE results 2017. Jibitesh Saha and Srijan Saxena have scored prefect 7*. Total A*and A : 98. Congratulations to all the achievers.

      • Ranveer Singh Saini won Gold at Special Olympics Golf Masters 2017
      • Saturday, April 29th, 2017

        Highlander Ranveer Singh Saini won Gold at Special Olympics Golf Masters 2017

        Ranveer Saini participated in the Special Olympics Golf Masters – 2017 tournament held from 16 April to 22 April 2017 at Macau. Over 100 golfers competed from across the world including USA, UK, Finland, Australia, South Korea, HongKong, Sweden, South Africa among others. He played 2 rounds of Golf in a 36 hole tournament at […]

      • library week (1)
      • Tuesday, March 28th, 2017

        Library Week 2017 – Primary Wing

        Students participated in many learning engagement.

      • orientation
      • Monday, March 27th, 2017

        AT HOME” Orientation 2017-18 – Tuesday 28th March’17

        AT HOME” Orientation 2017-18 for Initial School & Primary School – Tuesday 28th March’17 Initials Orientation Presentation  – Click here to download A Ready Reckoner for the parents of Initial Chapter – Click here to download Primary Orientation Presentation – Click here to download  

      • 5A 24
      • Monday, March 27th, 2017

        Graduation Ceremony- Grade V

      • world down syndrome day 2017 (6)
      • Tuesday, March 21st, 2017

        World Down Syndrome day Celebration 2017

      • SAIBSA (South Asia International Baccalaureate School Association) at Scottish High (5)
      • Sunday, March 5th, 2017

        SAIBSA (South Asia International Baccalaureate School Association) at Scottish High

        SAIBSA held at Scottish High to share the best practices among the educators all over India

      • DSC00823
      • Monday, February 20th, 2017

        The BHIM AWARD, has been confered to our student Ranveer Singh Saini

        It is a proud moment for Scottish High that the Highest Sports Award of the State, the BHIM AWARD,  has been confered to our student Ranveer Singh Saini  by the Hon’ble Governor of Haryana today.

      • Blooddona2017 (4)
      • Tuesday, February 14th, 2017

        Blood Donation Camp – PYP

      • A Choice Of IGCSE
      • Tuesday, December 27th, 2016

        Circular – A choice of IGCSE (Cambridge Secondary 1) Curriculum

        Dear Parents, You will be glad to know that in the coming session 2017-18 onwards we shall provide our dear students with one more option of curriculum choice in the middle years. After graduating from class V, students will now have a choice of IGCSE (Cambridge Secondary 1) curriculum or the current ICSE curriculum from […]

      • Cambridge Secondary 1 - Orientation 3
      • Monday, December 26th, 2016

        Cambridge Secondary 1 – Orientation

        An Orientation for the parents of grade V was conducted on Dec 24, 2016 with the aim of making the parents familiar with the Cambridge Secondary 1 Curriculum and also with the changes, the child will go through during the transition from Primary Years to Middle School. Cambridge Secondary 1 – Orientation PPT  – Click here to […]

      • KINDERACT CLUB (11)
      • Friday, December 9th, 2016

        Kinderact Club Live Healthy Breathe Healthy Marathon

      • Haryana Swarna Jyanti launch at Tau Devi Lal stadium
      • Tuesday, November 1st, 2016

        Haryana Swarna Jyanti launch at Tau Devi Lal stadium

        Ranveer Saini was felicitated along with other Olympians Ms. Sakshi Malik , Mr. Vijender Singh and Ms. Deepa malik in the Prime Minister’s function of Haryana Swarn Jyanti launch at Tau Devi Lal stadium on November 01, 2016.

      • International Robotronics Competition
      • Wednesday, October 19th, 2016

        International Robotronics Competition School League

        Our Junior Robotics teams have won 1st & 2nd Team Prize in International Robotronics Competition School League held at Lotus Valley international School.

      • Topper IGCSE Combined Sciences
      • Wednesday, October 19th, 2016

        Topper IGCSE Combined Sciences

        Keisha Mathews of SHIS has topped the country in IGCSE Combined Sciences.

      • Haryana Equestrian Sports Association Event
      • Wednesday, October 19th, 2016

        Haryana Equestrian Sports Association Event

        Ranvijay Saini of grade three won 2 gold and a bronze medal, while Nripesh Mehlawat of grade nine won 3 gold medals in three respective events organised by Haryana Equestrian Sports Association.

      • swimming-championship
      • Wednesday, October 12th, 2016

        Won Medals in Pathways Invitational Swimming Championship

        Highlanders have won 3 silver and 10 bronze in the Pathways Invitational Swimming Championship.

      • Inter School Tennis Championship
      • Saturday, October 8th, 2016

        Won Pathways Inter School Tennis Championship

        Primary highlanders have made us proud by winning the Pathways Inter School Tennis Championship in both boys and girls under 10 age category.

      • Gold Medal In Haryana State Shooting Championship
      • Friday, October 7th, 2016

        Gold Medal in Haryana State Shooting Championship

        Rakshit Jaiswal has won 1 gold and I silver in Haryana state shooting championship.

      • Interschool Swimming Competition For Primary
      • Saturday, October 1st, 2016

        Interschool Swimming Competition for Primary

        Our highlanders won 11 Gold, 9 Silver and 17 Bronze medals in Interschool Swimming competition for Primary held at GD Goenka World School.

      • IMG-20160904-WA0001 comp
      • Monday, September 5th, 2016

        Haryana State Soccer Team has won the National Championship of SSPF  Sports Authority of India

        Haryana State Soccer Team has won the National Championship of SSPF & Sports Authority of India. The State team comprised of TEN champion Highlanders who got this glory to the State. Congratulations to the players and coaches.The names of the players are as follows – Varin Agarwal, Ishaan Yadav, Aryan Dhoot, Samridh Anand, Sunny Singh, […]

      • SHIS Won Inter School Basketball Girls Tournament
      • Saturday, August 27th, 2016

        SHIS won Inter School Basketball Girls Tournament

        Under 10 team of SHIS has won the Inter School Basketball Girls Tournament for Primary section conducted by DPS International, Gurgaon. Arushi Bist was declared best defender.

      • Boys Under 17 School District Tennis Championship
      • Friday, August 26th, 2016

        Boys Under 17 School District Tennis Championship

        Highlanders Samarth, Nischay, Tarang and Yugansh have won the Second position in the Under 17 School District Tennis Championship.

      • Friday, August 26th, 2016

        Boys – Under 14 School District Tennis Championship

        Highlanders Agriya Yadav, Kabir Singh, Saman Jain, Kaushal and Rahul Dang have secured the Second position in the Under 14 School District Tennis Championship.

      • Friday, August 26th, 2016

        Under 19 – Girls School District Tennis Championship

        Highlanders Mahika Rathod, Diya Shukla and Khyati M Srivastava have made us proud by winning First position in the Under 19 Girls School District Tennis Championship and will now play at State level.

      • 5
      • Friday, August 5th, 2016

        Young Indian Sports Star Award 2016

        Ranveer Saini has been felicitated with the Indian Achievers Award by Prime Minister Lal Bahadur Shashtri’s son Mr. Sunil Shashtri and Mr Antony Member of Parliament at India Habitat Centre.

      • School District Cricket Competition
      • Friday, August 5th, 2016

        School District Cricket Competition

        Scottish High under 14 school cricket team has made us proud by winning the School District Cricket Competition and has also qualified for the State Championship.

      • School District Soccer Championship
      • Friday, August 5th, 2016

        School District Soccer Championship

        Scottish High under 14, under 17 and under 19 soccer teams have won the school district soccer championship in all the three categories and have qualified for the state championship.

      • Friday, August 5th, 2016

        IIMUN Conference

        Scottish High has won the best delegation award at the IIMUN Conference held at Suncity World School. Akriti Gupta, Parwaz Gill & Gayatri Kashyap were declared the best delegates.

      • All India Frank Anthony Debate Competition 2016 -
      • Friday, July 15th, 2016

        All India Frank Anthony Debate Competition 2016

        Our highlanders Shivang Singh & Vitasta Singh have won the prestigious All India Frank Anthony Debate Competition regional round in Category 1 and in Category 2, Niharika Mehrotra has been adjudged first runners up speaker. Both teams qualify for second round.

      • Monday, July 4th, 2016

        IRC Open League’16

        IRC Open League’16 – Team1-Arnav, Maanas and Shiven of grade VII won 1st position and sponsored trip for China and team 2 – Nirbhay,Harshit and Vaibhav of grade VII won 3rd position.

      • Tuesday, June 28th, 2016

        India Finals of Compudon Season

        Srijan Saxena of X IGCSE has secured Second Position in India Finals of Compudon Season VI. He was awarded a Laptop, Certificate and Medal for the same.

      • Tuesday, April 26th, 2016

        Initial School Orientation 2016

        Ready Reckoner 2016 Initials At Home session 2016-17

      • Tuesday, April 26th, 2016

        Primary School Orientation 2016

        Primary Parent Orientation for session 2016-17

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    ★Psychology: Essay on Psychology

    Is Psychology a Science? Essay

    1133 Words
    5 Pages

    The British Psychological Society states that ‘Psychology is the scientific study of people, the mind and behaviour’ (BPS). In this essay I will be discussing what is actually meant by this and whether psychology fits into both the traditional views of a science, as well as more contemporary perspectives. It is widely suggested that Psychology is a “coalition of specialities” meaning it is multi-disciplinary (Hewstone, Fincham and Foster 2005, page 4). I will therefore examine whether it could be considered wrong to think that all parts of the discipline should neatly fit into one view of a scientific approach. In order to be considered a science, Psychology must consequently adhere to using a scientific method. If this were, as usual,

    …show more content…

    Studies such as the afore mentioned Milgram study showed that what may appear to be the most expected outcome may, in truth, be very different. I would also go on to argue that in actuality all sciences are some adaptation of common sense (Oppenheimer, 1956), leaving Psychology in this way, no different to any of the others. Ben Goldacre even argues that particular forms of science, such as neuroscience, regularly offer empirically incorrect research in reputable journals, claiming statistically significant results without the appropriate statistical tests (Guardian). Furthermore, there are three main aspects which were customarily associated with a science: metaphysical, theoretical and methodological assumptions. Under metaphysical it is believed that to gain scientific status requires the certainty that the subject matter i.e. human thought/ behaviour, is similar to that of other accepted sciences. This could then be true for Psychology, as particularly since Darwin’s suggestion of a continuity between behaviours of humans and other species, behaviour has become more scrutinised. However, this must be assumed in respect of determinism, suggesting predictions could be made. ‘Heisenbergs uncertainty principle’ suggests that when relating evidence of indeterminism within the universe to human behaviour, it proves ambiguous, and with parts of the discipline believing strongly in free will it seems difficult to establish a common ground (Valentine E.R. page 2).

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    Writing an argumentative essay can sometimes be confusing because you don’t necessarily know how to write a convincing argument. If you’re new to writing argumentative essays, there are a few key factors that you can learn that can help you write a better argumentative essay. Argumentative essays are where you try and convince your reader to take a specific stance on a topic. This can range from politics, debates, news, and many other topics.

    A persuasive, argumentative essay will use credible sources to find facts, information, and statistics that help support that specific stance. If you load your essay full of credible sources, you’re only further going to convince your audience that taking your stance is the best stance. To write an excellent argumentative essay, there are four major parts of the essay you’re going to need to be aware of. Keep reading, and we’ll teach you how to come up with a great argumentative essay by argumentative essay examples.

    What is an Argumentative Essay?

    In an argumentative essay, you’re going to want to convince your audience to agree with your idea or opinion by using credible information. Writing an argument essay can help you better understand how to present an argument and how to persuade your readers to be on your side. Learning how to write an argumentative essay can help you in many other aspects of life, so make sure you pay close attention to what you’ll need for a convincing argument. You first need to select a solid topic with an argument, credible information to support your viewpoint, a solid stance on your side, and an excellent counter-argument to help you sound less biased.

    Argument

    Argumentative essays should use a topic in which you can persuade an audience to agree with your side. If you’re a student, consider using a topic that is interesting to other students or your professor. Many argumentative topics come from politics, the news, or ethics. Don’t choose a topic that you can’t write a two-sided story on. Every argumentative argument should include either two or more sides. The easier arguments use at least two arguments and no more than three or four arguments at once. The more stances an argument has, the harder it will be to convince your readers that your stance is the best stance. Our examples of argumentative essay can help you understand what topics are appropriate.

    Your Stance

    Every argumentative essay includes persuading an audience into believing one side of an argument. You need to make sure that you stay on that one side during your entire essay. It may be tempting to agree with the opposing side, but that will only cause your audience to be less convinced about your stance. The whole point of an argumentative essay is to persuade the reader into agreeing with the side you support. Therefore, you need to use research to back up your viewpoint consistently. The only thing you need to keep an eye out for is sticking with one side of an argument that doesn’t have enough credible information to help back up your claims. Check out our argumentative essay example to properly understand how to stay on one side of an argument.

    Evidence

    Your essay should include recent statistics and information from reliable sources. Many students make the mistake of including personal viewpoints and opinions in their essays. This only weakens your argument and drives your readers away from your stance. To avoid this situation, only use information that you know is from a reliable source. Your teacher should provide you with a list of acceptable sources or if your sources need to be from empirical studies. Always double check your facts and make sure that they are the most recent. Using too old of facts may cause your argument to weaken.

    Counter Argument

    Another final component is being able to draw out the pros and cons of the opposition and disprove their argument. In this area of your paper, you can agree with your opponent temporarily to exploit any reasoning that does not work in their favor. This also shows you’ve taken into consideration the opponents views and examined the possible outcomes. By embodying both sides of the argument, you further solidify your position and make it seem like there is another ultimate conclusion.

    Conclusion

    A conclusion can be included in the counter-argument, but it is better to allocate two separate paragraphs for them. A sound finale will have your essay summarize quickly and powerfully. Appealing to emotion, using statistics and facts will help refresh your reader’s memory and convince them to take up your position. The last few sentences should be extremely clear and have a lasting image on your audience. Always make sure that you end your paper reinstating your side of the argument and why people should join.

    Two Examples of Argumentative Essays

    Writing a persuasive, argumentative essay can be complicated, and sometimes it can get a little confusing. To write an excellent argumentative essay, you’re going to have to practice rewriting your essay to help eliminate useless facts. Remember to not confuse an argumentative essay with a persuasive essay. Argumentative essays need to use facts to help back up your side of the argument, instead of just making different claims. To help you learn how to write an argumentative essay, we’ve listed some argumentative essay examples to help you. They are listed below.

    Argumentative Essay Example #1

    Students Should Use Smart Phones in School

    Technology has become so advanced that your smartphone is essential a working computer. Students are starting to be encouraged to use technology such as laptops, computers, and ipads during class. Many parents don’t want their kids to use technology during class because they feel like their child wouldn’t use the smartphones for learning purposes, but instead use them to send text messages, play games, and stay plugged into social media outlets. The question we’re trying to cover in this essay is whether students should be allowed to use smart phones in their schools.

    Students are already encouraged to use other sources of technology in class such as laptops and ipads to help increase their learning. Many teachers are already using projectors which are linked to laptops and demonstrate how to complete an assignment. If you’re in higher education such as college, you’re allowed to use your smartphone in class to complete any work or take notes. But, when you’re in high school, you’re not allowed to use your smartphones during class. If you can use smartphones in college, you should be able to use smartphones in high school and middle school. There need to be set rules on what you can do while using your smartphone.

    We believe that smartphones could help bring more learning to every classroom. Using smartphones in school can help students have instant access to information related to their classes. During classes teachers no longer have to use their projector or have to make print outs on information. They could share a google document with the students, and the students can access it from their phone. All of the daily’s information will be saved on there, giving students instant and continuous access to everything they learned that day.

    In classes, many students use their phones to take pictures of lectures, powerpoints and record the lecture. The issue is that taking pictures and videos require special permission from your professor. College students take pictures of lectures and then also record the class. This can help them later when they need to study information. Now, one thing we do have to consider is that college classes have students who need to pass the class, while in high school it’s more of choice. So the motivation for using smartphones in high school and college is both different.

    Many parents and staff members disagree that the use of smartphones would help their classrooms. And while we get where they are coming from, that still doesn’t mean that students shouldn’t be allowed to use their smartphones in class. For example, smartphones can be used as calculators and can help anyone who is taking a math class. Regular calculators cost a lot of money for a student to use, therefore using their phone is easier and more effective. Not only that but students will be able to access their online courses and be able to follow the lecture through powerpoints. Lastly, students can also take pictures of powerpoint slides and take notes by using their phones. This would make it much easier than having them learn how to take notes.

    With the advancements in technology, we believe that smartphones should be used in classrooms. They offer students and teacher instant access to any and all information. Of course, they can’t be used during testing, quizzes, or other activities that could be considered cheating. Therefore, they should only be used during the lecture. It would make taking notes in class a brass, and for those students who want to ace the class, they would be able to access the lecture if they recorded it at a later time and review materials.

    Argumentative Essay Example #2

    Can Smoking be Prevented by Making Tobacco Illegal

    Tobacco is the main ingredient that you find in cigars, cigarettes, and as a chew. It’s no secret that tobacco has finally been linked to being a bad drug which wreaks havoc on the body. Not only does it contribute to lung failure, but it also has a negative effect on the liver and brain. Many people still choose to smoke even though they have been told that it’s bad for them. Would choose to ban tobacco and make it illegal prevent people from smoking? Would making tobacco-related products illegal even help the smoking population? Would it stop younger people from deciding to smoke?

    The issue is that there are so many people who are still smoking. The goal is to end up getting fewer people to smoke. By banning tobacco and tobacco-related products, the hope is that fewer people will be able to smoke and gain access to them. Cigarettes are stocked in every single store you go to. From convenience stores, gas stations, and even supermarkets. You can find cigarettes online, and also buy them through designated cigarette shops. You can find them everywhere and anywhere. Many cigarette packets don’t come cheap, and an estimate millions of dollars are spent on people buying cigarettes or tobacco related products every single day.

    Our stance on this issue is that by making tobacco, illegal people will still find a way to get it and smoke it. Just because there is a continuous ban on a product doesn’t mean that it can help the people who already know what using cigarettes is like. You have to think about all the people who would need to get into rehabilitation clinics because of withdrawal effects from tobacco. If a massive user does not get enough, they could end up going into withdrawal and even death if their body decides to give up. The ban on illegal substances would only end up hurting the population who needs the drug to slowly come off of it.

    Tobacco is used in many other drugs and can be either consumed by chewing or be in the form of cigars or cigarettes. It has been shown that tobacco has adverse effects on the skin, lungs, liver, and kidney. It also damages your brain cells and can cause you to have lung problems. If you want to avoid respiratory failure, you may want to consider stopping smoking tobacco. Any drug that has this many adverse effects should not be consumed on a regular basis. Some populations smoke more than one cigarette a day, and sometimes the extreme cases smoke up to a pack or two a day.

    Think about a very similar incident that happened almost a century ago. The ban on alcohol did not end up stopping people from drinking alcohol. Instead, it may have even boosted illegal activity because so many speakers started to show up. People ended up finding other sources to get their hands on alcohol. If we were to place a ban on tobacco, then people would still find out a way to produce them illegally. We already have enough drug wars going on; we don’t need another just because the US decides to ban tobacco.

    As you can see, banning tobacco will not stop individuals from deciding to smoke. People will end up doing whatever they want even if the drug gets banned. Reducing smoking can be done through education, as smoking is not something you want to advocate for. To prevent smoking educate people on the adverse effects of tobacco and make it clear that just starting to smoke can end up giving you lifetime problems. You can’t control anyone’s opinion, and everyone is entitled to make their own choices, even when it comes to smoking. So, tobacco should not be banned or made illegal.

    Conclusion

    An excellent argument will use credible sources that help back up its claim. Always fact checks your argument and avoids using or making false or fake claims just to make your argument seem like the better side. Good argumentative essays not only provide facts to support the body of the argument and support your viewpoint but also use facts to help refute the opposing side of the argument. This can help convince your reader to stick with your side over the other. Choose from popular topics that people are passionate about. Never choose a topic that lacks research or evidence, as this leads to a weak argument overall. Hopefully, our argumentative essay example helped demonstrate how to write an argumentative essay.

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    ★How to Write a Critical Essay at a Glance

    S.Flores/Advice on Critical Essays

    For a usefully concise version of this advice, see this highlighted weblink. Note: the advice below uses examples from writing about Shakespeare but the general principles apply to any literary text and its contexts.

    The primary aims of a thesis-seeking/problem-posing exploratory essay assignment is to engage with
    the text (literary text, typically, or film) and its critical interpretation/reception by identifying problems,
    developing claims and arguments, and enriching your literary understanding,
    interests, and commitments. Use/learn Modern Language Association format for
    any notes or works cited (see, for instance, link to MLA format guidelines further below, and see the other resources and examples that I provide in the Bblearn folder on Advice for Writing, those include samples of strong student essays and an full example of developing a research essay (on Austen’s novel Mansfield Park).

    A first step, basic approach is to ask to what extent the text presents a question or problem that seems challenging to represent and to resolve (solve/answer) without being caught up in some kind of conflict or contradiction–typically these include conflicts/contradictions between a culturally/historically predominant way of valuing or understanding particular identities and relationships versus alternative (perhaps dissenting/oppositional/other) perspectives and arrangements. The text then explores and discloses a debate over how to understand its world via such conflicting desires (including desires for power, for stability or for transgressive change)–a debate over ‘systems’ of belief, over ideology. And (therefore) an ideological debate over what characters and the reader/audience should do and be (including, typically, a debate over what literature should do and be).

     

    In Shakespeare’s The Merchant of Venice, for instance, the predominant patriarchal ideology supports/directs that the daughter (Portia) submit to the will of her father, yet the play seems to support the disobedient actions of a daughter (Jessica) who rebels against her father (Shylock), and one might argue that even Portia is supported in her cross-dressing actions as the young lawyer Balthazar. Why? How so? A cultural analysis of this problem could begin with the critical-theoretical premise (see Stephen Greenblatt’s essay on "Culture") that meanings and identities and relationships can be understood within a particular cultural-historical context as engaging with specific ratios between mobility and constraint–that is, terms/identities have a range of mobility to move across a range of meanings and yet face culturally coded/enforced limits or constraints upon, for instance, what a daughter is permitted to say or to do. The relation or ratio between degrees of mobility and constraint are determined by a principle of exchange–in the case/example above, the dominant Christian culture in Venice supports Jessica’s transgressive rebellion against her Jewish father, because she offers the culture something in exchange (she is paying for her mobility): she robs and flees Shylock in order to marry the Christian Lorenzo. Shylock can save his life and some of his property by converting to Christianity.

     

    Another way to identify a problem is when interpretations differ and the difference constitutes an implied/explicit argument and debate. The quotes from the following critics illustrate opposing assessments of the degree to which the character Rosalind in Shakepeare’s As You Like It, ultimately manages on the one hand, to enlarge or to redefine what she (women) can do and be (see first quote by Howard), or on the other hand, shows the disciplinary limits and ideological forces that return her character to dominant ways of being (see second quote by Erickson):

    As You Like It is poised carefully on the razor’s edge separating fantasy from harsh reality. . . . [the play] is to a remarkable degree open to the infinite malleability of human beings and their social practices. . . . It is with the heroine, however, that As You Like It offers its richest dramatization of a figure who plays endlessly with the limits and possibilities of her circumstances. . . . this he/she, continues to the end to defy the fixed identities and the exclusionary choices of the everyday world, offering instead a world of multiple possibilities and transformable identities.”  (Jean E. Howard, The Norton Shakespeare, 378-384)

    “Male friendship, exemplified by the reconciliation of Duke Senior and Orlando, provides a framework that diminishes and contains Rosalind’s apparent power. . . . Concentration on Rosalind to the neglect of other issues distorts the overall design of As You Like It, one that is governed by male ends. . . . as the play returns to the normal world, [Rosalind] will be reduced to the traditional woman who is subservient to men” (Peter Erickson, Patriarchal Structures in Shakespeare’s Drama 16, 21).

    Another example: consider how critics’ comments on Twelfth Night invoke/refer to debates over (im)proper boundaries of gender-identity and desire as represented in that play.Valerie Traub states "The homoerotic energies of Viola, Olivia, and Orsino are displaced onto Antonio, whose relation to Sebastian is finally sacrificed for the maintenance of institutionalized heterosexuality and generational continuity. In other words, Twelfth Night closes down the possibility of homoerotic play initiated by the material presence of the transvestized boy actors. The fear expressed, however, is not of homoeroticism per se; homoerotic pleasure is explored and sustained until it collapses into fear of erotic exclusivity and its corollary: non-reproductive sexuality. The result is a more rigid dedication to the ideology of binarism, wherein gender and status inequalities are all the more forcefully reinscribed" (Desire and Anxiety: Circulations of Sexuality in Shakespearean Drama p.123). Catherine Belsey observes that "If the speech acts in 1.5 are gendered, the gender in question fluctuates from moment to moment in a tantalizing display of discontinuity and deferral. This is not consistently either a straight or a drag act" (Why Shakespeare? 139). Bruce Smith sums up the play’s erotic confusions in this way: “Desire of male for female (Orsino for Olivia, Sebastian for Olivia), of female for male (Olivia for ‘Cesario,’ Viola for Orsino), of male for male (Antonio for Sebastian, Orsino for ‘Cesario’), of female for female (Olivia for Viola), of male for either, of female for either, of either for either: the love plots in Twelfth Night truly offer ‘what you will’” (Twelfth Night: Texts and Contexts 15). In his introduction to the play, Greenblatt states that the "transforming power of costume unsettles fixed categories of gender and social class and allows characters to explore emotional territory that a culture officially hostile to same-sex desire and cross-class marriage would ordinarily have ruled out of bounds" (446 or 1762), which may lead to something "irreducibly strange about the marriages with which Twelfth Night ends" (449 or 1764). Jean Howard argues that the "play enacts . . . the containment of gender and class insurgency . . . . the play seems to me to applaud a crossdressed

    To continue with examples/advice, you might explain the social dimensions or importance of a particular
    character’s desires and relations to and for another (or to others, including
    a group or "category" of people or to/for some concept or principle or desired identity/achievement); your analysis
    may also speculate on the degrees of authority or power exercised or available
    to particular "figures" or "subjects" (characters) in the work/text; moreover,
    how are such identities or relationships represented and enacted (presented
    rhetorically in language and through narrative and dramatic structure and style), and to what extent are these desires and power relations and identities in flux, dramatized as being put into question or debate between different social/political/class/gender/ethnic/religious arrangements or configurations. And how do such meanings become presented in literature/text and in performance? For drama, how would a director and actors embody and perform (and address the choices for performance) and communicate a particular interpretation. . . .

    Review some aspect of one of the specified, selected texts in view of such or similar problem-posing questions and critical/theoretical framework for identifying/understanding. Take care not to assume that we readily know what particular texts mean, or what meanings are possible, given our assumptions about the time periods in which the texts were composed and how we make sense of these texts today. It is productive to inquire into the possibilities for meaning and for debate, rather than to foreclose such debate by assuming in advance that a text means something or that it could not possibly mean something that seems out of bounds, out of context. As always, you need to find ways to read closely and well, and to work from the evidence and posited aims/arguments of the texts, of critics/scholars’ research and arguments, and of your sense of the text’s functions/meanings/effects.

    I encourage you to develop and
    to support your ideas as clearly and as cogently as space allows, including
    brief citations of specific lines that illustrate your interpretation, and
    concise use of summary and paraphrase in support of your analysis. It may be helpful for your response
    to include a statement that makes a claim or presents a thesis with brief
    explanation and support (such as in the form of “One of Portia’s main
    concerns is that she . . . because . . . . But her desire for . . . conflicts
    with . . ., and she must . . . in order to . . . . The play thus represents
    . . . in its depiction of . . . . Moreover, it is only through X’s relationship
    to Y that Z can be realized or established or resolved, even though . . .
    .” This is just a partial and overstated (!) example of a structure
    that might inform your reasoning and writing–the main
    advice is that you may find it effective to compose a thesis for
    your analysis/essay.

    Tory Young, for instance, offers this general schemata/structure for an essay that is concerned with argument and interpretation and analysis (from Studying English Literature): (1) The issue; (2) the claim; (3) The supporting evidence; (4) The explanation that connects the evidence to the claim about the subject; (5) Rebuttals and qualifiers; ( 6) The explanation that connects them to the claim about the subject. Some of these stages or building blocks for the essay may be repeated (steps 2-6 or 3-6), and each stage should contribute to developing the argument and potential expressed in your thesis statement. As Young states, "Your thesis statement is a sentence-long summary of your argument . . . .Your thesis statement is an argument that you are going to examine with recourse to evidence from primary and secondary research" (106). Moreover, does each paragraph in the essay provide support for the argument or clearly analyze opposing views to the argument.

    Katherine Acheson (in Writing Essays About Literature) states that "the task of a student assigned to write an essay about literature is to present a clearly written argument, based on evidence, about the meaning, power, or structure of the work or works" (7). She describes the task of writing such an essay as one in which you "produce a narrative that offers an explanation for the effects the work of literature has" (8)–these effects, for instance, are the ideas and feelings produced by the work of literature (produced through the things that are used to make it, the words). Acheson describes the thesis statement in this way: "The thesis statement describes the evidence you are using, states your interpretations of this evidence, and brings those insights together into a conclusion that is about the way the literature works, what it means, or how and why it has the emotional impact it does" (97). She also emphasizes that arguments in literary criticism analyze "examples in order to come to broader conclusions"–these arguments therefore demonstrate inductive reasoning that moves logically and persuasively from particular pieces of compelling evidence to broader generalizations that advance/deepen/enrich understanding.

    Acheson notes, like Tory Young, that the paragraphs in the body of your essay "will each make a point contributing to your argument, and each will highlight the evidence that supports that point. The subject for each body paragraph is provided by your subtopic sentences" (111) and typically the concluding sentence in each paragraph "stipulates the relationship " of the paragraph "to the argument as a whole" and also "leads to the next paragraph." One’s writing need not be so formulaic–you can depart from these guidelines–but this is sound general advice. Acheson offers an additional caution and encouragement: "The analytical reasons that a piece of evidence supports the argumentative contention of the paragraph are implicit in the choice you made to include that evidence in that category. But remember this important advice: your sentences must make those reasons explicit. Whenever you feel uncertain, return to two home bases: 1) your research and the evidence it has provided and 2) the thesis statement and the argument it articulates" (118).

    William Whitla (The English Handbook: A Guide to Literary Studies) echoes such sentiments: "For an argument to be convincing, the relationship between generalizations or assertions and supporting evidence must be considered carefully. Many students have the most trouble at exactly this point: they either cannot qualify a generalization in the face of contradictory evidence and so ignore the exception, or they suppress that evidence and continue to assert a generalization. . . . An academic argument, then, is not a contest of absolute rights and wrongs, but rather is a structured statement of position that moves logically to persuade an audience of your views" (92).

    Assume
    your audience is familiar with the text, but take care to articulate clearly
    your understanding and interpretation of the material, especially problems
    or contradictions that seem difficult to resolve.

    Keep
    in mind that your analysis should aim to supplement or to build upon class discussion;
    in short, don’t simply repeat an argument discussed
    substantially unless you were engaged substantially in that discussion.

    Wow, this is a lot of (largely general) advice so how to sum up: Some
    writers use the first paragraph to describe an interpretative
    problem that arises in a specific passage or for/in a character (and the relations
    of that character to others or to the text’s cultural context), or to present
    a conflict of critical approaches to a topic or issue that is pertinent to or evident in the literary work. This opening often includes reference to how the text or an aspect of it has been regarded by other scholars–what are some prior or ‘traditional’ ways of framing and understanding what’s at stake in this text? In contrast or in some kind of supplementary extension, what do you understand differently–what difference does your reading make/add and why is it significant/important to consider your line of analysis and argument? What is lost by sticking with prior views and what is gained by considering your counter-view or extension of the prior view to push its analysis further? Can you state this difference that you bring to the conversation in the form of a thesis/hypothesis that addresses (answers or resolves) the problem you have identified?And as Young and Acheson note/advise above, what will be your series of claims supported by evidence and reasoning and taking into account arguments/evidence that may qualify or limit your claim along with any counter argument you make in turn to rebut or take into account the arguments and evidence against your position? As you conclude, you may find a way to restate or reframe your main claim/argument, including its value/significance (the import/importance), and whether your line of analysis suggests further avenues of inquiry and research to be done.

     

    Here’s a reminder of a guiding principle/observation from our main course website.

    The quote that follows serves as a general guiding premise/claim for the course and its outcomes (also see expected learning outcomes noted further below, following the semester schedule): Literature provides us with a way of understanding how our social life works. Human social life consists of narratives for living, with ‘narratives’ being understood here as an actual life experience spread over time and guided by cultural stories that justify it to participants. Both the cultural and real-world narrative can change; both use frames to exclude norm-dissonant perspectives and values and to ensure that the meanings that support the continuity and homogeneity of the lived process are stable, predictable, and enforced. Who tells the stories in the culture thus largely shapes how that cultural world will be organized. Stories are what people believe and how they believe, and how people believe determines how they act and how they live. Stories can change how people think, perceive, believe, and act. The analysis of the work they perform is thus an important endeavor. And that is what criticism is all about. (An Introduction to Criticism: Literature/Film/Culture–Wiley-Blackwell, 2012)

     

    Advanced Advice on Writing Effective Introductions for Journal Articles/Essays

    Evaluation/Assessment Rubric for Critical Essay and Term Essay, with check mark along a scale, including specific comments to supplement my notations on the texts of the essays themselves:

    Rubric for Initial Criteria for Evaluating Critical Writing/Essays:   Excellent    Very Good-Good    Competent-Fair    Weak
    Note: Ultimately the evaluation of your work is holistic,
    and therefore also intends to register the different, nuanced,
    unexpected and evocative effects of your analysis,
    exploration, creative expression/affect, and engagement
    with learning and discovery.

    1. Strength and clarity of (hypo)thesis/focus,
    this may include your introduction to the problem to be
    addressed, the critical/scholarly question and
    conversation that your essay will contribute to,
    intervene in, with scholarship appropriately introduced


    and integrated into your text…

    2. Intellectual/conceptual strength and persuasiveness of
    main claim as well as ensuing argument (including
    counter-argument to respond to differing or opposing views
    /logic/premises/critical analysis/theory/ideas        

    3. Cohesive and coherent development, logical
     organization, including well-structured paragraphs with
    clear points and compelling, specific support/evidence

    4. Analysis of text’s/topic’s relevant cultural/historical
     contexts and if deployed, of related scholarship/criticism that
    supports and strengthens the argument;
    analysis of text’s rhetorical/persuasive strategies, structure
    (narrative/dramatic/poetic structure, aspects of performance)

    5. Topic’s depth/complexity, including explanation of
    problem to be addressed, recognition of text’s
    conflicts/contradictions (ideological/rhetorical),
    creativity and sense of discovery/affective engagement
    conveyed—the articulated sense of “what’s at stake, why
    it matters” —what difference your essay makes

    6. Significance/ conclusion

    7. Effective sentences, syntax, active verbs/consistency in verb tense,
    diction, punctuation, complexity, and suitable style: academic,
    critical, appropriate to your understanding of the
    materials/subjects; avoids clichés and trite expressions, avoids overusing

    prepositional phrases, appropriately concise

    8. MLA style —parenthetical citation of sources,
    Works Cited; formatting; spelling ungraded but noted

     

    Academic Misconduct: Any act of academic misconduct, including but not limited to cheating, fabrication, plagiarism or facilitating academic dishonesty, will result in failure of the assignment and given the points available, likely failure of the course. Your case will be reported to the Dean of Students according to campus guidelines, and such matters are subject to policies in the UI Student Code of Conduct. Unfortunately, I have had to refer students’ plagiarized work to the Dean of Students in past sections of classes, nearly every year. See this helpful highlighed weblink to learn more about academic integrity on the Dean of Students’ website , including plagiarism: Plagiarism includes the using of ideas, data, or language of another as one’s own without specific or proper acknowledgement or citation, lack of knowledge of proper citation is not valid excuse for plagiarism as it is the responsibility of the author writing the material to know the proper methods for appropriate citation and/or seek guidance/help when using another’s work.

    Plagiarism can be committed in any type of assignment and includes, but is not limited to, the following behavior that also does not include the full, clear and proper acknowledgement of the original source: 

    • The copying of another person’s work, published or unpublished;
    • The paraphrase of another person’s work, published or unpublished;
    • Using another person’s ideas, arguments, and/or thesis from a published or unpublished work;
    • Using another person’s research from a published or unpublished work;
    • Using materials prepared by a person or agency in the selling of term papers or other academic materials. 

    See UI Library Guidance on Avoiding Plagiarism

    Purdue OWL workshop/guidelines on using MLA for citation

    MLA Quick Guide to Works Cited/citation

    Basic Refresher Guidelines on Conducting Academic Research (via UI Library’s site for English 102) including support for process of finding and citing articles from peer-reviewed journals, books, and the option for direct research assistance/session with a UI librarian.

    Lessons on Style (general advice/quited dated handout but perhaps worth looking over) [pdf]

    Quick Advice on Punctuation (also dated) [pdf]

    Summary/Overview of Perspectives on Critical Theory

    Online Writing Center Resources (from writing essays to grammar and usage advice):

    http://wiki.english.ucsb.edu/index.php/The_Craft_of_a_Literature_Paper

    Questions to Guide Review of Draft of Critical Essay:

    1. Does the essay clarify and advance understanding of problem/topic/method/perspective related to the “literary” text’s purposes and rhetorical strategies and to the ‘student’ writer’s interpretation and understanding of the text?
    2. Can one understand the writer’s approach and strategies for introducing and developing the critical essay?
    3. Sum up the essay’s central idea, hypothesis or purpose in one sentence.
    4. What might a reader like best about the essay? Where might the reader want to know more or to pose a critical question?

    Desired learning outcomes in the context of the Department of English and its major:

    1) Students exhibit knowledge of diverse literatures in English and the cultural and historical contexts in which these works were produced.

    2) Students can discern and evaluate the aesthetic and formal qualities of various texts.

    3) Students can write an analytic essay that exhibits both critical thinking and effective argumentation.

    4) Students can write a research essay that exhibits effective deployment of research as evidence.

    5) Students’ writing exhibits correct usage of grammar and of MLA format and citation conventions.

     

     

     

     

    Schedule | Syllabus | Projects | Moodle | Resources | Email Craig

    Critical Essay

    Write a 6-8 page essay that critically analyzes a screenshot from a work of New Media using quotations and ideas from our course readings.  

    CONTENTS  

    1. Choose a Work of New Media

    The subject of your essay will be a work of New Media: a particular web site, for example, or a specific video game (and specific version), or a Facebook news feed on a particular day, etc.  Do not scatter your efforts talking about video games or a service like Twitter generally and in the abstract.  

    2. Explore a Critical Question or Issue

    Your analysis should ask and answer one critical question about that New Media work, or explain how this New Media work exemplifies and illuminates a critical issue.  The question or issue will provide the unifying center of gravity for your essay.  

    A critical question or issue concerns how a work of New Media means or achieves an effect, what that meaning or effect is, to whom it means or is effective (or not), what the consequences that meaning or effect has (aesthetic, social, political, historical, psychological, cultural, economic, etc.).

    3. Use Quotations From the Class’s Critical Sources

    Develop your analysis around at least three quotations from at least two of our critical readings from the semester: Manovich, Bissell, Murray, Birkerts, Liu.  One of these quotations will probably be the primary inspiration for the critical question or issue that unifies your essay.  

    4. Focus on a Screenshot (Part Represents the Whole)

    In your analysis, use one screenshot to visually represent the larger work of New Media and to help visualize what you have to say about it.  Rather than trying to generalize about a whole video game or online app, you should use the screen shot to condense that whole experience into one specific, visual eye-full. 

    The screen shot should be printed out (black and white is okay) and included with your essay.

    5. Do a Close Reading

    As much as possible, try to choose and use the screen shot to visualize and sum up whatever you have to say about the New Media work as a whole.  The screenshot can serve a hook on which to hang your whole argument.  You will be performing what is called a “ close reading ” of the screenshot: making a lot out of a little, choosing small visual and verbal details to represent larger meaning, effects, functions, issues, ideas, experiences, impressions, patterns, consequences, etc.  

    Analyses that do close readings tend to use words like “represent,” “suggest,” "illustrate,” “offer,” “imply,” “epitomize,” “signify,” “symbolize,” “show,” “connote,” “denote,” “indicate,” “visualize,” “demonstrate,” “convey,” “express,” “reveal,” “expose,” etc.  

    6. Include Quotations from an Outside Criticial Source

    In addition to the quotations from our course readings, I will ask you to find, read, quote (at least twice), and cite at least one other critical source about or related to that New Media work: a review of the video game, for instance, or an in-depth article about Facebook’s waning popularity.  

     

    PROCESS

    Write It Twice: From Exploration to Statement to Argument

    You will write this essay twice:  

    1. First, Write It Starting from the Beginning:

    In an exploratory rough draft, you will go top to bottom, trying to put the various elements together to see where they lead you: the New Media work you’ve selected, the screen shot you’ve chosen, the quotations.  

    This exploratory rough draft should try to close read the screenshot to link these ingredients together—get them talking to one another—and move you toward a sense of momentum and coherence.  

    At the end of the exploratory draft, try to distill the BEST of what you’ve realized and said (or maybe just realized) into a synthesizing statement—a unifying realization, insight, or fusion of the most interesting things you’ve thought or realized in the draft.  

    2. Next, Write It Starting from the End

    In a final draft, turn the whole project upside down.  Write an introduction that sets up and presents the synthesizing statement (or “thesis statement”) right away as an argument you’ll make, and then reassemble and rewrite all the elements (cutting out what’s extraneous) to make good on that claim.  Reorganize, refocus, and sharpen every paragraph to realize (that is, to make real) your argument and purpose.  

    Make sure the first sentence of each paragraph suggests how that paragraph will both push your argument forward while also supporting and reinforcing your thesis statement announced in the introductory paragraph.

    The final version of the essay should give the impression that you started the whole process with the final thesis statement and argument already in mind.  The world will never know how you got there! 

     

    IF YOU GET STUCK: FREEWRITE

    Try opening a new Word file and writing for five minutes solid, talking to yourself about what you’re doing and what you want to do

     

    Resources

    • Dracula for the iPad
    • Dracula Developer Diary 2
    • Nancy Drew TV Show: Secret of the Whispering Walls (Part 2)
    • Nancy Drew Game: Ransom of the Seven Ships
    • " Solving the Crime of Modernity: Nancy Drew in 1930 "
    • Close Reading (Wikipedia)
    • Close Reading of A Literary Passage
    • How to Do a Close Reading (Harvard)

     

    Schedule | Syllabus | Projects | Moodle | Resources | Email Craig

     

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    • Writing a Critical Analysis of a Short Story

    Writing a Critical Analysis of a Short Story

    To write an effective critical analysis, you must first be sure
    that you understand the question that has been posed, and all
    literary terms that you have been asked to address. Once you feel
    you understand the question, reread the piece of literature, making
    notes. Then look at the notes you’ve made, consider what
    connections you can make between observations, and reconsider the
    question. Try to formulate a rough thesis statement (your “claim”).
    Now try to select those pieces of evidence that you feel you can
    most convincingly use to support the claim you made. Next, try to
    formulate a good introduction, that

    • names the work discussed and the author.
    • provides a very brief plot summary.
    • relates some aspect of that plot to the topic you have chosen
      to address.
    • provides a thesis statement.
    • indicates the way you plan to develop your argument (support
      your claim).

    Now proceed to introduce and discuss the evidence you mentioned
    in your introduction, in the order in which you mentioned it.
    Ensure that you deal with each kind of evidence in a paragraph of
    its own, and that you introduce the topic of each paragraph with a
    carefully-focused topic sentence. Also ensure that you end each
    paragraph with a concluding sentence that sums up the thrust of
    that paragraph’s argument and possibly paves the way for the next
    piece of evidence to be discussed. (Alternatively, you can begin
    the next paragraph with a transitional phrase that links the new
    piece of evidence with the one you have just summarized.)

    Finally, write a conclusion that restates your thesis (but using
    different words), incorporates a brief restatement of your key
    evidence, and provides a sense of closure. A good closing technique
    is to somehow link the claim you have made about this particular
    piece of literature with the author’s general style or
    preoccupations, or to suggest some way in which the topic you have
    just discussed relates more generally to some aspect of human
    existence.

    Model Essay

    What follows is the sample essay analysing the use of setting in
    the short story “The Cask of Amontillado.” Both “good” and “poor”
    examples of the essay’s first and second body paragraphs are
    included. As you read each paragraph of the essay, beginning with
    its introduction, clicking on the “continue” arrow at the bottom of
    the paragraph will permit you to see commentary on particular
    features of the essay-writing process. To see all the commentary,
    you may need to click the arrow multiple times.

    • Introduction
    • Body Paragraph #1 (good)
    • Body Paragraph #1 (poor)
    • Body Paragraph #2 (good)
    • Body Paragraph #2 (poor)
    • Body Paragraph #3
    • Conclusion

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    • BI INTELLIGENCE

    16 Free Online Business Courses That Are Actually Worth Your Time

    Max Nisen

    Oct. 15, 2013, 2:29 PM





    SHiller

    First Wharton decided to offer the core of its first year MBA program online. Now Harvard Business School is exploring online options as well.

    Increasingly, it’s possible to get an extremely well-rounded business education from the best professors in the world without enrolling in a university or even leaving your house.

    While online courses won’t necessarily give you the pay boost of a traditional two-year MBA and probably won’t land you a job on Wall Street, they can give you many of the core skills taught at top universities and business schools.

    We’ve found some of the best and most useful free online business courses out there. We’ve noted which courses are self-paced and which are being released more formally and sequentially. The Coursera, Udacity, and EdX platforms all offer the opportunity to complete coursework and earn a certificate for completing the course, but any of these can be taken more casually.



    1/

    Yale: Financial Markets with Bob Shiller


    YouTube

    Platform: Coursera

    Length/Start date: The formal, graded course starts in February 2014, though an earlier, self paced version is available from Yale. That version has 23 lectures that are 75 minutes each.

    Time commitment: Six to 12 hours a week.

    Why you should take it: For one thing, it’s an opportunity to learn from Bob Shiller, the most recent Nobel Laureate in Economics and one of the most important thinkers in finance. Shiller has been essential in helping us understand how bubbles can form in financial markets.

    The course is an effort to give an understanding of the theory behind financial markets and “its relation to the history, strengths, and imperfections of such institutions as banking, insurance, securities, futures, and other derivatives markets, and the future of these institutions over the next century.”

    The course is a good foundation for people in business to understand the environment they work in and is interesting for econ and finance buffs.



    2/

    Stanford: Entrepreneurship Through The Lens Of Venture Capital


    YouTube

    Platform: Stanford/ITunesU

    Length/Start date: A total of 11 self-paced lectures.

    Time commitment: Each lecture varies, but the average length is about an hour.

    Why you should take it: The idea of getting venture capital backing and scaling a business from nothing to an IPO sounds incredibly intimidating. This course is an effort to explain that process, from the perspective of the people that invest in tiny startups with the expectation of making a massive return.

    The course comes from Stanford, which has produced its share of successful entrepreneurs, including Sergey Brin and Larry Page. A variety of guest lecturers, both successful venture capitalists and investors, give advice as part of the course.



    3/

    Stanford: Game Theory


    YouTube

    Platform: Coursera

    Length/Start date: Started October 14th, runs for 9 weeks.

    Time commitment/prerequisites: Takes five to seven hours a week. Requires basic probability theory, and lightweight calculus (the ability to take a derivative).

    Why you should take it: Made famous by mathematician John Nash, the subject of the book and film “A Beautiful Mind,” game theory is the mathematical study of how rational and irrational actors interact in strategic, competitive situations.

    It looks at the incentives and behavior driving everything from what we traditionally think of as games to competition among firms, trading behavior on stock markets, and Google keyword auctions.



    4/

    The University of Pennsylvania/Wharton: Gamification


    YouTube

    Platform: Coursera

    Length/Start date: Starts January 27, and lasts 10 weeks.

    Time commitment: Four to eight hours a week.

    Why you should take it: This course was Wharton’s first MOOC offering. Gamification is one of the hottest buzzwords in business. It’s the application of techniques from video games and their design to non-game problems, like managing people or solving business problems.

    The best games leverage psychology and technology, just like good managers do, and organizations are increasingly using tools and techniques learned from video games to boost productivity, in human resources, and to engage customers. This course looks at how gamification works and can be used most effectively.



    5/

    Columbia: Financial Engineering And Risk Management (Part 1)


    YouTube

    Platform: Coursera

    Length/Start date: Starts October 28, and lasts seven weeks.

    Time commitment/prerequisites: Requires seven to 10 hours a week. Students need undergraduate calculus, linear algebra, and statistics. Good Excel skills are helpful.

    Why you should take it: This is a more involved and technical finance class, but it’s well worth it for people that want a deeper understanding of how markets work and how to invest.

    The class focuses on how to build the sorts of models involved in “financial engineering,” the creation of derivative securities (investments with prices based on other assets). It will also look at the role that some of these assets, particularly mortgage backed securities, played in the financial crisis.

    There’s a follow-up course that goes into even more detail.



    6/

    Duke: How To Reason And Argue


    Coursera/YouTube

    Platform: Coursera

    Length/Start date: Started August 26, and lasts 12 weeks.

    Time commitment: Five to six hours a week, no prerequisites.

    Why you should take it: While it might be couched in more business-friendly terms like “negotiation,” “sales,” or “motivation,” a lot of business is about convincing people to do things that they don’t really want to — accept a lesser deal or push through exhaustion to get a project done, for example.

    This course gives a detailed tutorial on how to break down someone else’s argument, recognize flawed or vague reasoning, and construct a brilliant argument of your own.



    7/

    Duke: A Beginner’s Guide To Irrational Behavior


    YouTube

    Platform: Coursera

    Length/Start date: The course ran last spring and all materials are available. It’s designed to last eight weeks.

    Time commitment: Seven to 10 hours a week, and no background is required other than a “curiosity about human nature.”

    Why you should take it: People aren’t always rational. They do unpredictable things that are often baffling to those who try to think rationally.

    The course is taught by Duke’s Dan Ariely, author of the best-selling book “Predictably Irrational” and one of the most prominent scholars studying this through the lens of behavioral economics. A student who’s taken 36 MOOCs said it was the one he’d most recommend to a first-time MOOC student.

    The idea is to introduce students to a range of cases where people make decisions inconsistent with standard economic theory, which assumes rational decision making, and think about how insights about that sort of behavior can be applied.



    8/

    The University of Pennsylvania/Wharton: An Introduction To Marketing


    YouTube

    Platform: Coursera

    Length/Start date: Nine weeks long, and started October 14

    Time commitment/prerequisites: Requires five to six hours a week. Though no formal prerequisites are required, this is an MBA course, so a business background helps.

    Why you should take it: Wharton has one of the highest-ranked marketing programs in the world, and this course is team-taught by three of its stars: Peter Fader, David Bell, and Barbara E. Khan.

    Anyone interested in starting a business needs to learn how to relate to customers and sell their products, so this is an absolutely essential course.



    9/

    The University of Pennsylvania/Wharton: An Introduction To Financial Accounting


    YouTube/Coursera

    Platform: Coursera

    Length/start date: Runs ten weeks, and started September 15

    Time commitment/prerequisites: Six to eight hours a week, and no background in the area required.

    Why you should take it: Learning the basics of accounting and how to read a balance sheet, income statement, and cash flow is incredibly useful for just about anybody. The course is also designed for students with no background in the subject, and the only math requirement is knowing how to add and subtract.

    As the professor puts it, accounting is “the language of business.”

    The course is also offered by one of the most prestigious business schools in the country, and taught by one of Wharton’s senior and most highly regarded faculty members, Brian Bushee, a 13-year veteran of Wharton and former Harvard Business School professor. Though it’s a bit more restrictive than the entirely self-directed courses, and new material will be released periodically, you get more of a community feel and more resources.

    “You will not only better understand what people in the business media are talking about,” the course description says, “you will also be able to notice when they don’t know what they are talking about!”



    10/

    The University of Pennsylvania/Wharton: An Introduction To Operations Management


    YouTube

    Platform: Coursera

    Length/Start date: Eight weeks long, and started September 30

    Time commitment/prerequisites: Five to seven hours a week. The course is “designed for business students and executives,” but there are no academic or math requirements.

    Why you should take it: This is the second course in Wharton’s “MBA Foundation Series,” which teaches a lot of what a first-year student enrolled at the school would learn. Anyone who has hopes to rise from being an employee to managing or running a company needs to learn some of the key principles behind analyzing and improving business processes, boosting productivity, and meeting higher standards.

    The professor, Christian Terwiesch, is a multiple award-winner for his teaching at Wharton, and wrote one of the most popular textbooks on operations management.



    11/

    The University of Pennsylvania/Wharton: An Introduction To Corporate Finance


    YouTube

    Platform: Coursera

    Length/start date: Runs for six weeks, and starts October 28

    Time commitment: Takes six to eight hours a week, no formal requirements, but it’s a course taught to MBA students who have managed to get into Wharton, so it starts at a high level.

    Why you should take it: This is an entirely different set of tools than the ones you learn in accounting, helping provide the basics of valuing companies, valuing stocks and bonds, and using other tools to analyze financial decisions.

    You can’t do much better for a pure MBA experience, as these are based on lectures given to Wharton students, and you’re learning from one of the acknowledged masters of the subject in Franklin Allen, a 30-year veteran of the school who wrote one of the most popular textbooks available on the subject.



    12/

    Udacity: How To Build A Startup


    YouTube

    Platform: Udacity

    Length/Start date: Self paced

    Time commitment/prerequisites: Students are free to pace themselves, and Blank suggests that they have at least some idea of the business they want to create.

    Why you should take it: This course is a bit unusual, in that it’s not produced in partnership with a university or traditional professor, and it’s not about a traditional academic subject.

    It’s a practical and thorough guide to how to create your own company by successful serial entrepreneur Steve Blank, based on an approach he’s been using and teaching for years. It takes would-be entrepreneurs through everything from developing a viable product to figuring out how they’re actually going to make money.



    13/

    MIT/UC Berkeley: Introductory Macro And Microeconomics


    YouTube

    Platform: MIT OpenCourseWare / UC Berkeley on ITunesU

    Length/Start date: Self paced

    Time commitment/prerequisites: The course is taken entirely independently. Some basic, single variable calculus is required, but no more than you’d learn in a high school calculus class.

    Why you should take it: Economics has a bad reputation, but it’s absolutely vital.

    This introductory microeconomics class is one of the most popular that MIT has made available, and is taught by Jonathan Gruber. He’s been teaching there for 20 years and is an extremely prominent economist who helped design Massachusetts’ groundbreaking health-care reform.

    Economics, and microeconomics in particular, are about how we make the best decision given scarce resources like money or time. That’s useful in itself, as is this course as background for more advanced work.

    Berkeley also offers its introductory micro class online, along with introductory macroeconomics, and intermediate courses in both. Also worth checking out is international economics for those who take a more global angle.



    14/

    MIT: Innovation And Commercialization


    YouTube

    Platform: EdX

    Length/start date: Runs for 13 weeks, and started September 16

    Time commitment/prerequisites: 12 hours a week, and no prerequisites required other than an interest in the subject.

    Why you should take it: It’s one thing to talk about coming up with an innovative product, but it’s another thing entirely to do it. The same goes for making an existing company more agile and quicker to come up with new ideas.

    This course takes an intelligent look at how innovation happens in the real world, rather than how people talk about it in meetings. It’s taught by Eugene Fitzgerald, who came up with important innovations in his own right during his time at AT&T’s Bell Labs and later; and Andreas Wankerl, who runs the Innovation Interface at MIT and Cornell.



    15/

    Columbia: Economics Of Money And Banking


    YouTube

    Platform: Coursera

    Length/Start date: Lasts seven weeks, and started September 1, though material will remain available. Part two starts October 13.

    Time commitment/prerequisites: Five to seven hours a week. Students who take the course at Barnard and Columbia have completed intermediate macro and microeconomics, but students have also done fine without having taken those courses.

    Why you should take it: For the last five years, the economy has been front and center in the news as our banking and economic systems all but collapsed, were rescued, and are slowly coming back.

    Behind the crisis and behind the recovery is an enormously complex system that relatively few people understand. This course is an effort to explain how money markets work, which is essential for anybody who truly wants to understand how everything moves in the economy.



    16/

    MIT: Introduction To Lean Six Sigma Methods


    YouTube

    Platform: MIT OpenCourseWare

    Length/Start date: Self paced

    Time commitment: Taught in three eight-hour sessions to students.

    Why you should take it: Lean Six Sigma principles are used throughout the business world to control quality and constantly improve manufacturing.

    The strategies originated at Toyota and Motorola respectively and have been widely adopted throughout the business world. This course aims to teach people how to apply the core principles to boost quality, customer satisfaction, productivity, and financial performance.

    The course focuses on the aerospace industry, but the principles can be applied anywhere.



    17/

    BONUS: Ben Bernanke on the Federal Reserve and MIT’s Andrew Lo on Financial Theory


    YouTube

    The Bernanke Lectures

    Before joining the Federal Reserve, Ben Bernanke was an academic economist and professor at Princeton University. Last year, he returned to his roots with a series of four very thorough and valuable lectures on the history of the Federal Reserve, the conduct of monetary policy, and the financial crisis.

    Financial Theory with Andrew Lo

    Andrew Lo is one of the leading minds in the world when it comes to hedge funds and financial engineering. His course for MBAs at MIT’s Sloan School of Management on financial theory is definitely worth a look for those interested in the field.



    18/

    It’s not just what you know, but how you use it:


    Stacy Revere/GettyImages

    18 People Whose Incredible Work Ethic Paid Off

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    Life and Letters

    Becoming Mary Poppins

    P. L. Travers, Walt Disney, and the making of a myth.

    By Caitlin Flanagan

    The 1964 world première of “Mary Poppins” was held at Grauman’s Chinese Theatre in Hollywood, and it was the kind of spectacle for which the Disney organization had become famous. Throngs of screaming fans were greeted by Mickey Mouse, Goofy, Snow White and the dwarfs, as well as by entertainers who gestured toward the movie’s Edwardian setting: a twelve-piece pearly band, chimney-sweep dancers, valets dressed as bobbies, and a bevy of pretty Disneyland hostesses, whose traditional uniforms (kilts and black velvet riding helmets) suggested a general Englishness. Hollywood luminaries arrived in chauffeured automobiles, the women in ball gowns and mink stoles (Angie Dickinson, Maureen O’Hara, Suzanne Pleshette), the men wearing dinner jackets (Edward G. Robinson, Cesar Romero, Buddy Ebsen). The arrival of the movie’s principals aroused muted excitement: Julie Andrews, who played Mary Poppins, had never appeared in a movie before, and Dick Van Dyke—the chimney sweep Bert—became much better known after the film’s release. Then Walt Disney himself arrived, stepping out of a stretch limousine and gallantly reaching a hand into the car to help his wife, Lillian, onto the pavement. Disney was by then immensely famous, appearing on his own television show every Sunday night. He had carefully engineered his entrance: when his car pulled up, the Disney characters mobbed it, and soon afterward clouds of balloons were released into the air.

    Inside the packed twelve-hundred-seat theatre, the members of the audience responded to the movie with enthusiasm: they gave it a five-minute standing ovation. In the midst of the celebrating crowd, it would have been easy to overlook the sixty-five-year-old woman sitting there, weeping. Anyone who recognized her as P. L. Travers, the author of the Mary Poppins books, could have been forgiven for assuming that her tears were the product either of artistic delight or of financial ecstasy (she owned five per cent of the gross; the movie made her rich). Neither was the case. The picture, she thought, had done a strange kind of violence to her work. She would turn the personally disastrous première into a hilarious dining-out story, with Disney as the butt of her jokes. But she had a premonition that the movie she hated was about to change everything for her. Writing to a friend, she remarked that her life would never be the same.

    Travers’s dreams of becoming a famous writer were realized because of Disney’s movie, but its scope eclipsed everything else that she had or would achieve. She spent the rest of her long life (she died in 1996, at the age of ninety-six) linked artistically and personally to Mary Poppins. It was a persona—spinsterish children’s author, creator of a spinsterish character—that overshadowed the more complicated identity she had devoted her life to creating. The movie also left a deep impression on the generations of children who saw it during its three theatrical releases, in 1964, 1973, and 1980. These were children who grew up in an America in which nannies were as unfamiliar to middle-class neighborhoods as Jaguars and Martians. But they would become adults in an America that had invented a new nanny culture. To an astonishing extent, the way they came to think and talk about their employees was shaped by the movie they had seen so many years earlier.

    Nannies have become a force in American life because of the three-decade-long influx of middle-class mothers to the workforce, and the more recent wave of cheap female immigrant labor. “She’s the Guatemalan Mary Poppins!” a working mother will happily announce of her new employee—or the Colombian or the Caribbean one. It’s hard to find a book or an article about hiring a nanny that doesn’t make mention of the old girl. And even though the culture and experience of a Third World child-care provider are as removed from those of an Edwardian nanny as it is possible to be, we understand what the reference means: the nanny is good, she’s kind, and her ability to transform a chaotic household into a place of order and contentment verges on the supernatural. What people remember about the movie is that the family finds happiness and the nanny is magical. What they misremember is that it’s a film with a surprising moral: fire the nanny. In a sense, “Mary Poppins” is an anti-nanny propaganda film, the “Reefer Madness” of the working-mother set.

    The script for “Mary Poppins” was written by a group of men in Burbank in the early sixties, and it is set in London in 1910, in the household of a martinet banker (Mr. Banks), a suffragette (Mrs. Banks), and their two young children, Jane and Michael. But the Bankses’ story opens with an entirely contemporary predicament: a mother with tons of work being blindsided by a crisis more terrifying to the maternal soul than infidelity or financial reversal—nanny trouble. When first we meet Mrs. Banks, she is dancing along the pavement outside her house, triumphant in her day’s accomplishments. “We had the most glorious meeting,” she tells her servants, after she bursts through the front door, singing. “Mrs. Whitbourne-Allen chained herself to the wheel of the Prime Minister’s carriage. You should have been there! And Mrs. Ainslie—she was carried off to prison, singing and scattering pamphlets all the way!” The servants, however, have news of their own: the reason that Katie Nanna, the children’s nursemaid, is wearing her gabardine travelling outfit is that she is about to quit. They finally manage to tell Mrs. Banks, and it is as though they’d stuck a pin in her; we watch her crumple before our eyes. She snatches off her “Votes for Women” sash—“You know how the cause infuriates Mr. Banks”—and then does what any clear-thinking, intelligent woman in her situation would do: she begs. “Katie Nanna—I beseech you. Please reconsider. Think of the children. Think of Mr. Banks.” Speak of the devil—he marches through the door, and becomes apoplectic when he learns of the upheaval. In six minutes of film time, Mrs. Banks is changed from a balls-out feminist—“No more the meek and mild subservients, we!”—to a surrendered wife. “I’m sorry, dear,” she says. “I’ll try to do better next time.”

    What follows is the entirety of what most people remember of the film: Mary Poppins alights calmly from the sky, using her umbrella as a parachute, and begins to set things straight. Her main objective is to transform Mr. Banks from a prig to a loving mid-century American-style dad, with a hankering for kiddie fun and family time. But she’s got half an eye on the missus. By the movie’s end, Mrs. Banks has abandoned the whole crazy suffrage scheme, and proves it by using her “Votes for Women” sash as a tail for the children’s kite. As Mary Poppins slips away, Mrs. Banks goes to the park with her family, embracing her proper role in the household. The story’s happy ending depends on a signal fact: the Banks children will no longer be brought up by servants. Henceforth, their own mother—corralled homeward through the beneficent intercessions of Mary Poppins—will do the job herself.

    “Mary Poppins” advocates the kind of family life that Walt Disney had spent his career both chronicling and helping to foster on a national level: father at work, mother at home, children flourishing. It is tempting to imagine that in Travers he found a like-minded person, someone who embodied the virtues of conformity and traditionalism. Nothing could be further from the truth. Travers was a woman who never married, wore trousers when she felt like it, had a transformative and emotionally charged relationship with an older married man, and entered into a long-term live-in relationship with another woman. As she approached forty, she decided that she wanted a child. After a bizarre incident in which she attempted to adopt the seventeen-year-old girl who cleaned her house, she travelled to Ireland and adopted an infant, one of a pair of twins, and raised him as a single mother. Her reverence for the delights of family life was perhaps as intense as Disney’s, but her opinion about the shape such a life might assume was far more nuanced.

    Children’s authors are not known for their happy childhoods, and Helen Goff—the little girl who at twenty-one changed her name to Pamela Travers and never looked back—endured one that was almost archetypal in its sadness and its privations. She was born in Australia in 1899, the eldest daughter in a household of girls. Her father, Travers Goff, was a bank manager and a drinker, and he died when she was seven. Valerie Lawson, the author of the only comprehensive biography of Pamela Travers, notes that “epileptic seizure delirium” was given as the cause of death, but says Pamela Travers “always believed the underlying cause was sustained, heavy drinking.” Her mother, Margaret, who was pretty and feckless, soldiered on for a few years, and then, when Helen was ten, she did what a mother is never supposed to do. She gave up.

    One night, in the middle of a thunderstorm, Margaret left Helen in charge of the two younger children, telling her that she was going to drown herself in a nearby creek. As an old woman, Travers wrote about the terrifying experience: “Large-eyed, the little ones looked at me—she and I called them the little ones, both of us aware that an eldest child, no matter how young, can never experience the heart’s ease that little ones enjoy.” Helen stirred the fire and then they all lay down on the hearth rug and she told them a story about a magical flying horse, with the small ones asking excited questions (“Could he carry us to the shiny land, all three on his back?”). As she tried to distract her siblings, she worried about the future. She later wrote, “What happens to children who have lost both parents? Do they go into Children’s Homes and wear embroidered dressing-gowns, embroidery that is really darning?” That predicament—the fate of children whose parents can’t take care of them—haunted her for the rest of her life.

    Margaret came back that night, having been unsuccessful in her suicide attempt, but Helen’s mind was made up. She no longer cleaved to her unreliable, dithering mother but, rather, to a formidable maiden great-aunt, Helen Morehead. Aunt Ellie, as she was called, bossed everyone around, but her fierceness disguised a kindness she would have been embarrassed to admit.

    If it was possible to be a rebellious teen-ager in the girls’ schools of Sydney in the nineteen-tens, then Travers was one. She studied elocution and eventually joined a travelling Shakespeare company, playing the role of Lorenzo in “The Merchant of Venice.” She wrote for the Christchurch Sun, and for the literary magazine The Triad, where she was the author of a saucy column called “A Woman Hits Back” and often published her erotic ruminations. (Travers, inviting her readers to imagine her taking off her underwear: “The silky hush of intimate things, fragrant with my fragrance, steal softly down, so loth to rob me of my last dear concealment.”) She was loose-limbed and boyish—no beauty—but her phenomenal self-regard and quick, vicious wit drew attention. By 1924, she had decided that she had outgrown the antipodes, and bought a ticket on a passenger ship of the White Star Line bound for Southampton, hoping to make her fame and fortune as a writer in London.

    Once there, Travers found work as a journalist, filing stories for the Sun and eventually writing theatre reviews. Fleet Street was a man’s world, and she was a man’s girl. Flirtatious, charming, smart, unmarried, and a welcome addition to the convivial pub scene, she had the bounder’s willingness to press her work on anyone who might help her, and when her submission of poems to the Irish Statesman was met with a promising letter from its editor, the poet George Russell—known as A.E.—she went to Dublin to see him. A.E., a married man of fifty-six, was a reckless encourager of young people. His literary connections extended from the house next door—the Dublin home of Yeats—to New York and the Continent, and he offered them all to Travers. A theosophist, he urged her to take up the study of mysticism, which became a lifelong preoccupation. They began a relationship that was filial, intellectual, and marked by romantic gestures. It lasted until his death, ten years later.

    The most important of A.E.’s introductions, however, was not professional. He had a hunch that Travers would take a liking to another single girl living in London, Madge Burnand, the daughter of one of his friends, the former editor of Punch. The two women hit it off immediately. In 1931, they set up housekeeping in a cottage in Sussex. Madge did the cooking, while Pamela wrote poems for the Irish Statesman, and essays for the New English Weekly, where she later served on the board with T. S. Eliot. It was there, in the winter of 1933, that she succumbed to a bout of pleurisy, took to her bed, and began to write.

    Travers chose as her subject one of the great English preoccupations: nursery life. More to the point, within that subject she located a rich and relatively untapped vein of experience—the relationship between a nanny and her charges. Travers was writing at the end of a groundbreaking epoch of children’s literature that included the works of Lewis Carroll, Kenneth Grahame, J. M. Barrie, and A. A. Milne, each of them annexing vast territories of children’s experience. Several years earlier, Travers had published a newspaper short about a comical nanny named Mary Poppins. More recently, A.E.—whose advice usually succeeded only in making her bad poetry worse—had given her an inspired suggestion: he thought that she should write a story about a witch. Now the idea struck her: why not make Mary Poppins into a shape-shifter?

    We tend to think of the British nanny—formally trained, bred to the job, imperious, unflappable, and immaculately turned out—as one of England’s oldest traditions. She was actually a relatively short-lived institution. Born in the early days of Victoria’s reign, when industrialization and a population explosion among both the poor and the middle class brought the two groups together in a highly regimented and hierarchical servant culture, she had all but disappeared by the end of the Second World War. The middle-class house that was populated with specialized servants became a thing of the past, and nannies evolved into an accoutrement strictly of upper-class life, associated with the aristocracy.

    Travers’s story, which unfolded over the course of an eventual eight books, is set in Depression-era London, and describes a world in decline. The Banks family, though solidly middle class, is racked with financial anxieties, and possessed of “the smallest house in the Lane,” which is “rather dilapidated and needs a coat of paint.” Nonetheless, they have a retinue of servants: “Mrs. Brill to cook for them, and Ellen to lay the tables, and Robertson Ay to cut the lawn and clean the knives and polish the shoes and, as Mr. Banks always said, ‘to waste his time and my money,’ ” as well as a nurse, Katie Nanna, for their four children. Mrs. Banks keeps busy running the household, going to tea, and, when she can, putting her feet up. Mr. Banks works at a bank.

    Obviously, Travers did not write her books to commemorate a happy childhood, but she did seem interested in rewriting her bad one. The Banks family is a reformed version of the Goffs, their charming features magnified and their failures burnished away. Father is a banker, although not a drunk; mother is a flibbertigibbet, although not a suicidal one. And Mary Poppins, like Aunt Ellie, is the great deflater, the enemy of any attempt at whimsy or sentiment. (“ ‘I smell snow,’ said Jane as they got out of the Bus. ‘I smell Christmas trees,’ said Michael. ‘I smell fried fish,’ said Mary Poppins.”) But she is also an everyday enchantress, a woman who will scold a child for wearing a coat in a warm room but also one who will take her charges to a midnight congress of animals at the zoo, and on an afternoon trip around the world.

    The literary Mary Poppins is by no means an untroubling character. Indeed, at the end of the first chapter of the first book—in which she arrives as a shape hurled against the front door in the midst of a gale, assumes the form of a woman, bullies Mrs. Banks into hiring her, snaps at the children, and doses them with a mysterious potion after she gets them alone in the nursery—she earns only a qualified endorsement: “And although they sometimes found themselves wishing for the quieter, more ordinary days when Katie Nanna ruled the household, everybody, on the whole, was glad of Mary Poppins’s arrival.” She is, in fact, very often “angry,” “threatening,” “scornful,” and “frightening.” She calls the children cannibals, jostles them down the stairs, and makes them eat so quickly that they fear they will choke. She has a habit of saving the children from horrifying supernatural experiences, it’s true, but this would seem more of a boon if she herself hadn’t brought them on in revenge for naughtiness. Often, she seems like someone who doesn’t like children much.

    Still, they love her. It is Mary Poppins who puts the children to bed and unbuttons their overcoats and bathes them; Mary Poppins who, familiar to the children simply by her scent—toast and Sunlight soap—comes to their bedsides and comforts them with warm milk and quiet words. It is Mary Poppins who earns the deepest love a child has to offer: that which is bound in his trusting dependence on the person who provides his physical care. “Mary Poppins,” Michael cries in anguish the first night she has come to care for them. “You’ll never leave us, will you?” It’s the great question of childhood, the question upon which all the Mary Poppins books turn: is the person on whom a child relies for the foundation of his existence—food and warmth and love at its most elemental—about to disappear?

    “I’ll stay till the wind changes,” she tells him honestly, and at the first book’s end she leaves abruptly. Mrs. Banks is furious; the children are heartbroken. “Mary Poppins is the only person I want in the world,” Michael shrieks, throwing himself on the floor. His outburst would be doubly wounding to the modern mother: her child would be suffering and she would be reminded of the love she had forfeited to an employee. But Mrs. Banks is untroubled by either fact. Her concerns are for the disruption of her household. She and Mr. Banks have a dinner party to attend, and it’s the maid’s day off.

    The “Mary Poppins” books are transfixing and original, trading sharp drawing-room comedy with fantastical adventures and carefully rendered scenes of servant life. Travers wrote the first volume quickly, patching together the episodes of Mary Poppins and the children with those of Mary’s excursions—to her own “Fairyland,” on a private jaunt with Bert. It was likely Madge who sent the manuscript to a London publisher, Gerald Howe. He accepted it immediately, and then Travers chose an illustrator, a young woman named Mary Shepard, whose father, Ernest Shepard, had illustrated the “Winnie-the-Pooh” books. It was the beginning of a long, fruitful, and often unhappy relationship. Shepard illustrated all of the “Mary Poppins” books, though often with some bitterness: Travers allowed her almost no license in how she composed images. Travers was intimately involved in all aspects of the physical production of her books, including the color of the dust jackets and the typeface.

    Travers sent the book to press with some trepidation, fearing that a children’s book might undermine her hard-won literary cachet. She considered releasing the book anonymously, but her publisher wouldn’t hear of it. In the end, she need not have worried. The book, which came out in 1934, was not only popular with children but well received by the audience whose opinion she valued most. T. S. Eliot, who was then an editor at Faber and Faber, expressed interest; Ted Hughes later wrote to tell her that Sylvia Plath had loved “Mary Poppins.” Princess Margaret and Caroline Kennedy were both admirers. Over the course of the “Mary Poppins” run—the last book was published in 1988—the series was increasingly influenced by Travers’s study of spiritualism, myth, and the occult. But domestic scenes were always her strength. A review of the second book in the series, “Mary Poppins Comes Back,” which appeared in this magazine in 1935, observed of the main character: “To our taste, she and her little charges are at their best when they are fixed firmly on the ground, snapping tartly at each other in the very human and cluttery nursery of the Banks family.”

    It was through Diane Disney, Walt’s young daughter, that he first became aware of the “Mary Poppins” books, sometime in the early nineteen-forties. He saw their potential. The story was not in the public domain, however, and its prickly author was known to have rebuffed many Hollywood suitors, including Samuel Goldwyn. Disney, who later put his stamp on many of the classic characters from English children’s stories—Winnie-the-Pooh, Peter Pan—turned his attention to persuading Travers, who by this time was again living in London and was in and out of a tempestuous relationship with Jessie Orage, the widow of the New English Weekly’s founder, Alfred Orage. Of Disney’s courtship, Travers later recalled, “It was as if he were dangling a watch, hypnotically, before the eyes of a child.” Disney’s was a fifteen-year campaign of attention, flattery, and transcontinental telegrams and visits. At long last, Travers succumbed to a deal that gave her a hundred thousand dollars, a cut of the gross, and—unheard of at the Disney studios—script approval. She also demanded that the movie not be a cartoon, and Disney acquiesced; a 1941 strike against the studio by his animators had left him eager to explore other ways of making movies.

    The story of “Mary Poppins” depended on the premise that it was normal for a middle-class family to employ a staff, including a servant to raise the children. But to a large segment of Disney’s intended audience this idea would be bewildering or, at least, cold and unpalatable. To solve this problem, he summoned Richard and Robert Sherman to a meeting in his large, corner office on the Disney lot in Burbank. The Sherman brothers were songwriters in their early thirties who had worked on several Disney movies and television shows and had recently written the Annette Funicello hit “Tall Paul.” They had impressed Disney with the way they “thought story” when they wrote songs. He asked the brothers a question that is now a part of the lore that surrounds the making of “Mary Poppins”: “Do you boys know what a nanny is?”

    “Yeah,” Richard joked. “It’s a goat.”

    Disney realized that translating the story for an American audience would require an explanation of the role of a nanny, as well as a plot that would reward Mr. and Mrs. Banks for choosing to bring up their children themselves.

    “We had to come up with a need for Mary Poppins to come to the Banks family,” Richard Sherman told me recently. “We had to make her a necessary person.” Their first thought was to get rid of Mr. Banks. “We were going to set the thing during the Boer War and have his regiment called up,” he said. “Then you could have had a real happy ending, when he came home.” And then, Sherman said, they had an inspiration: “You could make the father emotionally absent.”

    Mr. Banks’s journey would provide the narrative arc of the film. The mother would be a matron who had lost sight of her most important calling: raising her children. She, too, would be transformed into a good mother (of the kind recognizable to an American audience in the early nineteen-sixties) through the offices of Mary Poppins, who would leave, never to return, once her work with the parents had been completed. “We made it a story about a dysfunctional family,” Sherman said. “And in comes Mary Poppins—this necessary person—to heal them.”

    By the beginning of 1961, a plot had been outlined, there were drafts for several of the songs, and a studio artist named Don DaGradi had created hundreds of sketches on dozens of storyboards to convey the look and action of the film. But Travers still needed to give the plans her blessing—a contractual obligation that suddenly seemed more daunting, because as the Disney team was finishing its work Travers’s own treatment arrived in the mail. “The more I think about it,” Walt Disney wrote her diplomatically, “the more I am inclined to feel that it would be highly advantageous for all concerned if you could come to Los Angeles and spend at least a week with us here in the studio, getting acquainted with the people who will carry the picture through to completion, and giving us the benefit of your reactions to our presentation.” He promised her a lovely trip, with opportunities to tour Disneyland in the company of a hostess and attend a private screening of “The Parent Trap.” She would, in short, undergo the final phase of hypnosis, swimming in chlorinated water beside movie stars at the hotel pool, visiting Sleeping Beauty’s castle, and—almost as an afterthought—approving the Disney script instead of her own.

    But after Disney’s years of fawning attention, Travers arrived in California expecting to be deferred to completely. Moreover, she was not as awed by Disney’s achievements as others were. Young Richard Sherman may have considered Walt Disney “the greatest storyteller—maybe the greatest man of the twentieth century,” but Pamela Travers had discussed her poetry with William Butler Yeats and shared a masthead with T. S. Eliot. She thought that “Steamboat Willie” was a fine entertainment for youngsters, but she considered most of the Disney oeuvre manipulative and false. In her mind, he traded in sentimentality and cynicism, two qualities she despised.

    Disney’s artistic impulses may be open to interpretation, but he was shrewd. “We had no idea she was coming to town,” Richard Sherman recalled, chuckling. “Walt told us two days before she came—and then he went to the ranch in Palm Springs. He said he had to read some scripts.” DaGradi and the young songwriters were left to deal with her. They could listen to Travers’s ideas, and present their own, but they had no power to agree to anything that she wanted.

    The story meeting was punishing. It lasted more than a week, and consisted of the Sherman brothers trying to sell the Disney version, while Travers, whose youthful self-confidence had gathered over the years into an oppressive self-righteousness, interrupted, corrected, bullied, and shamed them. Like countless novelists in Hollywood, Travers sought to salvage every last detail from her original. The sessions were tape-recorded, and on the tapes you can hear Travers’s booming, imperious voice in terrifying counterpoint to the Sherman brothers’ chipper young voices. “But how is that arranged?” she asks of a sequence in which the principal characters jump into the world of a sidewalk chalk drawing. “Walt Disney magic!” one of the young men replies with touching excitement.

    At last the meeting ended, and Travers headed back to London, but not before rolling nine sheets of pink stationery from the Beverly Hills Hotel into her typewriter and recounting a slew of anachronisms and unconscionable deviations from the text not sufficiently covered in the story conferences. Back home, she bombarded Disney with a second long assessment of what he was doing wrong. In the end, Travers reluctantly approved a version of the script, and production began. She continued to lodge objections, however, and, two years after signing off on the project, sent Disney another long set of notes, her intention seemingly to belittle the effort and to distance herself from it—an insurance policy against going down with the ship if the picture was a stinker. In the nineteen-eighties, she laid out her objections most pointedly to her young friend and devotee Brian Sibley. “What wand was waved to turn Mr. Banks from a bank clerk into a minor president, from an anxious, ever-loving father into a man who could cheerfully tear into pieces a poem that his children had written?” she wrote. “How could dear, demented Mrs. Banks, fussy, feminine and loving, become a suffragette? Why was Mary Poppins, already beloved for what she was—plain, vain and incorruptible—transmogrified into a soubrette?”

    The première was the first Travers had seen of the movie—she did not initially receive an invitation, but had embarrassed a Disney executive into extending one—and it was a shock. Afterward, as Richard Sherman recalled, she tracked down Disney at the after-party, which was held in a giant white tent in the parking lot adjoining the Chinese Theatre. “Well,” she said loudly. “The first thing that has to go is the animation sequence.” Disney looked at her coolly. “Pamela,” he replied, “the ship has sailed.” And then he strode past her, toward a throng of well-wishers, and left her alone, an aging woman in a satin gown and evening gloves, who had travelled more than five thousand miles to attend a party where she was not wanted.

    “Walt Disney’s Mary Poppins” won five Academy Awards. After the movie’s release, P. L. Travers became a cottage industry, something she loved and chafed against in equal measure. By then, children’s literature had become a legitimate academic field in America, particularly popular at women’s colleges, and Smith and Radcliffe invited her to be a writer in residence. It was a mixed blessing. She relished university life and the opportunities for pontificating that it provided, but she found that the kind of young women who studied children’s books were nothing at all like the girl who had escaped from Australia half a lifetime ago. She took to hosting louche at-homes in her dormitory apartment, sprawling on the couch barefoot, clad in a loosely belted kimono and coming to life only if a male student or professor wandered into the session.

    Richard Sherman believes that Travers’s opinion of the movie changed depending on her audience. In private letters, including some to journalists, she mercilessly criticized Disney’s lack of subtlety and what she called his emasculation of characters, but she habitually attached a nervous caveat that her remarks were not for publication. (Disney, she claimed, had once reprimanded her for being ungrateful.) To this day, her estate watchfully guards this correspondence.

    As much as Travers seethed about her experience in Hollywood, she couldn’t resist the thought of a return. According to Sibley, she spent her eighties working on a treatment for a movie sequel. In 1989, she decided to sell her meticulously preserved and organized papers, including a file of annotated carbons of letters she had written to Walt Disney. She had hoped to place the archive with a major American collection, where the curious could, at last, learn her genuine response to the film. But the papers didn’t find a buyer, and the offering was eventually repackaged as a collection belonging to “the best-known and best-selling Australian author” and sold to the Mitchell Library, part of the State Library of New South Wales, in Sydney. They are stored there in twenty-eight manuscript boxes, not eighty miles from the house where Margaret Goff tried to kill herself.

    In 1994, two years before Travers’s death, she made a final attempt to control her legacy, selling the theatrical rights to “Mary Poppins” to the producer Cameron Mackintosh. (His “big four” are “Cats,” “Les Misérables,” “The Phantom of the Opera,” and “Miss Saigon.”) As Mackintosh said, “She realized I was her best chance.” Last December, after Mackintosh and Thomas Schumacher, the president of Disney’s theatrical division—his team produced the stage version of “The Lion King”—negotiated a co-producing deal, “Mary Poppins” opened at the Prince Edward Theatre in London’s West End. (It will come to Broadway next fall.) The musical, with a book by Julian Fellowes, is a strange and beautiful thing, containing an astonishing variety of moods and distinguished by a faithful rendering of the books’ brisk and sophisticated comic sensibility. It ends with a crowd-pleaser: Mary Poppins departs the Banks family by soaring up and into the rafters, borne aloft by her umbrella and by the forgiving enthusiasm of the audience, which often includes ample representation from the under-ten set. She has been more punitive and frightening than Julie Andrews ever was, but she has nonetheless managed to evoke the powerful emotions—in particular, children’s deep fear of abandonment—that have always been at the story’s core. On one occasion, when the beloved nanny was making her getaway, a middle-aged man was heard to cry out in anguish, “Mary Poppins, don’t leave!” ♦

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    Katie Aquino

    Writing, Grammar, Literature, ACT Prep
    Education: M.Ed.,Stanford University

    Katie is an enthusiastic teacher who strives to make connections between literature and student’s every day lives.

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    Compare and Contrast Essay

    Katie Aquino

    Katie Aquino

    Writing, Grammar, Literature, ACT Prep
    Education: M.Ed.,Stanford University

    Katie is an enthusiastic teacher who strives to make connections between literature and student’s every day lives.

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    Compare and contrast essays identify the similarities and highlight the differences between two topics. When writing compare and contrast essays, it’s best to select topics, pre-write by developing categories, develop a thesis and organize the essay. With compare and contrast essays, point-by-point essays are guided by category while block essays are guided by topic.

    compare contrast essay point by point block Venn diagram

    Let’s talk about compare/contrast essays. Now, I find these to be some of the most difficult types of essays to write because it’s hard to know where you’re going and exactly how you’re going to tell the similarities and differences between two things. So a couple of vocabulary things to straighten out first. When you’re given an essay, if you’re asked just to compare, all they want to know is the similarities, so compare means how they’re the same. If you’re asked to contrast two things, then you’re being asked to tell people how they are different. So just be aware, when you’re doing compare/contrast, sometimes you may be asked to compare or contrast, sometimes you may be asked to do both. So you’ve got to really be aware of your prompt there.
    Here are the steps that I tend to go through when I’m working compare/contrast; the first thing that I do is select my topics and make sure I understand the task. So that is selecting which two things I’m going to use in my essay and then understanding am I being asked to compare, contrast or do both of those. So that’s the first important step. And then the next step is to pre-write and develop categories. So obviously if we’re talking about how things are similar and different, we are going to start categorizing the ways that they are similar or different. For instance, if we are comparing pizzas, we might say crust is one category that we’re going to look at, sauce might be another and the variety of toppings might be another. So you can start thinking about what those categories should be.
    My two favorite modes of pre-writing for compare/contrast is a Venn diagram and you may remember that from math class, the two circles that run together, you can put topic one here, topic two here and then how they’re different in here and how they’re similar in the middle, so that’s one. I’m also a chart person so I don’t mind chart especially if I’ve got a lot of categories and my chart might look something like this and I will have a row for each particular category. So crust, sauce and then I divide it down the middle and I seal those in. So it depends on how you like to look at things, I tend to be a little bit more organized so I like the chart the best but after I’ve got all these ideas down here, now I want to develop a thesis. And this is really the critical part in compare/contrast because it’s really easy to say, "Well, Monical’s pizza has thin crust and Giodonalds pizza has thick crust, but you want to make sure that you’re answering the ‘so what?’ question. So you’ve got to come to some sort of conclusion, it’s not just about saying how things are similar or how they are different but why is that important. So maybe Giodonalds is a better place to entertain people or to take people from out of town because you can get thin crust pizza anywhere. Whatever it is you’ve got to come to that conclusion so you can insert it in your thesis and then after that you’ve got to think about how you’re going to organize your essay. And let’s take a look at the two different ways that you can organize a compare/contrast essay.
    Now, the first one is point by point. And essentially what that means is it’s going to be guided by those categories that you created. So you’re going to have multiple sections of your paper; one for each of the categories that you have and in each section you’re going to use examples from both topics. So you might talk about crust here, and in this paragraph or set of paragraphs you’re going to talk about the crust at Giodonalds and you’re going to talk about the crust at Monical’s. And then you move on to the next category and so on and so forth until you’ve talked about all your categories and given all your examples. The important thing to remember if you choose point by point is that you’re going to want to make sure you do analysis within each category; so once you talk about crust, you’re going to have to come to a conclusion about crust, once you talk about sauce, come to that conclusion that all goes back to your thesis. So the analysis goes throughout.
    Now, some of you guys may choose block formatting. And block formatting simply means that it’s guided by topic rather than category. So you’re going to start with an introduction and then you’re going to introduce topic one. So in this case it might be Monical’s, which is my favorite kind of pizza. And what you’re going to do in this area, and it could consist of multiple paragraphs, is you’re going to give multiple examples from just that one topic. So the first part of my paper is going to be focused on Monical’s whereas the second will be focused on Giodonalds, and I’m going to give multiple examples about Giodonalds here. One thing to know then is because you’re not doing much analysis inside these paragraphs because you’re sticking to just one topic, you’re conclusion has got to include your analysis where you’re really coming down to that ‘so what?’ question you’re answering now, the one that you answered in your thesis statement you’re repeating down here. So those are the two ways to organize compare/contrast. Make sure again that you understand the task, know are you being asked to compare or contrast or do both and hopefully this will help you get started.

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    ★How to Write Excellent &quot



    Top-notch study tips for A+ students

    How to Write Excellent “Why I Need This Scholarship” Essays

    1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars ( votes: 14 )

    By Julia R.

    • essay format
    • students’ budget

    Summer is the time of sunny sky, sunsets on the beach… and scholarship essays.
    Don’t seem to go together well, do they?

    Have you already guessed it?

    Even though it can be hard to motivate yourself to write an essay instead of lying in the sun, there’s still a good reason to get yourself together.

    That reason is your wellbeing during the year that follows.

    Scholarship essay is, without any doubt, on the list of things that can significantly affect your life (and if you’re struggling with your scholarship writing, you can always find help here ).

    College admission boards and scholarship committees are looking for new effective ways to discover talented students who can easily and successfully communicate their ideas in writing (that’s why it is important to proofread your essay by Grammarly ).

    Scholarship essays have become an effective tool in this search. Even for students who want to study abroad. To help you out, we have conducted a thorough research came up with this definitive guide on scholarship essays.

    So, what’s inside?

    First, we’ll explain the whole point of writing this kind of essay and describe what components it should include to bring you success. Next, we’ll lead you step by step through the process of writing itself. You’ll learn exactly what you need to do to create the perfect scholarship essay.

    And that’s not all.

    We’ll also discuss the best choice of words when writing an essay and explain how you should create effective headlines. You’ll also get to check out a couple of essay examples, as well as a list of do’s and don’ts that will make the writing process even easier for you.

    Last but not least, we’ll give a list of scholarships that you can apply to—so make sure to read our guide through to the very end!

    But enough introductions, let’s move on to the most interesting part. It’s time to learn what scholarship essays are all about.

    Before Starting to Write…

    There’s one important thing you need to know before even starting to gather material for your scholarship letter.

    And here’s what it is.

    You need to understand the real purpose of why you are writing a scholarship essay. Apart from that, you need to see the difference between phrases like “Why I Need This Scholarship” and “Why I Deserve This Scholarship.”

    At a glance, there seems to be no difference between those two.

    After all, you are going to write a mere essay. And it is probably not that important, which one of the titles you choose, right?

    Still, if you look at the two titles closer, you will see a slight difference between a “Why I Need This Scholarship” essay and a “Why I Deserve the Scholarship” essay.

    Source: https://admission.enrollment.cmu.edu/pages/financial-aid-statistics

    Obviously, the difference lies in the two words “need” and “deserve”.

    So, let’s look at what sets apart these similarly titled essays in more detail.

    “Why I Need This Scholarship” essay

    If you’re using the word need in your essay, it will sound like you are begging for your scholarship.

    And that may be true in reality.

    However, do you want to sound like a beggar?

    Your success will heavily depend on the language and tone you use in your essay. However, you must be aware that something like “Please, give me this scholarship. I need it. My family cannot afford to pay for my education, and I want to get a degree so much” will not make a good impression.

    “Why I Deserve This Scholarship” essay

    Source: http://time.com/money/4132391/winning-scholarships-help/

    Writing an application letter that explains why you deserve a scholarship also shows that you are asking for it.

    But…

    When you’re sure you deserve the scholarship, you will sound much stronger and more convincing.

    Support your argument with a logical and detailed explanation of exactly why you deserve this scholarship. Tell about what makes you unique among other candidates. Describe your main strengths to persuade your readers that you’re the one who’s worthy of getting the money. It’s common to hold scholarship essay contests, so you need to do your best to win the competition.

    With the right focus, writing a successful scholarship essay comes down to just following the prompts and completing all the necessary steps.

    And that’s exactly what you’re going to learn in the next part of our guide.

    Writing Scholarships Step by Step

    Every essay—regardless of its type, purpose, or topic—has an individual writing process that consists of distinct steps.

    And a scholarship essay is no exception.

    What’s the purpose of this type of essay?

    This is a convincing paper that tells a college admission board a short story about why you are the right person to give a scholarship to.

    What are the stages of writing it?

    Let’s find out how to start right now.

    1. Gathering ideas

    To increase the chances of your essay being successful, analyze the institution you are applying to. Additional background knowledge will give you more confidence.

    With a significant number of future college freshmen applying at the same time, it’s good to know that you have at least some advantage.

    First things first—you should choose an appropriate topic to illustrate your unique qualities (unless the committee has already selected the topic for you).

    Ideas that you can use as a topic for your essay include extracurricular activities, your major accomplishments, challenges and other aspects of your life. Talk about anything that you think can make you stand out among the other applicants for this scholarship.

    Once you’ve selected the topic and established your goal, you need to outline the story you’re about to tell. Without a well-thought-out plan, it’s going to be difficult to keep the narration logical and straightforward and avoid getting lost in your thoughts.

    Here’s a quick tip from us.

    Take your time to prepare for writing this essay.

    Source: http://www.mytimemanagement.com/time-management-statistics.html

    With a scholarship, you have no option to fail. It’s not a regular class essay that you can redo to get a better grade.

    In fact, there will be no grades at all. And if you mess up, you won’t get another chance until the next year (depending on the specific scholarship you’re applying to).

    That’s why you have to do your absolute best. Discuss the essay with your friends and family. It is hard to write an ode to yourself, so you can request a bit of writing help from people who know you well.

    2. Writing the introduction

    The introduction is the face of your paper. Capture the interest of the committee. Because that’s the only way to get them engaged in your story.

    And once you do that—you’ll have every chance to receive your scholarship.

    In the introduction, you can start from the beginning, middle, or end of your story.

    Make it brief, informative and descriptive.

    Don’t use long sentences for the introduction. You may leave that for other parts of your essay.

    Here’s what’s important.

    Be optimistic. Think about your attitude. You like people who have a positive point of view. The same thing works with the committee.

    So, there’s no need to add drama to your paper.

    3. Crafting the main body of your essay

    This is the part of the paper that has all the “meat.” The body of your essay contains the main argument.

    The body paragraphs should include the information on your life, accomplishments, and plans for the future—anything that the committee might find interesting and persuasive.

    Focus on family values and the importance of academic success.

    Be sure to leave enough time to write this part. When finished, go over it again to see if you’ve left out anything significant.

    Some of the main tips are as follows:

    • Don’t try to summarize. Instead, provide as many details as possible to your story. You need to make it compelling, captivating, and convincing.
    • Don’t be impersonal. It’s all about you. And it’s not only the story itself that should be focused on you. It’s even better if you can add a couple of personal touches to your writing style, too.
    • Don’t complain. Remember that strong personalities struggle, and avoid whining. You also have to keep a positive attitude. Even if your story describes sad or negative events, it’s a good opportunity to show how you managed to deal with them.

    4. Wrapping everything up in the conclusion

    Source: https://aso-resources.une.edu.au/academic-writing-course/paragraphs/conclusion-paragraphs/

    In this part of the essay, you’ll stress the significance of your story and why it’s necessary to give the scholarship to you.

    There is only one main rule for the conclusion—don’t try to sum everything up.

    Your scholarship essay is short as it is. So, there is nothing to go over and review, as the memory is still fresh.

    To write a proper conclusion, just put extra emphasis on the points of your story that you consider to be the most important.

    There’s nothing else to say about writing a conclusion.

    To give you a final tip, let us remind you that it’s essential to proofread your essay. As we mentioned earlier, you won’t get the chance to redo it right away—so you have to do everything you can to nail it on the first try.

    Choosing the Right Vocabulary for Your Scholarship Essay

    A great, well-considered story about yourself is only one part of your scholarship essay’s success.

    What’s the other?

    It’s your language and the vocabulary you use.

    You have to choose your words carefully, as they can make a huge impact on your essay’s overall success.

    Here are three core principles you can follow to filter out the wrong words:

    • Sincerity. ‘A good candidate’ and ‘well-prepared’ is much better than ‘fantastic background’ and ‘exceptional skills’.
    • Positive views. ‘Well-prepared’ can be a good substitute for ‘struggling academically’.
    • Conciseness. Delete ‘very’, ‘strongly’ and ‘literally’ from your papers and try to find stronger one-word synonyms, instead.

    At the same time, don’t try to show off your vocabulary just for the sake of it. Instead, use it as a tool to help you craft your story . A story that will earn you that scholarship.

    After getting into the right mindset, try using the following words to brighten up your vocabulary.

    • To support your point with additional information
      Furthermore, moreover, similarly, what’s more, likewise, as well as, coupled with, to say nothing of, not to mention
    • To give a general explanation
      In other words, in order to, to that end, that is to say, to put it another way
    • To develop contrast
      Yet, then again, that said, on the other hand, by contrast, however, in comparison, having said that
    • To show importance
      Importantly, significantly, notably
    • To add acknowledgment
      In light of, despite this, provided that, given, with this in mind, nevertheless, nonetheless, notwithstanding
    • To draw a summary
      All things considered, in conclusion, compelling, above all

    It’s fair to say that the words mentioned above aren’t the only ones you can use.

    If you think that a particular word is suitable for your essay—use it without doubt!

    There’s just one more thing to consider, though.

    While thesauruses and dictionaries can help a lot when writing various research papers, it’s better not to use them when writing a scholarship essay.

    The main reason is that you shouldn’t use words whose meaning you don’t know well. This will only show your insecurity, which is definitely not good if you’re aiming to receive a scholarship.

    Sample Scholarship Essays and Essay Headlines

    Of course, no amount of theory can compare to a nicely composed example.

    Instead of reading endless tips and suggestions and trying to remember all that information, just take a look at an already-written work. It’ll give you an idea of what the finished essay should look like.

    We couldn’t deprive you of this excellent opportunity. So, we’ve decided to provide you with a couple of sources where you can find these examples. They will give you a clearer understanding of how you should approach the writing of your scholarship essay.

    • Scholarship paper examples from Custom-Writing
    • Sample scholarship essays
    • How to write a scholarship essay—examples
    • Scholarship application essay example

    There’s a whole set of benefits you can get from checking out sample scholarship essays:

    • You’ll learn the basics of this type of work—including the required structure, length, number of paragraphs, formatting, and more.
    • It can help you overcome writer’s block, especially when you can’t even come up with a topic. Looking at a couple of examples can give you an idea of what your essay should be about.
    • Any writing task requires research, and the same is true of scholarship essays. When the example topic is similar to yours, you’ll get some inspiration for ideas yourself! It might even be like you were searching for scholarship essay examples about yourself. That’s how similar these essays can be sometimes.
    • Checking out essay examples can boost your creativity. You can borrow some of the techniques from the sample or even improve upon what you’ve seen in your own work.
    • You’ll get a good reminder to pay attention to grammar, which unfortunately is still a problem in many essays. An example essay can also demonstrate what sentence structure you should have, how to properly insert quotes, and how to deal with punctuation. This exercise will be especially useful for scholarships for international students whose native language isn’t English.

    But that’s not even all.

    You should also think about a strong title.

    This is the first hook that will grab your readers’ attention.

    You can even start the whole writing process by choosing your headline. The headline can determine what story you’re going to tell and how you’ll do it. Let’s explore a couple of ideas about what your essay headline could be.

    Remember, you don’t have to use these ideas exactly as they are. Instead, use this list as inspiration, and you’ll easily come up with a topic of your own.

    • Previous scholarships and leadership roles.
    • Personal contributions to clubs, associations, civic organizations.
    • Special knowledge, skills, research projects.
    • Prior experiences that have motivated you.
    • Previous experiences that show your ability to face challenges.
    • Academic and career goals.
    • Personal financial circumstances (only if they reveal financial hardships).
    • My attempts at entrepreneurship in high school.
    • Turning dreams into achievements.
    • What I learned from my school teachers.
    • Role models who influenced my future.
    • Finding new people, inspiration, and ideas.

    Scholarship Essay Dos and Donts

    We’ve already covered quite a lot in this guide.

    But…

    There’s always more to talk about.

    For instance, what are the most common do’s and don’ts of writing scholarship essays?

    Let’s find out!

    Do’s of writing scholarship essay

    Starting with a strong statement is important. Imagine that the committee reads only this first sentence. So, avoid beating around the bush wasting your chances and get down to business.

    Start from your achievements, not problems—set the optimistic tone. For example, “My academic accomplishments and persistence have always helped me to work towards my goals.” Don’t begin by stating that you’re seeking financial assistance.

    Make it energetic and persuasive—use active verbs: work, achieve, accomplish.

    Save your readers’ time—start with the most important claims.

    Thoroughly research the scholarships you’re applying to. This will give you an understanding of which key ideas your essay should cover.

    Think about your essay’s transitions. Arrange the paragraphs of your essay in such a way that your readers will be fully immersed in your story.

    Choose your words carefully, and remove all the unnecessary ones. Remember that you have a tight word count.

    Make your essay unique—from the headline and the thesis statement to the story itself and its conclusion. Avoid using clichés and general phrases as much as possible. Even if the scholarship you’re applying for is less competitive than others, you still need to make the most of your essay.

    Don’ts of writing scholarship essay

    • Avoid irrelevant info—inappropriate quotes, too general or obvious phrases.
    • Don’t show your uncertainty.
    • Avoid exaggerations or unnecessary pathos. Such as “chemistry is my only passion” or “my never-ending quest for knowledge”.
    • Don’t ignore feedback. Never miss out on the opportunity to have someone else check your essay in the first place.
    • At the same time, don’t allow anyone else to get too involved in the creative process of your essay. It’s still ultimately about you.
    • If you’re applying for multiple scholarships, you shouldn’t assume that one essay will fit them all. It may be tempting to use the same essay since the work might be unpublished, but that really isn’t a good idea. It’s always best to tailor your essay to each scholarship you’re applying to.
    • Never rush your essay writing. Make sure you have enough time to write a first draft. Leave some time for a couple revisions, too. You can revise the essay yourself, and then have someone else check it. That’s at least two revisions.
    • Don’t forget to check the required scholarship essay format in order to make it right.

    Easy Scholarships to Apply for in 2017

    It would be unfair to give you all these tips on how to write a scholarship essay and then leave you without any actual scholarship sources.

    But that’s all about to change right now.

    Wondering where and how to get a scholarship? It’s easy!

    You should apply for scholarships online. You don’t even need to use a search engine to find one.

    Here’s a list of scholarships you can easily apply for in 2017 (they’re going to be available later, too, so make sure to check out the links even if 2018 is approaching).

    1. Courage To Grow Scholarship

    This is a $500 scholarship given on the last day of every month. It’s a great opportunity for those in financial need. High school juniors and seniors or college students with a minimum GPA of 2.5 can apply. The application requires a 250-word essay on why you should receive this scholarship.

    2. Cappex Easy College Money Scholarship

    This scholarship awards a $1,000 prize every month. It has no GPA requirement and is open to any undergraduate. To apply for the scholarship, you have to create a profile and describe your extracurricular, volunteer, leadership, or other free-time activities.

    3. Course Hero Scholarships

    This $5,000 scholarship is given every month. All it takes to apply for this scholarship is to fill out the registration form and answer the question of the month. Winning depends on the answer given by applicants.

    4. Bachus & Schanker, LLC Scholarship

    This is a semiannual scholarship with a $2,000 award, designed for high school students accepted to a four-year university or university students with a GPA of 3.0 or higher. To win, you have to write a short essay about the Seventh Amendment and how it influences your life.

    5. Americanism Essay Contest

    This annual scholarship offers a main award of $5,000 and 3 additional prizes for first, second, and third places ($2,500, $1,500, and $1,000 respectively). It includes contests that require a short essay to be written on a specific topic with a deadline of December 1st. You should also pick an FRA US department sponsor.

    6. Innovation in Education Scholarship

    This is a scholarship of $500 given every month. To apply for it, you must be creative by designing an innovative project and describing it in a cover letter.

    Guaranteed, there are many more scholarships to choose from. And not only for students in the USA but also for those in Europe.

    We’ve only given you a couple of options, so you know that there are many simple ones out there

    With a little research, you can easily find the scholarship that fits you best (something like the AVVO scholarship program or Chegg monthly, for instance). There are even scholarships with essays for those who play football or basketball and for those pursuing a masters degree.

    Tell us about your results! Or share interesting scholarships you’ve found in the comments.

    But for now, we wish you luck with all your essay writing!

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    Comments (2)


    Cancel reply

    • Annett Fr. Annett Fr. Posted:

      Sound ideas on writing “Why I Need This Scholarship” essays. They are the key to writing a good scholarship essay and getting financial aid!

      Reply

    • Ann Willis Ann Willis Posted:

      This is great advice on writing my “Why I Need This Scholarship” essay, and I used it when worked on my assignment. Really helpful blog!

      Reply

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    ★In Defense of the 5-Paragraph Essay

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    Home // Student Life // Rethinking the Five-Paragraph Essay: Dos and Don’ts for Excellent Essays

    Student Life

    Rethinking the Five-Paragraph Essay: Dos and Don’ts for Excellent Essays

    Chegg

    Many teachers have students start out writing essays using a five-paragraph structure because it’s a simple way to structure a paper—an introduction, your top three points to make, and a conclusion that ties it all together. Unfortunately, more likely than not, the five-paragraph structure will be more of a hindrance to getting your point across than a helper. Collegiate and professional writing almost always strays from the five paragraph structure that your teacher forced upon you in Freshman year English. Here’s why:

    Some topics just don’t fit into three sub points

    Let’s take for example, an argumentative essay on the Miranda Supreme Court case. In its decision, the court says that the Miranda warnings are required for cases of “custodial interrogation.” Therefore there must be both custody and interrogation. In order to write an essay on the Miranda decision, you only have two main points to argue, so there’s no reason why you should force a third paragraph. Similarly, you might construct an argument that needs four supporting paragraphs, like an essay on William Wordsworth’s “I wandered lonely as a cloud,” which is a four-stanza poem. These are just two examples, but you can easily see why sometimes arguments just don’t break down neatly into three subtopics.

    Some sub points are bigger than others

    If you look at how much smaller this sub point is than the one above, it’s pretty clear that one above deserves a full paragraph and the other does not. An unbalanced five paragraph essay looks sloppy—a little like this part of the post.

    If you’re moving away from a five paragraph essay format, you’ll still want to use some of the thought processes that were drilled into you in High School. The first step is, of course, to think of your thesis; what’s the main point you want to argue? From there, you can move into flushing out your argument through expertly crafted paragraphs.

    How to structure a paragraph

    A paragraph, by definition, should be structured around an idea central to supporting your main thesis or argument. An easy way to structure a thesis is through a list, though there are other, more elegant ways. If you use a list then you already know what topics your body paragraphs will be in a general form.

    Online Writing Tutoring

    One example of a very good outline template. Credits to NewView Options

    Examples are always helpful for illustrating, so if you were writing an English essay on The Great Gatsby, your thesis could be something like: “F. Scott Fitzgerald uses symbolism, figurative language, and Gatsby’s disappointment to criticize the American Dream.” Now say, you are writing about the symbols that Fitzgerald uses in the novel to criticize the American dream, you would not want to structure your entire paragraph around three different symbols that mean different things. Rather than talking about the Green Light and the Eyes of Doctor T.J. Ecklebert in the same massive, page-long paragraph, break it up—one (or multiple) paragraphs devoted to each symbol. After all, each one is an idea and thus deserves it’s own paragraph. Then within each paragraph, use evidence along with analysis to support your thesis. You can start out with interpretive claims (e.g. “the Eyes of Doctor T.J. Eckleburt represent the eyes of God”) and then back it up with specific examples.

    In general, here are the DOs and DON’Ts of structure when writing essays :

    Do

    • Link your evidence to the overall idea to prove the thesis (it also helps the essay flow better and make transitions seamless).

    • Use specific topic sentences—it’s ok to have paragraphs with only one piece of evidence as long as what you have to say about it is important.

    • Keep related topics close together. The reader doesn’t want to have to flip three pages back to remember what you wrote about earlier.

    • Introduce sufficient background before your analysis.

    • Outline and re-outline your topics and points until it all makes sense.

    • Include analysis! Usually papers that score low do so because they spend too much time on background and don’t include enough analysis.

    Don’t

    • Put two ideas in the same paragraph (even if they are slightly similar).

    • Have a paragraph that’s too long. If it’s longer than 3/4s to a full page, it’s probably a run-on paragraph.

    • Use such advanced sentence structure that no one can understand you. Simple sentences are easy to read and understand.

    • Judge an essay by its length (alone).

    Summary: Developing a paragraph should be as natural as an idea. Essays are, after all, just a way of communicating human thought into an easy to read format. Let the paragraphs and structure of your essay adapt to the size and power of your ideas.

    Chegg

    MEET THE AUTHOR

    Chegg

    Chegg, the student hub, is transforming the way millions of students learn by connecting them to the people and tools needed to succeed in school. We work hard, and play hard.

    As the leading student-first connected learning platform, Chegg is making higher education more affordable, more accessible, and more successful for students.

    For more information, visit www.chegg.com/.

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    • Just Visiting

      A blog by John Warner, author of the story collection Tough Day for the Army, and a novel, The Funny Man, on teaching, writing and never knowing when you’re going to be asked to leave.

    Title

    Kill the 5-Paragraph Essay

    There may be no greater enemy to quality writing than the 5-paragraph essay.

    By

    John Warner

    February 22, 2016

    Comments

     

     

     

    Follow @biblioracle

     

    Let’s just go ahead and kill the 5-paragraph essay at all levels, everywhere.

    Seriously. Let’s end it. We can have essays that happen to be 5-paragraphs long, but there shall be no more “5-paragraph essays.”

    That just about everyone reading this is well-familiar with the 5-paragraph essay is a testament to why it needs to be retired, and by retired, I mean killed dead, double-tap zombie-style, lest it rise again.

    The 5-paragraph essay is indeed a genre, but one that is entirely uncoupled from anything resembling meaningful work when it comes to developing a fully mature writing process. If writing is like exercise, the 5-paragraph essay is more Ab Belt than sit-up.

    A significant portion of the opening weeks of my first-year writing class is spent “deprogramming” students from following the “rules” they’ve been taught in order to succeed on the 5-paragraph essay and opening them up to the world of “choice” that confronts them when tackling “writing related problems” that they face in college and beyond. They cannot hope to develop unless and until we first undo the damage done.

    There will be some who want to defend the 5-paragraph essay as “training wheels” for the type of academic writing that will come later. You’ve got to know the rules to break the rules, right?

    Not really. At least not these rules, and the way students learn them. While a well-done 5-paragraph essay may exhibit some traits that we value in other forms of writing – engaging opening, clear focus/thesis, transitions between ideas, general coherence – the writing of a 5-paragraph essay is primarily approached from a tactical angle, and occurs outside a genuine rhetorical situation (audience/purpose/message). Because of this, students write from a list of rules handed down by their teachers, starting with the form itself (five paragraphs: intro, body, body, body, conclusion), and including specifics like the use of “good” transition words, never using “I” or contractions, and even limits on the number of sentences per paragraph or words per sentence.

    The result is a Frankenstein’s monster of an “essay,” something that looks vaguely essay-like, but is clearly also not as it lurches and moans across the landscape, frightening the villagers.

    More troublesome is what the 5-paragraph essay does to the writing process. The act of writing is primarily treated as a performance meant to impress a teacher or score well on a standardized exam. It fosters a number of counterproductive behaviors, not the least of which is the temptation to write in “pseudo-academic B.S.,” a lot of academic-seeming sound and fury signifying nothing, which becomes a very hard habit for students to break [1] .

    If the 5-paragraph essay were good training for writing college-level academic essays, you wouldn’t hear so much carping from college instructors about the quality of writing from their students.

    Mature writers need to navigate choices rooted in genuine rhetorical situations. They must consider audience, purpose, and message. The 5-paragraph essay requires none of this.

    Kill it dead.

    But what should we replace it with?

    The most important essay I ever wrote was in 3rd grade.

    My teacher, Mrs. Goldman, told us we needed to write directions for making a peanut butter and jelly sandwich. She never used the word “essay” because that would’ve been meaningless to us, but this was actually a “process” or “how-to” essay, and to write a good one, you need to think very carefully about what you’re telling your audience.

    We were 3rd graders, so of course, we didn’t do this. The extent to which we didn’t became apparent next class when Mrs. Goldman brought in the necessary supplies for making a peanut butter and jelly sandwich and then told us we had to make our sandwiches exactly according to our directions.

    If you forgot to mention that you needed bread on which to spread the peanut butter, you smeared it on the plate. If you wrote to spread peanut butter on a slice of bread, but didn’t say to use a knife, we were instructed to use our hands.

    I don’t think anyone in the class managed to create an edible sandwich, but we had a lot of fun laughing at the attempts, and the memory is indelible. That day, I learned that writers need to be careful with their words because if someone is asked to follow them, things can go very very wrong.

    Mrs. Goldman was teaching us a number of different things, genre awareness, audience, structure and sequencing. None of it had anything to do with a standardized assessment. We were solving a writing-related problem. Most of all, we were absorbing the lesson that above all, writing is done for audiences.

    Even the old-fashioned “book report” is superior to the 5-paragraph essay as a tool for developing writers and writing, as it embraces audience and purpose, i.e., tell someone about the book you just read and whether or not they should read it too. A book report is the solution to a genuine writing-related problem.

    The steady encroachment of standardized assessment on education and learning has only exacerbated the damage of the 5-paragraph essay. If the 5-paragraph essay was only one genre among many, we could safely contain the contagion, but as it is the easiest form to assess, it is now the monolith at the center of the English classroom.

    It is a spirit killer for both students and teachers. For those who are fans of so-called “accountability” in education, it is actually the tool that allows the worst teachers to hide amongst the good, as it’s incredibly easy to game with hacks, tips, and tricks.

    So let’s free ourselves from the 5-paragraph essay. Yes, the aftermath may be a little messy and the testing companies will have to think of something else – a feature, not a bug as far as I’m concerned – but we might just realize that good writing requires a lot of curiosity, and at least a little bit of freedom.

    At this point, what do we have to lose? 

    Follow @biblioracle

    [1] Ask your students how many of them do the “right-click” thesaurus trick on their essays, where they swap in 10 dollar words suggested by their software in order to raise the apparent sophistication of the vocabulary in the essay.

    Read more by

    John Warner

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    Best MBA Programs in 2018: The Complete List (Online  Campus)

    Choosing to pursue an MBA degree is the ideal way to advance in your career while continuing to manage other responsibilities outside of an education. Obtaining an MBA is becoming highly useful and beneficial in the business world. There are many high-quality universities that offer online and on-campus MBA programs, but it’s extremely important that prospective students find the best value schools that suits their needs.

    Online programs deliver the same quality of teaching through a different platform. If you are looking to advance within a current job or are seeking higher business roles and positions, an online MBA is a promising option to achieve those goals. When looking into programs be attentive of how long the program will take, requirements, specializations, and other factors to ensure that the program is right for you.

    MBA programs online contain a unique, individualized element that allows students to customize schedules, goals and other personal preferences. Additional education online is highly recommended for independent learners who desire to set their own pace for course completion.

    Here are the Best MBA Programs of 2018

    1. Mississippi State University

    Mississippi State University MBA

    MSU has designed its curriculum for its MBA program to be useful and relevant to today’s concepts. The program emphasizes management, marketing, finance, economics, and quantitative analysis. The online MBA requires 27 hours of core MBA classes and an additional 3 hours of electives of the student’s choice.

    • Location: Starkville, Mississippi
    • Estimated Tuition: $11,010
    • Credit Hours: 30

     

    2. East Carolina University

    East Carolina University MBA

    East Carolina University creates a customized experience to fit the needs of individual students. The MBA program’s purpose is to help accelerate a student’s career. ECU is known for its flexibility and student assistance to help students get into the right classes that they need for programs. An MBA degree will guarantee valuable knowledge in theory and practice of business management.

    • Location: Greenville, North Carolina
    • Estimated Tuition: $12,351
    • Credit Hours: 33-54
    • Online MBA programs in NC

     

    3. University of Florida (Hough)

    University of Florida Hough online MBA programs

     

    The University of Florida (Hough) is a high ranking graduate school of business, having frequented top business school lists on Forbes. On a normal track students can finish the program in just  2 years, but for qualifying students that have finished their business undergraduate within 7 years of admittance, can fast-track the program and finish in only 1 year. Like most MBA programs, University of Florida requires 2 years of professional work experience before admission to the MBA program. The average GMAT score for students admitted is around 584.

    • Location: Gainesville, Florida
    • Estimated Tuition: $15,921 (Florida resident)
    • Credit Hours: 30

     

    4. Tennessee Technological University

    The MBA program offered through Tennessee Technological University allows students from all different academic backgrounds to pursue without disrupting their career path. Both full time and part time options are available with many courses to choose from that may interest a student. Through methods, simulations, and research projects students will feel prepared to make larger advances in their career. The tuition assessments below reflect the basic graduate level fees and tuitions for full-time students (12 credit hours) for Fall 2017, Spring 2018, and Summer 2018 unless otherwise noted. For more information regarding Tennessee Tech’s MBA costs and financial aid, please click here .

    • Location: Cookeville, Tennessee
    • Estimated Fall/Spring Tuition (In-state): $5,680.50
    • Estimated Summer Tuition (In-state): $6,444.50
    • Estimated Fall/Spring Tuition (Out-of-state): $13,230.50
    • Estimated Summer Tuition (Out-of-state): $15,156.50
    • Estimated Online Program Tuition (In-state): $688 (per credit hour)
    • Estimated Online Program Tuition (Out-of-state): $1,414 (per credit hour)
    • Credit Hours: 30

     

    5. Ball State University

    Ball State University MBA

    Ball State University is student-driven, motivated and goal oriented. The MBA program offered through The Miller College of Business is determined to help students reach their full potential. Ball State’s faculty is highly qualified and noted among US News World and Report. Students can begin the program in fall, spring, and summer either part or full time. The University is also known for helping its students prepare for and land jobs

    • Location: Muncie, Indiana
    • Estimated Tuition: $15,700
    • Credit Hours: 30-33

     

    6. Arkansas State University

    Arkansas State University MBA

    Arkansas State University’s online MBA is known for its high-quality education designed for students with varied academic and professional backgrounds. The courses are both comprehensive and challenging to test students to the best of their abilities and push them to apply the skills that they have learned. Students can also choose supply chain management or finance as a concentration within the degree.

    • Location: Jonesboro, Arkansas
    • Estimated Tuition: $20,130
    • Credit Hours: 33

     

    7. Union University

    Union University MBA

    As one of the top regional schools in the southeast, Union University promotes its solid ethics and Christ-centered learning. Union’s MBA program is flexible, valuable, and versatile. The program can be completed in 12,18, or 24 months depending on different student’s schedules. The program focuses on positive business influences and organizational decision making.

    • Location: Jackson, Tennessee
    • Estimated Tuition: $20,700
    • Credit Hours: 36

     

    8. Ohio Dominican University

    Ohio Dominican University MBA

    Ohio Dominican University offers a fully online MBA degree with an emphasis in ethical leadership and strategic agility. The online format allows students to take as many or as little classes as need from any location at any time. ODU is passionate about helping its students succeed in leadership positions in a variety of different fields and agencies.

    • Location: Columbus, Ohio
    • Estimated Tuition: $21,600
    • Credit Hours: 36

     

    9. Asbury University

    Asbury University MBA

    Asbury University provides online education to many adults wanting to continue their education. The University is made up four schools; arts and sciences, education, communication, and the school of graduate professional studies. Asbury provides a fully online MBA program that is known for its affordability, academic prestige, and its flexibility. The online portal of AU encourages completion at your own pace. Through the MBA program, students will be able to perform managerial competency through skills such as critical thinking and business organization and communication.   

    • Location: Wilmore, Kentucky
    • Estimated Tuition: $21,996
    • Credit Hours: 36

     

    10. Hope International University

    Hope International University MBA

    As private Christian University servicing over 2,000, Hope International University offers many great programs including a fully online MBA degree. Five concentrations are available for students to choose from which include marketing management, nonprofit management, international development, general management, and business entrepreneurship. For those looking to finish quickly, HIU offers accelerated options.

    • Location: Fullerton, California
    • Estimated Tuition: $23,100
    • Credit Hours: 42

     

    11. Cedarville University

    Cedarville University was established in 1887 with the vision of providing Christian higher education “for the Word of God and the Testimony of Jesus Christ.” Its online MBA is designed for Christian professionals who desire to live out biblical principles in the workplace. Three tracks are available: general MBA, operations management, and healthcare administration. It’s a 36-credit program and can be completed in 24 months. The required classes are given in seven-week terms, allowing flexibility for working professionals. Courses are designed for the online environment but include hands-on case studies, projects chosen by the student, simulation games, and personal development. Cedarville has a 72 percent graduation rate and a student-to-faculty ratio of 5 to 1.

    • Location: Cedarville, Ohio
    • Estimated Tuition: $21,456
    • Credit Hours: 36-39

     

    12. University of Tennessee – Martin

    University of Tennessee – Martin online MBA programs

    The online MBA program at the University of Tennessee – Martin is a great, attentive option. Expect a small class for this 20-month program. On average, the University of Tennessee has a  5 to 1 student to faculty ratio, making them quite the hands-on program. The university has an estimated acceptance rate of 92% and is ranked as a top university by various organizations. The UT – Martin MBA program is AACSB-accredited and all courses are taught by full-time faculty.

    • Location: Martin, Tennessee
    • Estimated Tuition: $21,736
    • Credit Hours: 38

     

    13. University of Massachusetts

    University of Massachusetts MBA

    The University of Massachusetts has one of the most prestigious online MBA programs, that has proven to be successful for many students. The Isenberg School of Management offers a dual degree track plan for those students who are interested in earning multiple degrees at the same time. The program also offers specific concentrations to explore as well. Full time and part time formats are put in place for the needs of students to go at an accelerated or slower pace.

    • Location: Amherst, Massachusetts
    • Estimated Tuition: $35,100
    • Credit Hours: 39

     

    14. James Madison University

    James Madison University MBA

    James Madison University offers one of the top online MBA programs in cyber security. The education provided by JMU allows students to gain positions as business leaders. Cybersecurity is a top concern for the government and other organizations, thus providing many job opportunities within the field. James Madison is also known for its excellent student engagement and high-quality academics throughout all programs.

    • Location: Harrisonburg, Virginia
    • Estimated Tuition: $37,800
    • Credit Hours: 42

     

    15. Lehigh University

    Lehigh University MBA

    With a history of success, Lehigh University’s MBA program offers business education that is global, environmentally, and economically conscious. Business is constantly changing, and MBA program through Lehigh provides experiences that value constant change of the business world. Lehigh University produces dynamic leaders who think critically and understand business concepts with an ethical and social mindset.

    • Location: Bethlehem, Pennsylvania
    • Estimated Tuition: $38,700
    • Credit Hours: 36

     

    16. University of Texas – Dallas

    JSOM Addition Aerials November 2014

    The University of Texas , located in the bustling city of Dallas, offers only two specializations: Global Leadership and Project Management. There is an option for Healthcare Management track, but only for qualifying students. After graduating from the University of Texas MBA program, students can expect an average starting salary above $80,000.

    • Location: Richardson, Texas
    • Estimated Tuition: $49,531
    • Credit Hours: 53

     

    17. Louisiana State University

    Louisiana State University MBA

    The LSU online MBA qualifies students for leadership positions, corporate world, business ventures and more. The program strengthens students awareness of the business world through courses including finance, and information systems. The MBA can be completed in as little as 18 months.

    • Location: Baton Rouge, Louisiana
    • Estimated Tuition: $46,620
    • Credit Hours: 42

     

    18. Oral Roberts University

    Oral Roberts University online MBA programs

    Oral Roberts University was founded over 50 years ago to educate the whole person—the mind, body, and spirit. Though it’s had an MBA program for a long time, it wasn’t offered online. However, recently ORU added an LMBA, or a Leadership Master of Business Management degree that integrates two critical components of business – technical knowledge and effective leadership techniques. It is designed to be completed in six semesters, treating each summer as valuable time for completing classes.

    • Location: Tulsa, Oklahoma
    • Estimated Tuition for LMBA: $13,667
    • Credit Hours: 35.5

     

    19. North Carolina State University

    Tilt-shift version of campus aerial.

    NC State University offers a professional online MBA program that can be completed full time. Students have the luxury of having a flexible timetable allowing students up to six years to complete the program and as few as 21 months if desired. This accredited international program is ranked #15 by US News and World Report for best online MBA program. NC State uses technology to its full benefit for online students, providing constant communication and feedback with students. The program is available to begin in either spring or fall semester depending on what best fits a student’s needs.

    • Location: Raleigh, North Carolina
    • Estimated Tuition: $53,685
    • Credit Hours: 40

     

    20. Arizona State University

    Arizona State University MBA

    The W.P Carey School of Business at Arizona State offers an MBA program that is known for developing leaders for today’s business world. Accounting, statistics, economics, marketing, and more are included as focus points throughout the program. ASU is one of the most prestigious online communities ranking number 5 for best online MBA program by US News World and Report. Approximately 88% of ASU graduates receive job offers within 90 days.

    • Location: Tempe, Arizona
    • Estimated Tuition: $59,584
    • Credit Hours: 49

     

    21. Oklahoma State University

    Oklahoma State University online MBA programs

    The online MBA program at Oklahoma State University is accredited by the AACSB and has an ideal educational format for motivated, full-time working professionals who have travel obligations, face relocation or otherwise don’t have time for a traditional classroom MBA. Students who want to apply need to have a four-year undergraduate degree from an accredited university or college, possess a competitive GMAT score and at least a 3.0 GPA. Students who are interested should know that work experience is preferred but not required. While there are no formal prerequisite courses to the program, a sound background in calculus and quantitative skills is beneficial.

    • Location: Stillwater, Oklahoma
    • Estimated Tuition: $19,922
    • Credit Hours: 42

     

    22. Northeastern University

    Northeastern University online MBA programs

    Northeastern University’s 10-year-old online MBA program offers the more specializations than any other on this list. Northeastern University is a highly recommended school for getting an MBA online, and specializations include Healthcare Management, High Technology Management, International Management, Supply Chain Management, Finance, Innovation Entrepreneurship, Marketing, and Sustainability. Their average starting income for graduates is above $73,000.

    • Location: Boston, Massachusetts
    • Estimated Tuition: $78,000
    • Credit Hours: 50

     

    23. Temple University

    Temple University MBA

    Temple University provides a competitive MBA program which includes collaborative curriculum, excellent student services, diverse learning community, and support for those who are aspiring to be business professionals. Within the Fox School of Business, there are plenty of events and opportunities for students to display and gain more knowledge of the business world.

    The MBA program consists of 48 credits and can be completed in as little as 20 months.

    • Location: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
    • Estimated Tuition: $59,760
    • Credit Hours: 48

     

    24. California Baptist University

    California Baptist University online mba programs

    The California Baptist University created its online platform as more and more students began juggling careers, family life, and education all at once. It challenges graduates to become individuals whose skills, integrity and sense of purpose glorify God and distinguish them in the workplace and in the world. CBU Online offers an accredited Fully Employed MBA with the option of specializing in either accounting or general management. This MBA program is designed for professionals working full and part-time jobs who are seeking to develop technical skills and leadership competencies. Students can complete their degree in as little as 16 months.

    • Location: Riverside, California
    • Estimated Tuition: $22,356
    • Credit Hours: 36

     

    25. Pepperdine University

    Pepperdine University online MBA programs

    Pepperdine University offers its MBA online through its prestigious Graziadio School of Business and Management, which is accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB). This accreditation honor is bestowed on less than 5 percent of business schools worldwide. Admission requirements include a completed bachelor’s degree with an acceptable GPA, a minimum of two years of work experience, appropriate transcripts, and a GMAT score (or an acceptable alternative ).

    Pepperdine University’s online MBA consists of 15 courses taken over six 14-week trimesters. Students can choose from four elective concentrations which include Finance, Marketing, Leadership and Managing Organizational Change, and General Management. Two weekend-long campus residency experiences are required, including an initial Personal and Leadership Development Workshop course. Students can complete the 52-unit program in just two years.

    • Location: Malibu, California
    • Estimated Tuition: $89,180
    • Credit Hours: 52

     

    26. Rutgers University

    Rutgers University online MBA programs

    Students who choose an online MBA through Rutgers have the flexibility of taking classes year-round, part-time, or full-time with three yearly starting points in the spring, summer or fall. Rutgers is accredited by the AACSB and according to Bloomberg Businessweek, Rutgers’ MBA offers a 169% Return on Investment, meaning students will be able to get way more out of their online MBA than they put in. Students can also partially customize their degree through Focused Learning Modules. They can choose from Business Analytics, Digital Marketing, Investments & Private Wealth Management or Strategic Leadership.

    • Location: New Brunswick, New Jersey
    • Estimated Tuition: $73,224
    • Credit Hours: 54

     

    27. University of Dayton

    University of Dayton MBA

    The University of Dayton , a Catholic research university services an online community of students looking to further their education. Live online classes, multimedia coursework, and course immersions create a valuable learning experience. The program can be completed in as little as 18 months, giving students the opportunity to earn a degree quickly and move forward in a career or organization and put skills learned to practice.  

    • Location: Dayton, Ohio
    • Estimated Tuition: $60,000
    • Credit Hours: 48

     

    28. Drexel University

    drexel university online mba programs

    Drexel University ‘s online MBA program has been offered for over 10 years and is AACSB-accredited. Students can choose from concentrations in Business Analytics, Entrepreneurship and Innovation Management, Finance, General Business/Customized Concentration, and Marketing to strengthen or diversify their existing skills. There are even two graduate minors (in Finance and Marketing) that are available online as well.

    • Location: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
    • Estimated Tuition: $56,399
    • Credit Hours: 49

     

    29. University of Tennessee – Martin

    University of Tennessee – Martin online MBA programs

    The online MBA program at the University of Tennessee – Martin is a great, attentive option. Expect a small class for this 20-month program. On average, the University of Tennessee has a  5 to 1 student to faculty ratio, making them quite the hands-on program. They have a low acceptance rate of 42% making it fairly difficult to get in and the program does not offer any specific specializations.

    • Location: Martin, Tennessee
    • Estimated Tuition: $22,116
    • Credit Hours: 38

     

    30. University of Nebraska – Lincoln

    University of Nebraska – Lincoln online MBA programs

    This 14-year-old program at the University of Nebraska – Lincoln offers five different specializations: Business Analytics, International Business, Finance, Supply Chain Management, and Marketing. They have the highest average GMAT score for accepted students of 640. Like most MBA programs, they require 2 years working experience before applying. Graduates of this program can expect a $65,000+ starting salary.

    • Location: Lincoln, Nebraska
    • Estimated Tuition: $30,240
    • Credit Hours: 48

     

    31. Syracuse University

    Syracuse University online MBA programs

    Like the University of Nebraska – Lincoln, the Syracuse University online MBA courses began in 2001. They offer a nice variety of specializations from Accounting to Entrepreneurship. They also offer tracks in Finance, Supply Chain Management, and Marketing Management. On average, among accepted students, GMAT scores are around 600. They garner a great student-to-faculty ratio at around 11 to 1. To top it all off, graduates in their respective jobs have a handsome starting salary of about $90,000 a year.

    • Location: Syracuse, New York
    • Estimated Tuition: $81,000
    • Credit Hours: 54

     

    32. University of Colorado – Colorado Springs

    University of Colorado - Colorado Springs online MBA programs

    The University of Colorado – Colorado Springs online MBA is accredited by the AACSB and has been offered since 1996. With over 20 years of experience, this program has been uniquely designed for the working professional. It can be completed in as little as 18 months or as many as 5 years and is for those with or without a background in business. The MBA at UCCS also gives students the chance to choose from eight emphases including Finance, General Business, Health Care Administration, Innovation Management, International Business,  Management, Marketing, and Project Management.

    • Location: Colorado Spring, Colorado
    • Estimated Tuition: $29,628 or $39,504 (see bullet point below)
    • Credit Hours: 36 (with business background), 48 (without business background)

     

    33. Oklahoma Baptist University

    Oklahoma Baptist University online MBA programs

    Oklahoma Baptist University  is focused on teaching students the value of ethics and integrity as they receive instruction from professors that have practical, real-world experience. OBU’s MBA program can be completed in under two years and offers four concentrations, in addition to a general MBA. Students may complete tracks in International Business, Leadership, Project Management or Energy Management. At OBU, 100 percent of MBA graduates are employed at graduation and experience an overall 20 to 30 percent increase in salary after graduating.

    • Location: Shawnee, Oklahoma
    • Estimated Tuition: $18,150
    • Credit Hours: 33

     

    34. University of North Texas

    University of North Texas online MBA programs

    The University of North Texas has always been a high ranking school, even among online MBA programs. They started their program in 2007. The curriculum is 100% online, but you can opt for a blended option with a combination of online and traditional on-campus classes. They also offer specializations in Marketing, Finance, and Strategic Management. They have a lower GMAT average score than other colleges with the average at about 511, and an acceptance rate of approximately 55%. This University also provides a nice 4 to 1 student-faculty ratio, making it a much more hands-on experience for students.

    • Location: Denton, Texas
    • Estimated Tuition: $15,013 (Texas resident), $29,952 (non-resident)
    • Credit Hours: 36

     

    35. University of Virginia

    University of Virginia MBA

    The University of Virginia , Darden School of Business, promotes active learning for its online learners. With real-life business situations, University of Virginia challenges it students to think critically through difficult scenarios. A diverse group of students are enrolled both in person and online giving students the opportunity to learn from others with different backgrounds and experiences. Many graduate students have ventured into the business world and have inspired change and innovation by using their skills they developed while enrolled in the program.

    • Location: Charlottesville, Virginia
    • Estimated Tuition: $62,800
    • Credit Hours: 40

     

    36. Mount Vernon Nazarene University

    Mount Vernon Nazarene University online MBA programs

    Mount Vernon Nazarene University opened its doors in 1968 with an educational philosophy defined by an emphasis on loving God with all of one’s heart, mind, soul, and strength, as well as one’s neighbors as one’s self. MVNU’s online MBA was designed for ambitious adults to get a high-quality education while maintaining personal and professional responsibilities. All MBA students are required to complete nine core courses and are encouraged to finish their degree with a concentration in Finance, Human Resource Management, Ministry Leadership, or Organizational Management. For those who choose, there are 11- and 15-month accelerated online MBA programs as well.

    • Location: Mount Vernon, Ohio
    • Estimated Tuition: 17,928
    • Credit Hours: 36

     

    37. West Texas A&M University

    West Texas A&M University online MBA programs

    The online MBA program offered at West Texas A&M University (WTAMU) gives students the option to take classes exclusively online or take a combination of online and on-campus classes. The program is designed to be completed in two years, though some students may complete it in as little as 12-18 months or as many as three+ years, depending on their circumstances. Several MBA concentrations are available for students to choose from, including General Business, Computer Information Systems, Management, Marketing, and Healthcare Managment.

    • Location: Canyon, Texas
    • Estimated Program Tuition (In-state): $13,935-15,300
    • Estimated Program Tuition (Out-of-state): $14,400-$16,035
    • Credit Hours: 31-49 (depending on business background and emphasis chosen)

     

    38. Villanova University

    Villanova University MBA

    Villanova University provides a unique network for its business students. Its active alumni program excels in career growth and outreach as well as collaborates with graduate students to help others succeed. The MBA program is grounded in technology, ethics, problem-solving all through a flexible online platform. The online degree is the same curriculum taught by the same faculty which includes 21 courses over six semesters.

    • Location: Villanova, Pennsylvania
    • Estimated Tuition: $64,800
    • Credit Hours: 48

     

    39. University of Houston-Victoria

    University of Houston-Victoria online mba programs

    The University of Houston—Victoria offers two MBA degrees online, the Global MBA and the Strategic MBA. Both can be completed by students with recent business degrees in as little as 30 hours. The Global MBA differentiates itself from a traditional MBA by providing international perspectives and a global-savvy context. Students without a business background may need to complete up to 54 credits for the Global MBA. The Strategic MBA trains students for real-world business scenarios through applied learning simulations and case studies. Students without a business background may need to complete up to 48 credits for the Strategic MBA. Both programs have more than six concentrations students can choose from.

    • Location: Victoria, Texas
    • Estimated Tuition: $22,436-$40,385
    • Credit Hours: 30-54 (depending on business experience)

     

    40. Indiana University

    Indiana University MBA

    The MBA program offered by Indiana University focuses on a wide range of business concepts such as development, law and ethics, marketing, economics, and more. While there are no concentration focuses available, students are given the opportunity to choose many electives that interest them and that count towards their degree. Among the elective choices are courses which include travel to other countries to consult with small business owners, providing students with networking opportunities and a deeper understanding of global business issues.

    • Location: Bloomington, Indiana
    • Estimated Tuition: $68,000
    • Credit Hours: 51

     

    41. Central Michigan University

    Central Michigan University online MBA programs

    Located in Mt. Pleasant, Michigan, this University offers an MBA program with an emphasis in enterprise resource planning. It includes specializations in Human Resource Management, Marketing, Value-Driven Organization, and Logistics Management. They have a low acceptance rate of about 44%, with an average GMAT acceptance score of around 490. Most graduates from their online program have an average starting salary of around $53,200.

    • Location: Mount Pleasant, Michigan
    • Estimated Tuition: $24,000
    • Credit Hours: 40

     

    42. Auburn University

    Auburn University online MBA programs

    Auburn has one of the oldest online programs, with an MBA program established over 25 years ago. Unlike most online MBA programs out there, Auburn University’s mirrors the professional MBA program that they offer on campus. If you are seeking to have two degrees, you can couple your MBA degree with others like an MSBA-Finance degree, Industrial and Systems Engineering degree, or a Management Information Systems degree. On average, they accept those with a GMAT score at around 529. They have one of the highest acceptance rates at 72%.

    • Location: Auburn, Alabama
    • Estimated Tuition: $34,125
    • Credit Hours: 39

     

    43. Baylor University

    Baylor University is a private Christian university and a nationally ranked research institution that was founded in 1845. The Hankamer School of Business is accredited by AACSB, the highest standard of achievement for business school’s worldwide. Its MBA online degree provides the tools of principled leadership that will enable students to command admiration and deliver results wherever they go. Engaging conversations with professors and classmates will help students learn to communicate professionally, work in teams, and approach complex business situations with faith-based integrity. Baylor offers students an accelerated MBA as well that can be completed in 12-16 months.

    • Location: Waco, Texas
    • Estimated Tuition: $51,264-$60,624
    • Credit Hours: 48-60 (depending on business degree background)

     

    44. Texas A&M University – Kingsville

    Texas A&M University - Kingsville online MBA program

    Students who wish to be a part of Texas A&M University – Kingsville ‘s online MBA program need to have an acceptable GMAT or GRE score, a baccalaureate degree from an accredited college or university, and completion of TAMUK’s MBA program prerequisites (certain core courses). The program can be completed in as little as 12 months and students have the option to pick from five graduate certificates. The program is AACSB-accredited.

    • Location: Kingsville, Texas
    • Estimated Tuition+Fees (residents): $12,000
    • Estimated Tuition+Fees (non-residents): $24,000
    • Credit Hours: 30

     

    45. Babson College

    Babson College online MBA programs

    Through flexible curriculum options, Babson College offers diverse business related programs. Those who pursue completion of an MBA typically enroll as part-time and finish within 21 months. While focusing on business ventures, Babson also highly encourages entrepreneurship. By creating a strong global mindset by increasing social, cultural, and ethical awareness, students will be able to face business challenges confidently.

    • Location: Wellesley, Massachusetts
    • Estimated Tuition: $67,562
    • Credit Hours: 31

     

    46. The University of South Dakota

    The University of South Dakota MBA

    The University of South Dakota Beacom School of Business online is a high-quality degree that develops leaders for business and government. There are many specializations offered, each with its own requirements. Through the program, leadership opportunities are given to students to strengthen their skills and demonstrate innovation within a market that is always changing.

    • Location: Vermillion, South Dakota
    • Estimated Tuition: $68,952
    • Credit Hours: 51

     

    47. Campbellsville University

    Campbellsville University online MBA programs

    Campbellsville University was founded in 1906 and is considered one of the best private Christian institutions in the United States. Students who choose to attend this school can also let go of the stress that accompanies paying for a graduate degree: Campbellsville University has among the lowest student debt loads in the nation. Students committed to receiving an online MBA from CU have seven emphases to choose from including information technology, healthcare management, marketing, and more. Benefits of this program include leadership skills needed to move into managerial roles, a firm grasp of advanced business concepts used daily in the workplace, a knowledge base of trends that are changing the economy, and a focus on relevant information that can be immediately applied.

    • Location: Campbellsville, Kentucky
    • Estimated Tuition: $17,244
    • Credit Hours: 36

     

    48. Fort Hays State University

    The online MBA at Fort Hays State University offers many more concentrations to choose from than most MBA programs. It consists of 34 total credits hours with 9 credits set aside specifically for the students’ chosen concentration. The concentrations FHSU offers are:

    • Digital Marketing
    • Finance
    • Health Care Management
    • Health and Human Performance/Sports Management
    • Human Resource Management (HRM)
    • Information Assurance
    • International Business
    • Leadership Studies
    • Management Information Systems
    • Marketing
    • Tourism and Hospitality Management
    • General MBA (no concentration)
    • Accounting (on campus only)

    Twelve additional credit hours are required for students who do not have an undergraduate business degree. Courses are delivered via streaming videos and online discussion boards are used to help students stay in touch with fellow classmates as well as instructors. Some instructors use Skype, WebX, Blackboard, YouTube, and GoogleDocs to enhance the learning experience.

    • Location: Hays, Kansas
    • Estimated Tuition: $13,600 or $18,400
    • Credit Hours: 34 (if you have an undergrad in business) or 46 (for those without an undergrad business degree)

     

    49. Indiana Wesleyan University

    Indiana Wesleyan University online mba programs

    Indiana Wesleyan University is a private, non-profit Christian university that was founded in 1920. Its MBA courses are designed to build upon past experiences and education to help students become more insightful and tactical thinkers. Students can choose to get a general MBA or an MBA in Healthcare Administration, Personal Financial Planning, Project Management, or School Administration. The program can be completed in 18-26 months.o

    • Location: Marion, Indiana
    • Estimated Tuition: $23,604
    • Credit Hours: 42

     

    50. Hofstra University

    Hofstra University MBA

    Hofstra University understands that graduate students have responsibilities outside of school and that by providing an efficient and quality online program, students will be able to progress academically. Hofstra keeps its curriculum relevant to ensure graduates will have the right skills to excel in their chosen career. Its location in New York has provided unique business partnerships and opportunities in correspondence with the programs offered.  

    • Location: Long Island, New York
    • Estimated Tuition: $76,600
    • Credit Hours: 45

     

    51. Rochester Institute of Technology

    Rochester Institute of Technology online mba programs

    Rochester Institute of Technology offers a Master of Business Administration through the Saunders College of Business. Students will receive a strong foundation in business fundamentals and courses will have an emphasis on digital technology, including Design and Information Systems and Innovation in Products and Services. Students can choose from a number of concentrations such as Finance and Entrepreneurship. The school also offers joint concentrations with other RIT colleges. If you decide to go the online route, RIT offers an Executive MBA that can be taken on-campus or online and it’s primarily designed for mid-to-upper-level professionals who want to hone their leadership and business skills.

    • Location: Rochester, New York
    • Estimated Tuition: $78,000
    • Credit Hours: 47

     

    52. George Washington University

    George Washington University MBA

    Located in the hub of Washington DC, George Washington University has fostered institutional and professional relationships with private and public sectors, which gives students the opportunity to connect and network for their future. The MBA provided by GW is comprised of videos, podcasts, animations, and other interactive learning styles to keep the information engaging. In addition to the program, 6 concentrations within the degree are available but not required. Instructors are easily accessible to online students who can chat via video or email to answer questions or get additional help.

    • Location: Washington DC
    • Estimated Tuition: $97,957
    • Credit Hours: 55.5

     

    53. Concordia University

    Concordia University online mba programs

    The online MBA at Concordia University is one of the most flexible programs on this list, allowing students to start anytime during the year and take courses at their own pace. While an MBA is traditionally meant for business students, Concordia offers 13 MBA concentrations to accommodate students and professionals with experience in healthcare, public administration, environmental, or engineering backgrounds, among many others. Their website also mentions the opportunity to build and customize your educational experience to make it your own.

    • Location: Mequon, Wisconsin
    • Estimated Tuition: $27,261
    • Credit Hours: 39

     

    54. Oklahoma Wesleyan University

    Oklahoma Wesleyan University online MBA programs

    Oklahoma Wesleyan University is a military-friendly school and is associated with the Wesleyan church. Its MBA programs are designed for the experienced working professional who will possess the appropriate knowledge, practical skills, and professional abilities necessary to fill executive managerial and administrative positions upon completion of the degree. Students who participate in OKWU’s quality MBA program may choose an emphasis in Human Resources Management, Finance, Marketing, Organizational Leadership, or Nursing Management.

    • Location: Bartlesville, Oklahoma
    • Estimated Tuition: $18,540
    • Credit Hours: 36

     

    55. Quinnipiac University

    Quinnipiac University Connecticut online MBA programs

    This University is fairly new to the online MBA game, they offer six different specializations; Computer Information Systems, Finance, Healthcare Management, International Business, Marketing, and Management. They have a fairly high acceptance rate of 76% and an average GMAT acceptance score of 540.

    • Location: Hamden, Conneticut
    • Estimated Tuition: $43,010
    • Credit Hours: 46

     

    56. Bethel College

    Bethel College online MBA programs

    Bethel College was born in the cultural, political, and technological cross-currents of the 1940s. It’s affiliated with the  Missionary Church  and is a Christian community of learners dedicated to building lives of commitment to leadership in the Church and the world. Its MBA can be completed in 24 months of part-time or online study, with one class being taught every 7 weeks. Students can start at any time of the year and may take a session or semester off if the need arises. Students may choose between a Management Science track or a Leadership track.

    • Location: Mishawaka, Indiana
    • Estimated Tuition: $16,020
    • Credit Hours: 36

     

    57. Northwest Nazarene University

    Northwest Nazarene University online mba programs

    Northwest Nazarene University  was founded in 1913 and is a Christian, liberal arts institution affiliated with The Church of the Nazarene. It’s been named among the Best Regional Universities in the West by U.S. News & World Report and their business school is accredited by the ACBSP. Their online MBA program allows students to choose from the following concentrations: Healthcare, Operations Management, Finance, Global Business, and Leadership. The school offers a variety of student support services including library resources, tutoring, writing assistance, and advising services. NNU’s online MBA program is designed with the working adult in mind and may be completed in as little as 16 months.

    • Location: Nampa, Idaho
    • Estimated Tuition: $18,480
    • Credit Hours: 33

     

    58. Emory University

    Emory University MBA

    Emory University has a series of course for its MBA program that helps students manage personal and professional responsibilities. While the program is intensive, it is also flexible to fit a working student’s needs. The online MBA helps students sharpen their skills without falling behind in their work, school, or social life. EU gives skills to students that companies and professionals are looking for, which can take students to the next level of their career.

    • Location: Atlanta Georgia
    • Estimated Tuition: $101,700
    • Credit Hours: 40

     

    59. Georgia College and State University

    Georgia College and State University online mba programs

    For students looking for flexibility and cheaper tuition, Georgia College and State University may be the right choice. Of all of the Universities on our list, Georgia College and State University has one of the smallest student-to-faculty ratios of 18 to 1. Students can expect much more attentiveness from their faculty. The average GMAT score is 544 among accepted students, with an acceptance rate of 62%.

    • Location: Milledgeville, Georgia
    • Estimated Tuition: $22,870
    • Credit Hours: 30

     

    60. Norwich University

    Norwich University online MBA programs

    Norwich University first started their online MBA program 15 years ago, and it has been highly ranked ever since. They have five different specializations students can pick from Finance, Organizational Leadership, Construction Management, Program Management, and Supply Chain Management.  They offer an accelerated 18-month program for qualifying applicants. Norwich University’s online MBA program is one of the hardest to get into, with an acceptance rate of 42%.

    • Location: Northfield, Vermont
    • Estimated Tuition: $30,912
    • Credit Hours: 36

     

    61. Park University

    Park University online mba programs

    The Park University MBA degree may be earned on-campus, online, or as a combination of either option. The online MBA program provides flexibility for students so they can study where and when they can without needing to sacrifice academic excellence. The MBA curriculum has 21 hours of core courses designed to provide a broad education covering the major areas of business and 12 credit hours of elective or concentration courses. MBA students have the option to choose from nine different concentrations, including Disaster and Emergency Management, Finance, Homeland Security, Human Resource Management, International Business, Management Information Systems, Management Accounting, Project Management, or Quality Management.

    • Location: Parkville, Missouri
    • Estimated Tuition: $18,117
    • Credit Hours: 33

     

    62. Clarkson University

    Clarkson University online MBA programs

    Clarkson University was founded in 1896 as a memorial to Thomas S. Clarkson, a successful entrepreneur and businessman. Clarkson University’s online MBA program embodies his philosophy and motto that states “A Workman That Needeth Not to be Ashamed.” Working professionals can earn their degree in a way that is best suited for them, whether it’s by taking MBA courses on campus, online, or by using a combination of the two. The curriculum comprises 16 core courses and 5 electives so students can tailor their degree to their particular strengths and interests.

    • Location: Potsdam, New York
    • Estimated Tuition: $68,000 ($1,138/credit hour)
    • Credit Hours: about 60

     

    63. Fayetteville State University

    Fayetteville State University online MBA programs

    Fayetteville State University was founded in 1867 as the Howard School for the education of African Americans, but today it serves over 6,300 students and ranks among the nation’s most diverse campus communities. FSU is a constituent institution of the University of North Carolina and is the second-oldest public institution of higher education in the state. FSU’s online MBA is fully accredited by the AACSB and has numerous national rankings for its quality and affordability. It allows students to choose from one of eight concentrations and several graduate certificates. 

    • Location: Fayetteville, North Carolina
    • Estimated Tuition: $7,813 (in-state); $18,401 (out-of-state)
    • Credit Hours: 36

     

    64. University of New Hampshire

    University of New Hampshire online mba programs

    The University of New Hampshire was founded back in 1866 and has since claimed quite a few national rankings such as the highest national sustainability ranking and is one of the greenest colleges in the United States. It has also been recognized for its online MBA program which is laid out in 8-week terms and can be completed in two years. Students have the option to specialize in Finance, Information Systems & Business Analytics, Marketing, Global Business, Growth & Innovation, or Hospitality Management. UNH has a student-to-faculty ratio of 18 to 1.

    • Location: Durham, New Hampshire
    • Estimated Tuition: $38,400
    • Credit Hours: 48

     

    65. Northwest Missouri State University

    Northwest Missouri State University online mba programs

    Northwest Missouri State University offers students an affordable option for pursuing an MBA online. They have three different concentration students can choose from including General Management, Human Resource Management, and MArketing. The program will help students progress to higher management positions through the development of career-boosting foundational skills in business ethics, finance, quantitative analysis, policy formulation, global economics and more. All three emphases can be completed in 12-18 months.

    • Location: Maryville, Missouri
    • Estimated Tuition: $13,530
    • Credit Hours: 33

     

    66. Greenville University

    Greenville University online mba programs

    Greenville University was founded in 1892 and since the beginning, its mission has been focused on providing Christ-centered education to empower students to live lives of character and service. Its online MBA degree is solely focused on the technical skills needed in business administration and it has one focus area, Business Management. The program helps students obtain practical knowledge and essential skills in areas such as management, accounting, economics, finance, strategy, and marketing.

    • Location: Greenville, Illinois
    • Estimated Tuition: $17,485
    • Credit Hours: 40

     

    67. Kansas State University

    Kansas State University online mba programs

    Kansas State University has been offering quality education since 1863. Its Professional Master of Business Administration (PMBA) program offers those with pre-established business experience an opportunity to pursue an interactive, online MBA degree. It allows students to complete their coursework at their own pace and integrate examples of their professional experience in each class. The program starts with a mandatory two-day regional student orientation for new students and includes a required faculty-led international trip. K-State’s MBA program is AACSB-accredited.

    • Location: Manhattan, Kansas
    • Estimated Tuition: $25,000-$30,000 (textbooks are included)
    • Credit Hours: 30-36

     

    68. Texas A&M University-Texarkana

    Texas A&M University-Texarkana online mba programs

    A&M-Texarkana offers students the option to get a General MBA or an MBA with an Energy Leadership or Supply Chain concentration. The basic program consists of 9 required courses and 3 elective courses. For students who graduated with an undergraduate degree and had a 3.0 GPA or better are not required to have an acceptable GMAT score, as the school has agreed to waive it under those conditions. A&M-Texarkana has a student-to-teacher ratio of 18 to 1.

    • Location: Texarkana, Texas
    • Estimated Tuition: $17,343
    • Credit Hours: 36

     

    69. Frostburg State University

    Frostburg State University online mba programs

    Frostburg State University ‘s online MBA curriculum is designed for everyone, not just business majors, and it will provide a strong, well-rounded foundation in accounting, finance, marketing, human resources, and management. It follows a 7-week course model, offering 6 sessions a year for students to join, and full-time students can complete it in as little as 12 months. Frostburg State University has a 17 to 1 student-to-faculty ratio. Beginning Fall 2018, Frostburg State University is pleased to begin offering three curriculum concentrations in their online MBA program: General Management, Healthcare Management, and Business Analytics. Students may choose any one of them during Frostburg State University’s 6 sessions and the credit hours remain the same. Their MBA program is accredited by the AACSB.

    • Location: Frostburg, Maryland
    • Estimated Tuition: $15,444
    • Credit Hours: 36-42 (depending on your academic background)

     

    70. University of Alaska – Fairbanks

    University of Alaska - Fairbanks online MBA programs

    The Univesity of Alaska at Fairbanks has an affordable online MBA program that permits students to concentrate in General Management or in Capital Markets. For students without a business undergraduate, seven online  pre-MBA modules  replace full prerequisite courses. The degree is designed to be completed in less than two years and has a rolling admissions schedule. And the cherry on top? It’s accredited by the AACSB.

    • Location: Fairbanks, Alaska
    • Estimated Tuition: $12,648
    • Credit Hours: 30

     

    71. University of Texas—Rio Grande Valley

    University of Texas—Rio Grande Valley online mba programs

    The online MBA at the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley (UTRGV) is accredited by AACSB International and can be completed in as little as 12 months. Students must start with a business administration foundation which is achieved by holding a bachelor’s degree in a business field or by taking some or all of UTRGV’s foundation courses. All courses are offered in a 7-week format.

    • Location: Edinburg, Texas
    • Estimated Tuition: $17,000
    • Credit Hours: 36

     

    72. Louisiana State University – Shreveport

    Louisiana State University - Shreveport online MBA programs

    LSU Shreveport offers students an affordable online MBA program with nine areas of concentration including General Business, Data Analytics, Entrepreneurship and Family Enterprise, Finance, Hospitality and Casino Management, Human Resource Management, International Business, Marketing, and Project Management. The program is accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB), an achievement that is only reached by five percent of all business schools. Graduate students who want flexible learning schedules and an opportunity to hone their MBA degree in particular areas of study find LSUS to be a good fit. At LSUS the student-to-faculty ratio is 20:1.

    • Location: Shreveport, Louisiana
    • Estimated Tuition: $12,474
    • Credit Hours: 30

     

    73. Wayne State College

    Wayne State College online mba programs

    Wayne State College provides an affordable, yet quality option for those seeking to earn their MBA degree online. It’s a 30-credit-hour, non-thesis, 100% online program with no required visits to campus. WSC is accredited by the International Accreditation Council for Business Education and every class is taught by a faculty member who holds the highest degree or credentials in their field.

    • Location: Wayne, Nebraska
    • Estimated Tuition: $10,462
    • Credit Hours: 30

     

    74. MidAmerica Nazarene University

    MidAmerica Nazarene University ‘s online MBA program has classes that are focused on marketing, economics, organizational development, strategic management, corporate and personal ethics, and accounting. Most of the classes are taught in an 8-week format and most students can complete the degree in 24 months.

    • Location: Olathe, Kansas
    • Estimated Tuition: $20,520
    • Credit Hours: 36

     

    75. Angelo State University

    Angelo State University online MBA programs

    At Angelo State University all MBA courses are offered online or in a face-to-face/hybrid format. Unlike other programs, no elective courses are available to take in ASU’s MBA program. Online courses are offered in five 8-week terms throughout the year. In addition to the 30 credits of core classes, there are foundation requirements for students who have not received a bachelor’s degree in business.

    • Location: San Angelo, Texas
    • Estimated Tuition: $21,462
    • Credit Hours: 30

     

    We know that finding the best school to fit your unique needs can be a huge challenge. For that reason, we work hard to develop lists of the best schools based on the characteristics most important for you. Whether that be the cost of attendance, student success, resources available, flexibility of schedule, or any other number of important factors, we’ve got you covered. For more information about our ranking process and to find lists of schools based on specific characteristics, check out our  methodology page .

    If your MBA program isn’t included on this list but deserves consideration for an updated version, please reach out to us today!

    *Our “The Best MBA Programs in 2017” guide has been updated.


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