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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars There's none better. Suited especially to honors classes.
*Update, 11/11/2013. I no longer use this book in my classes, as I've found it a bit too advanced for my freshman English classes at a community college. Still, I love the book, and I and my students learned much about writing from it. If I eventually teach honors English, I'd use this book again. Below is my original review.

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Published on June 7, 2012 by Marc L. Kaufman

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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars required text, boring read
only got it because its a required text but i hear alot of professors saying its really helpful. i only did the required readings and fell asleep through most of them. still got an A though.
Published 6 months ago by M. Meier


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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars There's none better. Suited especially to honors classes., June 7, 2012
This review is from: Writing Analytically (Paperback)
*Update, 11/11/2013. I no longer use this book in my classes, as I've found it a bit too advanced for my freshman English classes at a community college. Still, I love the book, and I and my students learned much about writing from it. If I eventually teach honors English, I'd use this book again. Below is my original review.

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I'm going into my fifth year of teaching English at the college level. After being hired for a tenure-track position in a new college, I was given the opportunity to choose my own textbooks. Over the course of the past year, I skimmed through about 20 textbooks, classic and lesser-known, and am very, very excited to have chosen "Writing Analytically." I haven't used it yet in my classes (I begin using it in the Fall), but I'll explain why this book clearly stood out compared to the others I've looked at.

Beyond providing the standard "how to write," step-by-step perspective which I saw as the general pattern of most texts, this book goes much further, clearly illustrating and promoting the significance and impact of quality, in-depth writing on everyday thought processes. It comes more from the angle that "if more people think things through in these ways, we'll be able to solve many more problems as a society." This is amplified by the fact that professors and experts from multiple academic departments and career paths are quoted in the book, showing how thinking and writing in-depth will help students in all classes across the curriculum, as well as after college.

Another key aspect of the book is a key point it advances, which is that students need to be comfortable with uncertainty. In other words, they should not expect to understand all of the details of a complex text the first time they read. It provides ways to slow down, chart the progression of a text, and build in-depth pieces of writing based on those complexities. There's no "cookie cutter" work in this book.

What impressed me most what that the book has many powerful writing strategies that are entirely original, that I've seen in no other text, or ever learned on my own. One example: "Pointing," a technique to increase reading comprehension, and to make sure students don't reduce a detailed reading piece to a short "overall gist." When "pointing," students bring the reading to class annotated, and take turns reading key quotations out loud, either in small groups or as a class. This helps the common problem I see of students relying heavily on only one key quotation, over-simplifying a reading's complexities.

This book gives the sense of transcending merely the course, providing valuable perspective on the necessity of critical thought and analysis in one's life. It may sound silly, but as I was reading through it, the idea that kept popping up in my head was not only is this an excellent "how to" text for writing--it felt also like Jedi mind training. This is a gem.

(By the way, Cengage/Wadsworth's website has a free e-text version for instructors, I highly recommend taking a look.)
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars good overview of academic writing, June 15, 2012
This review is from: Writing Analytically (Paperback)
As a college instructor, I'm always on the lookout for books that will help my students with writing. This book is full of specific strategies and exercises that will help students improve their analytic writing in academic contexts. I particularly recommend it for students in the humanities and social sciences. It's also good reference for college instructors in disciplines other than English who are looking for ways to help their students with the writing process.

Some of the other reviews have complained that the book is condescending. That's not the reaction I had at all. If anything, the book's authors assume that students are capable of producing mature academic prose if given the right tools and guidance.
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5.0 out of 5 stars FUTURE JOURNALISTS LISTEN UP!, January 10, 2014
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This review is from: Writing Analytically (Paperback)
This book has allowed me to look at writing outside of the box. If you think you've got basic writing down, think again! I recommend this for any student looking to reshape his or her writing skills, in an unconventional way. The profound impact of this book is timeless, writing is taught as a visual thought process, which seems to be lacking in today's academic world. Learn to look at your sentences as shapes, rather than mere words. You are on your way to writing up a fury...Make it happen folks!
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4.0 out of 5 stars very useful, August 25, 2013
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This book Clearly explained the concepts. Helps in providing skills needed in all type of writing assignment. A good reference book.
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5.0 out of 5 stars great info, June 24, 2013
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This review is from: Writing Analytically (Paperback)
This books has some really great ideas for writing exercises and breaks down the process in manageable/thoughtful ways. definitely a good book to consider.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars required text, boring read, December 21, 2013
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only got it because its a required text but i hear alot of professors saying its really helpful. i only did the required readings and fell asleep through most of them. still got an A though.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Great Content, Liberal Biias!?, April 21, 2014
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This review is from: Writing Analytically (Paperback)
So this book is about as good as it can get with such a dry subject. I would rate it higher, EXCEPT somehow the author managed to sneak in every liberal bias that he has. Seriously... in a book on writing analytically, I do not expect political opinion. In many example within the book this guy shows his hand. It was annoying and senseless.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A useful tool, March 13, 2014
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This review is from: Writing Analytically (Paperback)
It's short and to the point, a decent writing guide. User friendly and reads as easy as any book made for a lay person.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Collage Class early, September 18, 2013
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This review is from: Writing Analytically (Paperback)
Purchased. For Grandaughter for school she likes the class but it is a challenge for her still in High School
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great, August 31, 2013
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This review is from: Writing Analytically (Paperback)
Book looks brand new; and its the right one. Definitely a good price compared to other places; would come back for more books from the same vendor.
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Writing Analytically
Writing Analytically by Jill Stephen (Paperback - March 22, 2011)
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