AP Language Confirmation Debriefing

As I’m grading the confirmations, these are the trouble spots that I’m seeing:

1. Topic Sentences/Claims: The claims that you are defending should be the topic sentences of your paragraphs. I am seeing quite a few problems with this. Some people have topic sentences/claims that are too vague. This tends to cause a problem with paragraph unity–not all of the proof you have in the paragraph directly supports that claim. Several people have paragraphs that have no discernible difference between the topics. Instead, it seems that the proof is just given randomly rather than in support of a specific claim, and one paragraph seems too much like another or others.

So, be sure that  you have clear and specific claims in each paragraph of your concession/refutation. This is even more important for you to check in this section since I already noticed problems with topic sentences when I checked your outlines. Remember at that time, many (many!) people did not have the refutation part of the claim in their topic sentences–only the concession Remember that the topic sentences of your concession/refutation will sound something like this: “Even though ___ believes ____, this is not so because ___.” If the “this is not so” part isn’t in a topic sentence, I would expect to see the NEXT paragraph (this is if  you are dividing your up your concession and refutation into separate paragraphs).

2. Transitions: I’m seeing a lack of these. Mostly this is a problem between paragraphs. But it is also a problem within paragraphs–especially to indicate you will introduce another piece of proof or to lead into a quote. Don’t forget to use these–and use ones that make sense–or it will likely be difficult for me to follow your argument. Also, don’t forget that quotes usually need context for the reader to understand them. Be sure to provide this as part of your transitions, too!

I will NOT be checking my email/grading on Sunday, so, if  you want your grade on the confirmation back before Monday, you MUST email Saturday–before about 7 P.M.


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