Division or Classification Essay Assignment
Assignment ID Number AFFGEHU83939HD Type of Document Essay Writing Format APA/MLA/Harvard Academic Level Masters/University References/Sources 4 References
Division or Classification Essay Assignment
Essay 2—Division or Classification
In The Field Guide, read “Classifying and Dividing” (pp. 418-22).
You have already completed an expository essay with examples used as the primary means of support; this essay is slightly more complex but will build on skills you learned with the first essay.
Division is a form of analysis in which one element is separated into its component parts so it may be understood more easily. You must select one single principle (basis) for this division and stick to that single basis.
The government of the United States, for example, is a single element. The black circle below represents the government.
Since our government is so complex, it is more easily understood if we divide it into parts as shown in this diagram.
A division essay on the government of the United States would have three paragraphs, one on each branch.
Classification is a form of analysis in which many elements are sorted and organized into appropriate groups, types, kinds, or categories in order to make the information easier to grasp. You must select one principle (basis) for the grouping and stick to this single principle.
A marching band, for example, has many members. These people are represented by all the individual dots in the image below.
In order to help someone understand how all of these people work together to perform, the individuals can be grouped together as shown in this image.
The people inside the red circle lead the band while those in the green oval are members of the auxiliary units (majorettes, color guard, etc.). All the other dots are people who play instruments.
Either division OR classification is the main purpose of your essay, so be sure to structure the essay as a division or classification paper, NOT an illustration like your first essay.
The thesis statement for this essay will differ a bit from the thesis you wrote for the illustration essay; the main point of difference is the assertion. Whether you choose to classify or divide, this thesis has three key parts: subject, assertive principle, and map.
- The thesis must, of course, have a subject. This is the topic you are going to divide or classify, the large element that is being separated or the many elements that are being grouped.
- The thesis must also have an assertive principle of division or classification. This means the basis on which you will be dividing your element into smaller parts or categorizing many elements. What idea are you using to group (classification) or separate (division)?
The assertive principle is the unifying idea of the entire essay. For instance, if you are classifying students by major, each map section must be related to a particular major; don’t suddenly switch to classification by fraternity—only discuss the major. Another example is if you are classifying dogs by breed: you might have categories like spaniels, terriers, hounds, and retrievers. You would not have a category called “long-haired” because that’s a physical characteristic, not a breed.
I cannot stress enough the importance of the assertive principle. Without this element, you will have great difficulty in producing the map sections and you will end up with an essay that lacks unity.
- The essay map must contain a minimum of three groups, types, etc., just like the map you wrote for the first essay. If a subject can be divided or classified into four, five, or six areas, you must include all of them in the map and write a body paragraph for each one. If you don’t want to write five or six body paragraphs, you should narrow your subject or pick another subject rather than leave obvious sections out.
Here is a sample thesis for a division essay:
To fully appreciate its complexity, Americans must understand that the United States government is divided into the executive, legislative, and judicial branches according to the part each plays in creating laws.
The one large subject, the United States government, is divided into its parts. The assertive principle is according to the part each plays in creating laws. (This narrows the focus of the paper to only discussing the role each branch has in the creation of our laws.) The essay map names the three branches of the government. (Note: If the federal government had four or five branches, all would have to be included for this thesis to be correct.)
Second sample division thesis:
To provide efficient operations and organization, a fire department is broken down into command, support, suppression, and defense divisions while on a fire scene.
The assertion in this sample is not as blatantly stated. However, it is obvious the writer will explain the job each division performs while the department is at a fire scene.
The following sample thesis statements for classification essays use the same color-code as above (subject in blue, assertion in red, essay map in green).
To remain safe while driving, one must be aware of the drivers to be most on guard against; they fall into three distinct categories according to their dangerous driving habits: the maniacs, the ultra-conservatives, and the inattentive drivers.
Marching band members can be classified by their role in the performance as the leaders, the instrumentation, and the auxiliary.
Marvel heroes can be classified by their origin stories as those who were born a hero, made themselves a hero, and forced by others to become a hero.
Rarely, a subject might be used for either division or classification. Here is one sample; notice the difference in the wording of the subjects. This difference may seem unimportant, but it is significant and impacts the wording of the assertion.
Division thesis: A marching band can be divided into the leaders, the instrumentation, and the auxiliary based on their role in the performance.
Classification thesis: Marching band members can be classified by their role in the performance as the leaders, the instrumentation, and the auxiliary.
As you draft your thesis/map, keep these ideas in mind.
- Select one assertive principle and stick to it.
- Establish the best order for the map sections.—The best order will depend on your subject and the map sections you choose. You might organize the map sections from least to most, from the smallest to the largest group, or in some other way.
- Avoid undeveloped categories.—You are going to fully develop each body paragraph with description and at least one example. If you cannot think of an example to use for the category, it is likely too narrow.
- Avoid indistinct categories.—The idea in each map section must be distinct from every other section. In other words, map sections cannot overlap. For example, a paper explaining the types of cloth commonly used for bed sheets cannot include map sections for both cotton and flannel because flannel is a type of cotton.
Like the last essay, NO RESEARCH is allowed for this essay. Do not use sources other than your own mind for this essay. Also, like the last essay, NO personal subjects are allowed; this means you cannot write about types of bosses you have had or kinds of movies you like.
Your first assignment for this essay is to complete and submit prewriting, an audience analysis, and a thesis/map.
- Perform prewriting. For your chosen topic, first perform prewriting of your choice. Fill a page with possible ideas.
- Write an audience analysis. Complete an audience analysis for the people you are addressing in this essay. What are their interests, hobbies, etc.? Complete this step before writing the thesis.
- Develop a thesis statement with map.
You are not limited to the following topic suggestions, but subjects like these work well for this essay. Additional topic suggestions are provided in a separate file.
Division topics include such subjects as the government, a budget, and the military. Many other subjects are possible.
Classification topics include all types of subjects. These are not organized in any particular way.
children’s movies (or some other genre)
audiences at rock concerts
problems a specific group faces
video game players
weapons in a specific video game
places of worship
QUALITY OF RESPONSE NO RESPONSE POOR / UNSATISFACTORY SATISFACTORY GOOD EXCELLENT Content (worth a maximum of 50% of the total points) Zero points: Student failed to submit the final paper. 20 points out of 50: The essay illustrates poor understanding of the relevant material by failing to address or incorrectly addressing the relevant content; failing to identify or inaccurately explaining/defining key concepts/ideas; ignoring or incorrectly explaining key points/claims and the reasoning behind them; and/or incorrectly or inappropriately using terminology; and elements of the response are lacking. 30 points out of 50: The essay illustrates a rudimentary understanding of the relevant material by mentioning but not full explaining the relevant content; identifying some of the key concepts/ideas though failing to fully or accurately explain many of them; using terminology, though sometimes inaccurately or inappropriately; and/or incorporating some key claims/points but failing to explain the reasoning behind them or doing so inaccurately. Elements of the required response may also be lacking. 40 points out of 50: The essay illustrates solid understanding of the relevant material by correctly addressing most of the relevant content; identifying and explaining most of the key concepts/ideas; using correct terminology; explaining the reasoning behind most of the key points/claims; and/or where necessary or useful, substantiating some points with accurate examples. The answer is complete. 50 points: The essay illustrates exemplary understanding of the relevant material by thoroughly and correctly addressing the relevant content; identifying and explaining all of the key concepts/ideas; using correct terminology explaining the reasoning behind key points/claims and substantiating, as necessary/useful, points with several accurate and illuminating examples. No aspects of the required answer are missing. Use of Sources (worth a maximum of 20% of the total points). Zero points: Student failed to include citations and/or references. Or the student failed to submit a final paper. 5 out 20 points: Sources are seldom cited to support statements and/or format of citations are not recognizable as APA 6th Edition format. There are major errors in the formation of the references and citations. And/or there is a major reliance on highly questionable. The Student fails to provide an adequate synthesis of research collected for the paper. 10 out 20 points: References to scholarly sources are occasionally given; many statements seem unsubstantiated. Frequent errors in APA 6th Edition format, leaving the reader confused about the source of the information. There are significant errors of the formation in the references and citations. And/or there is a significant use of highly questionable sources. 15 out 20 points: Credible Scholarly sources are used effectively support claims and are, for the most part, clear and fairly represented. APA 6th Edition is used with only a few minor errors. There are minor errors in reference and/or citations. And/or there is some use of questionable sources. 20 points: Credible scholarly sources are used to give compelling evidence to support claims and are clearly and fairly represented. APA 6th Edition format is used accurately and consistently. The student uses above the maximum required references in the development of the assignment. Grammar (worth maximum of 20% of total points) Zero points: Student failed to submit the final paper. 5 points out of 20: The paper does not communicate ideas/points clearly due to inappropriate use of terminology and vague language; thoughts and sentences are disjointed or incomprehensible; organization lacking; and/or numerous grammatical, spelling/punctuation errors 10 points out 20: The paper is often unclear and difficult to follow due to some inappropriate terminology and/or vague language; ideas may be fragmented, wandering and/or repetitive; poor organization; and/or some grammatical, spelling, punctuation errors 15 points out of 20: The paper is mostly clear as a result of appropriate use of terminology and minimal vagueness; no tangents and no repetition; fairly good organization; almost perfect grammar, spelling, punctuation, and word usage. 20 points: The paper is clear, concise, and a pleasure to read as a result of appropriate and precise use of terminology; total coherence of thoughts and presentation and logical organization; and the essay is error free. Structure of the Paper (worth 10% of total points) Zero points: Student failed to submit the final paper. 3 points out of 10: Student needs to develop better formatting skills. The paper omits significant structural elements required for and APA 6th edition paper. Formatting of the paper has major flaws. The paper does not conform to APA 6th edition requirements whatsoever. 5 points out of 10: Appearance of final paper demonstrates the student’s limited ability to format the paper. There are significant errors in formatting and/or the total omission of major components of an APA 6th edition paper. They can include the omission of the cover page, abstract, and page numbers. Additionally the page has major formatting issues with spacing or paragraph formation. Font size might not conform to size requirements. The student also significantly writes too large or too short of and paper 7 points out of 10: Research paper presents an above-average use of formatting skills. The paper has slight errors within the paper. This can include small errors or omissions with the cover page, abstract, page number, and headers. There could be also slight formatting issues with the document spacing or the font Additionally the paper might slightly exceed or undershoot the specific number of required written pages for the assignment. 10 points: Student provides a high-caliber, formatted paper. This includes an APA 6th edition cover page, abstract, page number, headers and is double spaced in 12’ Times Roman Font. Additionally, the paper conforms to the specific number of required written pages and neither goes over or under the specified length of the paper.
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