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RWR 1

RWR 1

Reno’s Writing Renditions!

TheThe AcademicAcademic EssayEssay

This package will introduce you to the fundamental features of a particular essay genre, in this case:

TheThe explanationexplanation essayessay

Inside you will find:

1. An Explain Essay Checksheet that lists the important features of this essay genre (style)

2. An essay that demonstrates the style

3. A question sheet to answer

4. A text analysis to help you find the features

5. An answer sheet.

Welcome!

copyright Reno Dal 2004 (2002) Issued Thursday, 15 January 2004 11:58 PM

RWR1: The Explanation Essay

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EXPLANATION ESSAY CHECKSHEET

Name

 

Comments

Class:

   

CONTENT CLARITY

 
 

Clarity – easy to understand and read

 
 

Cohesion – smooth flow with linked sentences

 
 

Staging Devices that announce paragraph relationships

 

STRUCTURAL ISSUES

 
 

Structure – ABC – the [A, [B, [C then ABC

 
 

Introduction

 
 

Background/General Theme

 
 

Definition of key terms

 
 

Scope/Outline with clear points (A, B, C)

 
 

Body Text

 
 

Staging devices announce paragraph relationships

 
 

Topic Sentences – clear

 
 

Logical Flow – order as per outline (A, B, C)

 
 

Conclusion

 
 

Staging Device Announces Conclusion

 
 

SUMMARY – order as per outline (A, B, C)

 
 

SORI – Statement of relative importance

 
 

Concluding Statement

 

STYLE ISSUES

 
 

Expression

 
 

Academic Language not Colloquial

 
 

No 1 st & 2 nd person pronouns (I, we, you, me, us, your)

 
 

Sentence meanings clear & accurate

 
 

Spelling accurate/not confusing

 
 

Noun Groups/Nominalisation

 
 

Grammar

 
 

Verb-Subject Agreement

 
 

Appropriateness - no confusion of meanings

 

DOCUMENT PRESENTATION

 
 

A4 Paper

 
 

Stapled on top, left-hand corner

 
 

Name, class & teacher on top right-hand corner

 
 

Margins left and right for teacher notes

 
 

Double spaced for corrections

 
 

Loose sheets - not in plastic folder or book

 
 

Clear writing or choice of font

 

LEGEND

   

Symbol

Meaning

 

X

Not there or badly done (see your teacher)

 

Well done

 

Line/Circle

Needs improvement (review the guidelines)

 

copyright Reno Dal 2004 (2002) Issued Thursday, 15 January 2004 11:58 PM

RWR1: The Explanation Essay

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Why do Overseas Students come to Australia?

The practice of travelling abroad to pursue tertiary study has developed into a

major industry in Australia catering to an annual presence of approximately

135,000 students in 2001. For the purpose of this essay, overseas students

will be defined as those students from Asia coming to Australia for the

purpose of undergraduate study. While this is not the only student group, it

does

comprise

the

vast

majority

of

the

student

body.

This

essay

will

investigate

three

key

areas:

exceptional

social

services,

educational

advantages and family reasons.

Australia’s exceptional social services are an important element in students

choosing this destination. The country boasts a wide range of Asian foods

including Cantonese, Shanghainese, Thai and MacDonalds. This means

that overseas students will never need to learn how to cook for themselves.

Furthermore, a wide range of video rental shops offer programs in all Asian

languages which means that overseas students will never need to watch

any television in English, which is a major inconvenience for many. Beyond

all this, there is the added convenience of Chinatown, Thaitown and Little

Saigon in Cabramatta which provide social environments so similar to

‘home’ that overseas students need never feel that they have left their home

countries. Even ‘on campus’ students can join associations of their fellow

compatriots, so that even at university they can remain in the comfort of their

own language and culture. Thus it can be readily understood that Australia

copyright Reno Dal 2004 (2002) Issued Thursday, 15 January 2004 11:58 PM

RWR1: The Explanation Essay

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offers a level of social services so complete that students may not even

notice that they have left their own countries.

Beyond mere social services, Australia also offers the highest quality of

educational advantages available anywhere in the world. It is well-known

that, unlike the Asian system, Australian education has no compulsory

homework and little need to study. Even English is unnecessary as most

classes are conducted in Cantonese when the teacher is not looking. It is

also widely understood that Australia has much lower standards than

England or the United States of America which means that obtaining a

degree is more like a holiday than a time of hard work. All these factors

combine to make Australia’s educational advantages incomparable across

the planet.

Lastly, family reasons, which play an important role in Asian cultures, must

be considered. Asian families are reputedly very close-knit, creating in

children a strong desire to escape intense filial pressures. Because Australia

is seen as a safe and easily accessible country, parents are more likely to

allow their children independence than if they went to places such as the

United States of America or England. This allows students to explore a

wilder life than they ever could with family supervision; they dye their hair, go

to wild parties and explore Australia’s flamboyant social diversity. The only

disadvantage is that parents can quickly fly to Australia but this is only a

minor disadvantage as hairdressing salons and clothing shops are open

seven days a week, thus allowing students to quickly return their hair to its

copyright Reno Dal 2004 (2002) Issued Thursday, 15 January 2004 11:58 PM

RWR1: The Explanation Essay

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original colour and dress as their parents expect. Thus, the effective escape

from family pressures is achieved without duress.

In conclusion, this essay has investigated the three main reasons why

overseas students choose to study in Australia, being exceptional social

services, major educational advantages and important family reasons. Of all

of these, family reasons are the most important since if it was impossible to

escape the pressures of family life, there would be little point in going

overseas at all. Thus it can be easily understood that a wide range of

elements contribute to the move to Australia, all of them compelling in their

own way. It is therefore highly probable that this trend will continue.

copyright Reno Dal 2004 (2002) Issued Thursday, 15 January 2004 11:58 PM

RWR1: The Explanation Essay

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QUESTIONS: ESSAY FEATURES

(A)

What are the key points of the scope?

(B)

How many paragraphs are there in the body text?

(C)

What are the “in text” references?

(D)

What are the key points of the summary?

(E)

Where is the definition?

(F)

How many new ideas are presented in the conclusion?

(G)

Look at the body text and identify the subjects of the

topic sentences. Note their relationship to the scope

(H)

What verb tense is used in the scope?

(I)

What verb tense is used in the summary?

(J)

How many times are the 1 st & 2 nd person pronouns

used? (i.e. I/we, me/us, you)

copyright Reno Dal 2004 (2002) Issued Thursday, 15 January 2004 11:58 PM

RWR1: The Explanation Essay

ANALYSIS OF TEXT

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Introduction

Opening Statement (Background Statement):

The practice of travelling abroad to pursue tertiary study has developed into a major industry in Australia catering to an annual presence of approximately 135,000 students in 2001 (SMH 2001:13).

Definition:

‘Overseas students’ refers to those students coming to Australia for the purpose of study.

OR:

For the purpose of this essay, overseas students will be defined as those students from Asia coming to Australia for the purpose of undergraduate study.

Scope:

This essay will investigate* three key areas: (A) exceptional social services, (B) educational advantages and (C) family reasons. *(explore/explain/present/consider/propose)

Body Text- Topic Sentences

First Paragraph:

(A) Australia’s exceptional social services are an important element in

students choosing this destination

Second Paragraph:

(B) Beyond mere social services, Australia also offers the highest quality of

educational advantages available anywhere in the world.

Third Paragraph:

(C) Lastly, family reasons, which play an important role in Asian cultures, must

be considered.

copyright Reno Dal 2004 (2002) Issued Thursday, 15 January 2004 11:58 PM

RWR1: The Explanation Essay

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Conclusion:

Summary In conclusion, this essay has investigated the three main reasons why overseas students choose to study in Australia, being exceptional social services, major educational advantages and important family reasons.

Statement of Relative Importance

reasons are the most important since if it was

impossible to escape the pressures of family life, there would be little point in going overseas at all.

OR:

Of all of these, family reasons are the most important because, if it was impossible to escape the pressures of family life, there would be little point in going overseas at all.

Of all of these, family

Concluding Statement

Thus it can be easily understood that a wide range of elements contribute to the move to Australia, all of them compelling in their own way. It is therefore highly probable that this trend will continue.

copyright Reno Dal 2004 (2002) Issued Thursday, 15 January 2004 11:58 PM

RWR1: The Explanation Essay

ESSAY FEATURES

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The Answers

(A) What are the key points of the scope?

ANSWER:

(A)

exceptional social services

(B)

educational advantages and

(C)

family reasons.

(B)

How many paragraphs in the body text?

3=A, B, C

(C)

What are the “in text” references?

(SMH 2001:13) (SMH 2001:13) (Dal 1996:72)

(D)

What are the key points of the summary?

3=A, B, C

(E)

Where is the definition?

Introduction, 2 nd sentence.

(F)

How many new ideas are presented in the conclusion?

None

(G)

Look at the body text and identify the subjects of the topic sentences. Note their relationship to the scope.

ANSWER:

See underlined noun groups in text analysis on page 7. Also note the use of lexical chains- a sequence of noun groups with similar meanings.

(H)

What verb tense is used in the scope? Future simple. N.B. This could also be the present simple tense.

(I)

What verb tense is used in the summary?

Present perfect

(J)

How many times are the 1 st & 2 nd person pronouns used? (i.e. I/we, me/us, you).

ANSWER:

 

Not once

KEY ISSUES:

(1)

The use of verb tenses to signal scope and summary.

(2)

Use of cohesive devices.

(3)

Explanation essay structure.

copyright Reno Dal 2004 (2002) Issued Thursday, 15 January 2004 11:58 PM