How to Write Effective Essay Prompts

How to Write Effective Essay Prompts
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  • 0:01 What Is a Writing Prompt?
  • 0:49 How to Write a Writing Prompt
  • 3:04 Example Writing Prompt
  • 4:27 Lesson Summary
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Lesson Transcript
Instructor: Katie Surber

Katie has a Master's degree in English and has taught college level classes for ten years.

To help your students develop stronger essays, you should develop effective essay prompts. In this lesson, we will discuss the steps to take to create an essay prompt that will inspire critical analysis and reasoning.

What is a Writing Prompt?

You are standing in front of your class, the students watch you, waiting to hear what the next essay will be. They are eager and ready to write. You, however, struggle as you try to explain the next essay pattern to them. You feel like you are asking the right questions, giving the right definitions, but what's missing? Why is the assignment not clicking? As a writing instructor, it is important that you have clear essay prompts for your students. A writing prompt is a statement that will focus the essay topic and then ask questions. A good writing prompt will help the students understand the type of essay assigned and what topic they are to focus on in their writing. In this lesson, we will discuss how to write effective essay prompts by identifying the type of essay required through key words and questions.

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