Paper 1 Requirements

Paper 1: Analysis


Your first paper should be a 4-6 page paper, formatted to MLA guidelines, that is an analysis of a text or idea that has come up so far. You should include at least one source.

Before you jump head first into this paper, please review what an analysis paper is. The definition for Analysis is: a  detailed examination of the elements or structure of something, typically as a basis for discussion or interpretation.  I suggest reading  “Critical Thinking in College Writing: From the Personal to the Academic‘ by Gita DasBender in  Writing Spaces, Vol 2,  as well as rereading “Teaching Literary Analysis‘ by  Rusul Alrubail for further help on what quality analysis looks like.

Once you have a solid grasp on analysis, you have a few options for what kind of analysis you’d like to do.

Option 1: Personal Analysis

How do you make choices about food?   What do these choices say about you? Take one idea, behavior or issue surrounding food (that you, yourself partake in) and use your analytical skills to pick apart that idea.

Some questions to ask yourself: What are the social/political/historical/ethical pros or cons of this idea? Draw on and incorporate the ideas of any/all of the authors we have read/watched to support your argument.

Option 2: Analysis of one food

Follow one food from its humble beginnings all the way to your dinner plate (no, you may not choose corn).   Then choose one social/political/historical/ethical issue and use this food item to analyze a larger issue of this food.   Draw on and incorporate the ideas of any/all of the authors we have read/watched to support your argument.

Option 3: Free choice

Choose your own adventure. If you have a brilliant idea, shoot me an email about it, and if you get the green light, you can take on another analytical topic of your choosing.

Check out more thoughts on where to begin  Here


An A+ paper will display the following qualities:

  • 3-5 properly formatted pages, plus a Works Cited page
  • Nearly perfect grammar and spelling
  • Analysis that provides astute observations of culture and promotes your individual critical thinking on the topic (analytical is the key – this should not read like a journal entry and use of first person should be minimal) and includes examples of your ideas
  • A clear thesis statement that is placed at the end of the first paragraph with organized paragraphs that support that thesis
  • 1 Source that is authoritative (NOT Wikipedia)
  • See Rubric for details


*Once you’ve turned your paper in, I will grade your draft, and advise you on changes that need to be made. Should you choose to revise, your instructor will replace your first grade with the revised grade.  The revision is due two weeks after the first draft. See course calendar for dates.