What is evaluative analysis? This the next step for my Year 11s. We have explored how a concluding sentence, usually prefaced by a consequence connective, indicates evaluative commentary. But these are principles of evaluative commentary.

1) Thesis, antithesis, synthesis.
An idea is proposed, such as Juliet is impressed when Romeo is deemed to “kiss by the book.”

An idea that opposes (or, more likely, offers a different viewpoint) on the previous idea is given, such as Juliet could be suggesting that Romeo kisses with a technique practiced from study or self-consciousness.

These two contrasting ideas are synthesised into a final idea that takes elements of both, and produces an inherently new point. However, the idea might rely on understanding of the two previous points for contextual appreciation. For example, Juliet is highly unlikely to have any carnal experience (especially compared to Romeo.) Therefore, it is probably Juliet who is self-conscious of how Romeo is fulfilling her preconceived expectations of what a kiss should feel like. Her physical expectations of a kiss might contrast her social expectations of it being not for passion and love (which eventually lead to the fulfillment of her death) but rather for the legal seal of her status as male property.

2) “This shows a variety of emotion.”

The weakest, vaguest form of evaluation is to suggest that an idea can be interpreted in many different ways, or that more than one emotion can be experienced at once. While this is an essential revelation that many human beings fail to experience (or, perhaps, acknowledge) it acts as evaluation only when specific ideas fail a student.

3) “The composition of the picture shows not only the item/object/thing but also the ways it functions.”

This is slightly more sophisticated than point 2 above. However, it really needs to be applied to the purpose and audience of the text which is being analysed, especially for effective evaluation.