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How to Write a Good Reaction Paper: An Ultimate Guide

The reaction paper is a popular but often misunderstood type of essay. Many students think they can write a good reaction paper primarily with personal opinion, but a true reaction paper does more than simply report the student’s point of view. It also offers detailed justification for that opinion and contextualizes the student’s feelings in order to show connections between the student’s ideas and academic learning.

A reaction paper seeks to teach students to think critically and judge the facts in a balanced way. That is why most topics given for reaction paper writing are controversial and disputable. One can hardly have a simple answer to this or that question, and your ideas may differ greatly from the teacher’s or your peers’, but your reaction to the book, movie, video, documentary, or article should be logical and supported by evidence from the text.

When students are asked to prepare a reaction paper, they should bear in mind that such an assignment asks students to make a critical subjective analysis of the book or article under consideration. This involves doing more than simply saying what you liked, or, too often, did not like. Students often make a common mistake thinking that all they need is to emphasize the negative side of the text to sound serious and critical, which means that they omit places where they agree with the point of view of the author. A good reaction paper gives both sides, even if they are not equally balanced.

Many students find this process difficult and need professional reaction paper writing help, so we have decided to provide all students who need high-quality assistance with good reaction paper writing tips. In this article, we’ll go over some of the steps to write a reaction paper so you can begin to create a powerful paper of your own.

Note: You can get professional reaction paper writing help online from highly qualified writers!

Step One: Read Attentively and Take Notes

Obviously, the first step in writing a reaction paper is to have something to react to. That means that you need to read the article or book you have been assigned, or, if it is a movie, watch the film. Be sure you are paying close attention and have completely understood the piece that you are reacting to. You should be prepared for writing a reaction paper from the very moment you start reading the text. Try to catch every important idea and in order not to miss anything. Take notes scrupulously.

While reading, think about the author’s point of view and the author’s motives to think so. It will be useful to study the author’s biography before reading a book, for example, to be aware of the author’s background, education, occupation, philosophical views, and way of life. Similarly, the lives and philosophies of a film director and the actors in a movie can impact how we interpret a film. These facts will help you greatly to understand why the creators of the work you are reacting to support a certain idea or action.

If you are not sure whether the facts given in the text are valid, think about the author’s interests and qualification. There is a chance that the author is not an expert in the topic under consideration, so that means you have the right to think differently and support your point of view.

As you work through the issues that arise in the text, take notes attentively and write down your feelings about each part and how they change over time in order to analyze them further. Be sure to consider not just the facts and whether you agree with them but also the emotional impact of the work. How does it make you feel? What makes you feel that way?

Step Two: Limit the Quantity of the Words

Most instructors will give you a page count or word count for a reaction paper. Generally, these will be less than for a research paper. Remember that you do not need to write a long dissertation. A successful reaction paper is typically quite a short piece of writing. You are expected to focus on several points which you will support with information and evidence from the text. Try to make your reaction paper strictly-structured and divide your thoughts into paragraphs: Start with an introduction paragraph and thesis statement and then add one paragraph for one idea or example and analyze it briefly. This will let you move through as many points as possible within the brief page count of a typical reaction paper without any wasted words.

Step Three: Write a Summary of the Text

Now it is time to start writing a reaction paper. First of all, present a brief summary of the text under analysis and mention its title, the author, the year of publication. Describe the main idea of the text, the main problems, and questions the work raises. Analyzing the content starts with the author’s point of view and the author’s attitude to the facts presented in the book or article. Remember, however, that you have limited space in a reaction paper, so you should restrict your summary to only between one and three sentences to ensure you have enough space to complete the analysis.

Step Four: Analyze the Key Points

Now, write the body of the reaction paper. Here you should demonstrate that you have understood the ideas of the author and the general problem of the text. Choose several essential points for analysis. You are free to agree or disagree with the author, but you must rely on the evidence from the text, from the notes you have taken. In order to be logical, devote one paragraph for each point of discussion. Since this is a reaction paper, you shouldn’t be afraid to explain your own feelings and reactions and what prompted them.

Step Five: Write a Good Conclusion

In writing the conclusion, express your attitude towards the text and its parts. Summarize how your point of view differs from the author’s and what ideas you share with him. Once again, remember that in a short paper, the conclusion shouldn’t take up more than a couple of sentences. The summary should be short, and instead you should focus on having a dynamic and compelling final thought to leave your audience with.

After you have completed the reaction paper, reread it several times to make sure the paragraphs are logically placed and whether your work reads correctly. Proofread the paper several times to avoid mistakes, and finally, check if you have chosen the proper citation style such as APA.