In-Class Essay Exams

By the time you leave this workshop,
we want you to be able to…
Manage your time properly in a timed
Analyze the key terms in a writing
Prewrite/brainstorm for your topic
Choose a strong thesis for your essay
Find quotes to bring to your exam
In a regular essay you may have 10 days to
prepare (prewrite, draft, revise, and edit)
before turning in your final draft. This is 240
hours of preparation time.
However, for an class essay, you often have
between 1 to 2 hours to draft the essay.
Therefore, time management is essential.
Sit in a comfortable position and close your eyes
Begin by focusing on your breathing and
making it slow and even
Focus on your feet and how they feel. Let them
relax and become heavy.
Relax each part of your body the same way.
Work your way up the body as you relax your
legs, stomach, chest, arms, shoulders, and head.
This should take about 15 minutes, so make
time before the test
Make sure to get enough sleep the night before
the test
Eat a good breakfast on the morning of the test.
Try to get lots of protein to give you energy.
Avoid caffeine unless you’re used to drinking
it every day.
Remember to think positively during the test!
This is a
Get one.
Bring a watch with you when you take the exam or make sure a clock will be in the
exam room. That way, you will know how much time you have left to finish writing.
Be prepared! Create a schedule for yourself to
help manage your time properly.
Give yourself time to prewrite, write the essay,
and proofread.
Give yourself as much time for each activity as
you think you need.
Prewriting- 10 minutes
Writing- 40 minutes
Proofreading- 10 minutes
Prewriting- 15 minutes
Writing- 40 minutes
Proofreading- 5 Minutes
Prewriting- 5 minutes
Writing- 40 minutes
Proofreading- 15 minutes
Prewriting- 10 minutes
Writing- 45 minutes
Proofreading- 5 Minutes
Prewriting- 5 minutes
Writing- 45 minutes
Proofreading- 10 minutes
You should prewrite to organize your thoughts
before you begin writing.
There are many ways to prewrite. We will be
going over clustering, but feel free to look at
the Writing Center’s handout on The Writing
Process for more ways to prewrite.
To cluster, begin by writing the prompt in a
circle in the center of your page. Then, draw
out more concepts in circles and connect them
to the center circle. Continue drawing out new
ideas and connecting them to existing circles.
School switch
“Adam the
Ms. M
An early
experience with
A brief example
These are terms that you will often see in writing prompts.
Look at the explanations to figure out what you are
supposed to do.
Analyze- to separate something into parts and then discuss those
parts and their meanings.
Classify- to arrange into groups on the basis of shared
Compare and contrast- to show similarities and their differences.
Criticize- to judge and discuss the merits and faults of your
Define- to explain or identify the nature or essential qualities of
your subject.
Discuss- to consider or examine by argument, comment or debate,
or to explore solutions.
Evaluate- to appraise the worth of an idea, comment, etc. and
justify your conclusion.
Explain- to make clear or intelligible something that needs to be understood or
Illustrate- to use specific examples or analogies to clarify or explain something.
Interpret- to define information through an explanation based on personal opinion.
Justify- showing or proving that something is valid or correct.
Prove- to present evidence that cannot be refuted logically or with other evidence.
Relate- to show the connections between two or more things.
Review- to reexamine, summarize, or reprise something.
Summarize- to briefly repeat the major points of something.
Support- to argue in favor of something.
Compare and contrast the advantages and
disadvantages of online courses with those of
traditional classes.
Click again to
see these
Analyze a character in fiction, a historical figure, or a
creative work that has had an influence on you, and
explain that influence.
Evaluate a significant experience, achievement, risk you
have taken, or ethical dilemma you have faced and its
impact on you.
Voting is an important issue in our society, yet many
students do not take the time to vote. Discuss why
you believe voting is or is not important for students.
Include the reasons why you think there is a low
This prompt
voter turnout among college students. In addition, has four parts
what do you think are some important issues for
college students? Illustrate your ideas by using
examples from your own experiences/personal life. 4
Evaluate and interpret the story.
Support your point with quotes.
Try to find quotes that support the theme in the next slide
Summer was dead, but autumn had not yet been born when the
ibis came to the bleeding tree. It's strange that all this is so clear
to me, now that time has had its way. But sometimes (like right
now) I sit in the cool green parlor, and I remember Doodle.
Doodle was about the craziest brother a boy ever had. Doodle
was born when I was seven and was, from the start, a
disappointment. He seemed all head, with a tiny body that was
red and shriveled like an old man's. Everybody thought he was
going to die.
Daddy had the carpenter build a little coffin, and when he was
three months old, Mama and Daddy named him William
Armstrong. Such a name sounds good only on a tombstone.
When he crawled on the rug, he crawled backward, as if he were
in reverse and couldn't change gears. This made him look like a
doodlebug, so I began calling him 'Doodle.' Renaming my brother
was probably the kindest thing I ever did for him, because nobody
expects much from someone called Doodle.

similar documents