How to Self-Evaluate Your Essays

Students are used to their writing being evaluated by teachers. Teachers give grades and write comments in the margins, pointing out what is good about your essay, and what needs to be improved. It’s always good to hear feedback and see how others evaluate your work, but how to properly self-evaluate it? We at writers-house decided to help you properly evaluate your papers with our simple guide.

Although your opinion may be subjective, the truth is that you can evaluate even more things than your teacher. While teachers see only the final product, you can evaluate every step of the writing process and different drafts.

It’s important to understand the difference between self-evaluation and an apology or defense. Self-evaluation just allows you to become more aware of your writing process and common problems associated with it. The main goal of self-evaluation is to detect your weaknesses and strengths, understanding what skills you need to improve.

You may also want to share the results of self-evaluation with your instructors and tutors so that they can take them into account and so provide you with more valuable advice. We recommend that you self-evaluate your work after you finish an essay. Make your evaluation concise, just try to consider all the key components of writing.

What part of your paper took the most time to write?

Try to be specific when answering this question. Did you have problems with certain sentences or phrases? Did you have hard times expressing a certain idea or searching for the topic?

How does your final draft differ from the first one?

Did you approach the subject in a new way? Did you change the structure or add new details?

What is the best part of your paper?

The main thing is to explain what exactly pleases you in a certain paragraph or sentence.

What part needs to be improved?

The more specific you are when answering this question, the better. Consider an idea or sentence that you would like to change in details.

All students have to learn to evaluate writing because they will use this skill when conducting peer reviews. Self-evaluation is a great practice that will help you train this skill, while also improving your own writing. It may be difficult to detach yourself from your work, but it will get easier as soon as you conduct several self-evaluations. However, don’t forget that your self-evaluations cannot substitute feedback from your teachers and peers.

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