Evaluative Essay

Part I (2 pages)
Discussion: Analyzing Visual Texts

Required Resources
Read/review the following resources for this activity:

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Minimum of 1 scholarly source: the Archer essay in the textbook and/or the following library article cited in the lesson:
Link (library article): Teaching the Wise Use of Information: Evaluation Skills for Nursing Students
(Links to an external site.)
(Click on Full-Text Finder to access the article.)
Minimum of 3 research images for evaluation

Optional Resources
Review the following writing resources:

Link (multimedia presentation): Citing References in Text
(Links to an external site.)

Initial Post Instructions
This discussion has two parts.

Read the following in your textbook: “Adventures in Crime” by Amanda Archer (pp. 272-273). In complete sentences and with depth and detail, answer the following:
What is the single, overall evaluation Archer is making (her thesis, her purpose, the overall idea she wishes the reader to understand)? Is it clearly and effectively stated and situated? Why or why not?
What specific criteria does Archer use to evaluate her subject? Are these clearly presented? Explain.
Where do you see Archer using and/or addressing logos, pathos, and ethos? Be clear in noting one instance of each.
Next, begin work on your own evaluative essay by thinking and writing about your chosen image, your criteria for evaluation, your purpose, and your rhetorical appeals.
Post three possible powerful images, including a link below each to credit their source. Keep in mind that these are not random images we pull from online or from a magazine; these must be important in some way, something iconic, famous, and/or used for a purpose, such as selling a product in a unique way.
Note which image you feel you will likely evaluate in your essay and provide a sentence or two discussing what you hope to prove, what your purpose will be.
List 2-3 criteria by which you will evaluate your image.
Note one element of logos, one of ethos, and one of pathos present in your image.

How to Insert a Picture
To insert a picture into a post, do the following:

Make/save a copy of the picture.
Upload the copy to Files > All My Files.
Click on the Embed Image icon.
Choose the picture from Files > All My Files to include in the post.

Adventures in Crime

by Amanda Archer


he Incredibles, a Pixar Animated Studios production, is an action adventure movie filled with excitement. Although The Incredibles may be great fun for a family’s movie and popcorn Friday night, its PG rating is perhaps not strong enough. The film opens with the local superheroes revealing their previous thoughts and feelings about their work in candid interviews. As the story progresses the audience learns that these characters have been forced into a protection program that keeps what seemed like good deeds at bay. This introduces the characters to average working class lives where the Parr family has been relocated with middle-class employment; however, underneath their average suburban life they are superheroes, or “supers” as they call themselves. The Parr family members struggle with normal everyday challenges and conceal their above average abilities from the public’s eyes. The film portrays many positive values that a mature audience can glean. However, be warned that there are plenty of adult situations and undertones. Furthermore, many good deeds are accomplished with violence that will amuse adults but can negatively influence younger viewers.


The Incredibles can have educational value for the right age group; adults can interpret the characters’ comments and understand what messages lie underneath. The Parr family goes through events that help them cope with their skills and find constructive outlets that help them lead as normal a life as possible. Mr. and Mrs. Parr revive their struggling marriage, and family members discover new abilities, which they use to promote teamwork and strengthen their family ties. This movie can remind viewers that it is possible to teach children morals and values through events that the family encounters. Robert Parr, who is Mr. Incredible, tries to keep his gifted wife Helen, known as Elastigirl, and their children in a recreational vehicle to keep them safe while he attempts to destroy an enemy. He tells them that he cannot let them join him because he is afraid of losing them and would not know what to do without them. Helen tells him that she will not let him fight alone and she explains that together as a family they can accomplish more. Through events that arise, each character is able to learn about the special abilities he or she possesses and use these abilities as a cooperative team. This demonstrates the value of providing support for family members.



From the beginning of the movie, the adult content can be overwhelming for younger viewers. The humor and sexual innuendos are definitely created to amuse and entertain an older age group. For example, in one of the opening scenes, Mr. Incredible and Elastigirl are up on a rooftop trying to determine who will receive the credit for defeating a criminal when Elastigirl makes a remark to Mr. Incredible that he needs to be more “flexible.” While her comment may seem harmless, her tone of voice has a strong sexual connotation. Additionally, the language and actions of the adult characters are constantly geared toward adults and the ability to see through what is said and read into the stereotyping of each character they meet.


Furthermore, the numerous acts of violence are impossible to miss. The superheroes are seemingly regular people who have taken it upon themselves to intercede for the greater good where they see fit. This involves participating in a large number of violent situations. For example, as Mr. Incredible wraps up his first good deed in the movie, to assist an elderly woman retrieve her cat from a tree, he jumps into his car and is shocked to find a child in his passenger seat. The child exclaims that he is Mr. Incredible’s biggest fan and aspires to be his sidekick, Incrediboy. Mr. Parr, who dislikes the annoying boy, ejects the child from the seat, sending him into the air and over the top of the vehicle before crashing onto the ground. This scene reinforces the acceptable use of violence for amusement. Toward the end of the film, Elastigirl tries to sneak into a facility wherein she gets her body stuck in a electronic door and then uses her body as a weapon to knock out several guards and stuff them into a panel in the wall. The continual use of violence toward children as well as “bad guys” is entertaining but not beneficial for young, impressionable viewers. Young children sometimes mimic the superheroes they see on television, but these role models do not set a good example.


Overall, The Incredibles portrays several positive family values that audience members sometimes forget. However, the rating of this movie should be PG13 so that people are aware that young children should not view it without parental supervision. The humor is enjoyable for viewers who can understand the adult content and undertones throughout the script. As a result, this would be a great movie to view after young children have gone to bed for the night. So sit back, pop some popcorn, and enjoy the comic stereotyping of characters and the superheroes’ zany reactions to the situations that occur.

Part II (3 pages)
Evaluative Essay Planning

Optional Resources
Review the following writing resources:

Link (multimedia presentation): How to Avoid Plagiarism and Self-Plagiarism
(Links to an external site.)
Link (multimedia presentation): APA Basics
(Links to an external site.)
(Review this tutorial for formatting an APA paper and title page.)

This week, you will be working on the evaluative essay by deliberating over topics, discovering a purpose, generating criteria for evaluation, and considering persuasive appeals in your subject and in your writing. The purpose of this assignment is to set you up with your blueprint while you prepare for the final evaluative essay that you will submit in Week 8.

After reading the lesson and the textbook reading for this week, complete the following:

Look over your discussion work for Week 7 to determine which of your ideas interests you the most and which you believe would engage a reader the most.
Think about your criteria for evaluation and put careful thought into choosing two or three.
Address persuasion in two ways. Look at your image and assess how the creator of the image uses logos, ethos, and pathos to influence the viewer. Also, as you think about your criteria and how you will support those, consider how you will also use logos, ethos, and pathos to assert your overall evaluation of your image.

Once you do this, you will be ready to begin the formal planning stage.

Access the Evaluative Essay Planning Template (in Required Resources). Use this template and follow the format provided to create your prewriting and planning work this week. You will need to do the following:

Identify your image and explain why you chose this image and why it will be important to your reader.
Describe your overall purpose for writing about this image. What will you attempt to prove?
List your 2-3 criteria for evaluation, and for each of those criteria, provide two specific pieces of support.
Note at least one use in the image of logos, one of pathos, and one of ethos.
Note at least one way in which you, in your writing, will appeal to your reader by using logos, pathos, and ethos.

Writing Requirements (APA format)

Length: 3
pages (using template)
Single spaced
12-point Times New Roman font

Part III (4 pages)

Evaluative Essay

Optional Resources
Review the following writing resources:

Link (multimedia presentation): How to Avoid Plagiarism and Self-Plagiarism
(Links to an external site.)
Link (multimedia presentation): APA Basics
(Links to an external site.)
(Review this tutorial for formatting an APA paper and title page.)

Using the Evaluative Essay Planning Template that you completed for last week’s assignment, you are now ready to compose the full and final evaluative essay. Be sure to read this week’s lesson and Chapters 10 and 11 in your text for information about developing your full essay.

Successful assignments will do the following:

Focus on one powerful image.
Identify clear criteria (2-3), with a thesis statement that provides an overall evaluation and offers a larger purpose for discussion of the image.
Use many specific details to evaluate the image based on the chosen criteria.
Include a discussion of the image’s use of logos, ethos, and pathos toward meeting the chosen criteria.

Writing Requirements (APA format)

Length: 4 pages (not including title page)
1-inch margins
Double spaced
12-point Times New Roman font
Title page
Running head and page numbers
Do not use sources; no research is allowed.

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