The main differences between descriptive and critical writing

Oxford Academy of English
The main differences between descriptive and critical writing

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The main differences between descriptive and critical writing

Descriptive Writing

Critical Writing

  • states what happened
  • outlines the order in which things happened
  • instructs how to do something
  • list the main elements of a theory
  • outlines how something works
  • list details
  • reports findings
  • evaluates strenghts and weaknesses
  • weighs one piece of information against another
  • draws reasoned judgements
  • clarifies why the theory is relevant / how it applies
  • indicates why something will work (best)
  • weighs up the importance of component parts
  • evaluates information and draws conclusions
  • interprets findings

Source: Cottrell, S. (2019) The Study Skills Handbook. 5th ed. Macmillan International Higher Education.

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