Wait. Don’t tell me. You have to write an evaluation essay, don’t you? I bet you’re stumped for ideas, right?
No, I’m not psychic; it was just an educated guess. I thought you might be looking for topic ideas since you found your way to a blog post about evaluation essay topics.
I’ll make another educated guess and say your professor wants you to write about a unique subject, right? Are you thinking this is almost an impossible task?
It’s not. Before you panic and decide there’s nothing original left to write, take a deep breath and finish reading this post, as I’ve included 20 evaluation essay topics to spark your next paper.
Choosing an Evaluation Essay Topic
Writing an evaluation essay is a bit like writing a review: you need to describe both positive and negative aspects of your subject. An evaluation essay, however, is more specific than a review.
An evaluation essay requires you to develop and discuss specific criteria in order to properly evaluate the subject. (For more help with evaluation essays, read What Is an Evaluation Essay and Why Should You Care? and How to Use Critical Thinking in Your Essay and Write Smarter.)
When it comes to writing evaluation essays, some ideas are pretty standard, such as food, movies, places, and events. That’s not to say that you can’t write about these topics. You simply need to find a unique perspective.
How do you know which subject to choose?
Here are a few basic guidelines:
Pick a topic you know something about
Let’s say you decide to evaluate a restaurant. Don’t choose a trendy new French restaurant if you have no idea what French cuisine should taste like. Stick to something you know, whether it’s pizza and burgers, Indian food, or Mexican food.
Pick a topic you can revisit
Don’t evaluate a concert you went to a few years ago. You won’t remember all the details. Instead, pick a much more recent concert or pick a show you can see several times in order to evaluate it.
Pick a topic you care about
If you just watched a movie, and your initial reaction was “Eh, it’s ok” this is not the movie to choose as the subject of your evaluation essay. If you don’t care about the movie, you don’t care enough to write about it.
If you walked out of the theater saying “That was the worst movie I’ve ever seen,” you should seriously consider using the movie as the subject of your evaluation. Because you had such a strong reaction to the movie, you’ll have something to say in your evaluation.
Remember, an evaluation doesn’t have to always be positive. If you have strong feelings about a topic (either positive or negative), it’s likely a good candidate for an evaluation essay.
With these guidelines in mind, read these 20 evaluation essay topics to spark your next paper and pick a topic that sparks your interest!
20 Evaluation Essay Topics to Spark Your Next Paper
Don’t sit around waiting for a bolt of lightning to spark your interest. Use these topics to help you find the perfect idea.
5 Evaluation Essay Topics about Food
- A dining option on campus: Think about the variety of foods offered, the cost, and of course, the taste. You might consider how one dining establishment compares to a similar restaurant on campus.
- A local hangout: Perhaps the food is only part of the appeal to your favorite local hangout. You might also evaluate the atmosphere and who spends time there.
- Chinese takeout: Decide what it is you like or don’t like about the service, such as the speed of the delivery and whether or not the employees are friendly. Of course, taste, variety of menu items, and cost will likely be a part of your evaluation, too.
- A frozen meal: Value, appearance, and taste are certainly points to consider when evaluating any frozen food. Whether or not the meal is actually edible might be the biggest concern!
- A local deli: Consider the variety of lunch options offered, the quality of the food, and the size of the portions. Sometimes a cheap but mediocre sandwich that’s big enough to feed you and two friends (or you and one really hungry friend) beats a more expensive and better tasting meal.
5 Evaluation Essay Topics about Television and Movies
- A historical film: It’s common to review a film based on acting, directing, and storyline, but try a more original approach and evaluate a film on its historical accuracy and how it affects the film’s quality and viewers’ appreciation of the film. Does it matter if a battle scene is not historically accurate if it’s a riveting scene, or does it completely ruin the film?
- A recent movie remake: Of course you’ll have to watch both versions of the movie, but use this opportunity to evaluate whether or not the remake does justice to the original. Consider if the remake makes sweeping changes to the plot or updates the content in some way. Evaluate how this affects the movie.
- Popular music of another generation: Most of us listen to current popular music, but how does music from another era compare? Evaluate music from the 1980s (think big hair and heavy metal), the 1970s (disco anyone?), or even the 1960s (Beatlemania and protest songs) Consider the sounds, lyrics, and political commentary, and evaluate the music’s popularity and appeal.
- A reality TV show: The airwaves are full of reality TV, so pick one of your favorites (or one you can’t stand) and pay close attention to the production value and the actual realism of the show. How much of those shows is actual reality, and how much is clever production?
- A local news broadcast: Think about the quality of the programming and how it compares to national newscasts. Does the local broadcast have continued problems with cameras and microphones, or is the talent good enough to make it to the national market?
5 Evaluation Essay Topics about Technology
- Evaluate the latest smartphone or tablet: Consider the available features, cost, and how user-friendly it is.. Can your grandmother or your five-year-old brother figure out how to use it?
- A new or unique app: Perhaps you’re a fitness nut and want to evaluate the usefulness of a new fitness app. Maybe you’d like to evaluate the negative aspects of a health app that is simply a waste of your hard-earned money. Can you find a free app that’s more effective?
- A new gaming device: Does the new version blow the previous version away with its updated graphics? Are the supposed changes in the new system so small that it’s hardly worth spending any money on the device?
- Digital textbooks: Choose a digital textbook you’re using for a class and evaluate its effectiveness. You might focus on content, design and added features (such as links, videos, and interactive elements). You might also include the text’s cost as part of your evaluation. Are textbooks ever worth the cost?
- A website: Think about what it takes to make a good website. Color schemes, fonts sizes, and layout all affect usability. How easy it is to find information? If you can’t navigate the pages, and you find a number of broken links, it’s pretty easy to give the website a negative evaluation.
5 Evaluation Essay Topics about People
- Online relationships: Online-only relationships are very different from traditional, face-to-face relationships. Evaluate the quality of online relationships. Consider what role they play in people’s lives and how they compare to traditional relationships.
- A street performer: Does the performer have an original act that continually draws a large crowd? Consider the performer’s act, his or her talent, and the overall performance. What does the amount of tips the performer earns say about his or her talents and abilities?
- A coach: Evaluating wins and losses is a good place to start, but consider the coach’s demeanor and relationship with players, too. If most of the players don’t like the coach, yet the team wins games and championships, does this mean he or she is a good coach?
- A professor: I’m sure you have lots to say about your professors, so here’s your chance to evaluate one of them. Consider a professor’s effectiveness as a teacher, whether he or she is a difficult grader, and how much students enjoy the professor’s courses.
- A local politician: Think about the politician’s actions and how much he or she has actually accomplished while in office. Has he or she kept those campaign promises?
With all these great topics, I’m almost certain you’ve found one to spark your interest, so it’s time to make a decision and run with it.
One last piece of advice: Remember to keep a pen and paper (or tablet) handy to take notes about your subject! You don’t want to forget any important details!
Need some additional advice on choosing evaluation essay topics? Read this quick overview and this short article.
When you’re finished writing, make sure to have one of our Kibin editors evaluate and review your paper!
Psst... 98% of Kibin users report better grades! Get inspiration from over 500,000 example essays.
Like any other academic essay, the Evaluation Essay requires a great deal of organization to be a success and earn the student a high grade. And an outline most always helps accomplish this goal.
But first a little background on an Evaluation Essay. And here is an free sample of an evaluation essay.
When faced with an Evaluation Essay writing assignment, the student-writer has to quite literally evaluate a subject – a work of literature, like a play, for example – based on a set of criteria, while also offering their judgment about this subject.
In writing this essay, the student-writer objectively analyzes all sides, aspects and elements of that subject in order to share an arguable, fair evaluation. Ultimately, they are to fully explore the subject and provide points and evidence to illustrate and support their judgment, their evaluation.
Evaluation Essays are written in a format similar to the five-paragraph essay, with an introduction paragraph that has a Thesis Statement (in this case, the student-writer’s evaluation of the subject, followed by the criteria they’re using to make their evaluation); it should have several body paragraphs for illustrating the Thesis (how the writer came up with their evaluation, as well as their criterion they used to come to this conclusion), and lastly a conclusion paragraph tying it all together, indicating the essay is concluding.
While evaluation involves subjectivity and, therefore, opinion, an Evaluation Essay is done properly, effectively and academically when it does not come off as an opinionated piece but rather a reasonable and objective evaluation. The key to producing this kind of essay that earns a high grade is simple: establishing (and then sharing with the reader) clear and fair criteria, judgments and evidence.
Evaluation Essay Writing
Evaluation Essay Topics
Evaluation Essay Sample
Outline for an Evaluation Essay
I. Introduction Paragraph
A. Topic Sentence – organizes the essay’s first paragraph and introduces the essay’s Thesis, acting as a signpost for the essay’s overall argument.
B. Thesis Statement – the paper’s premise that is to be argued or maintained in the essay, generally a sentence or two explaining the meaning of a certain subject, text, etc., which then leads to them listing the criteria (see C.) they are using to evaluate and defend it.
C. The list of the set of criteria the student will use to evaluate the subject.
The Evaluation Essay’s Body Paragraphs directly follow the Introduction Paragraph and defend the Thesis Statement.
For this particular essay, each of the three main points – the criteria in which something is being evaluated – that will defend the essay’s argument are illustrated in each body paragraph one at a time; each body paragraph addresses the various criteria that the student-writer will utilize to logically evidence their case for evaluating the subject.
Each body paragraph should begin with a Transitional Phrase (Firstly, Secondly, Thirdly, Lastly, Next, Subsequently, Furthermore, In conclusion, Finally, etc.) indicating to the reader that a new point is being examined or put forth. Examples are appropriately demonstrated below.
Also, before each body paragraph expounds on the criteria, the student must remember to restate their Evaluation Essay’s Thesis – but not verbatim as it was stated originally in the Introduction Paragraph – in order to keep the reader focused and reminded of the essay’s original argument.
II. Body Paragraph No. 2
A. Transitional Phrase – First of all, Firstly, To start off with, To begin with
B. Restate Thesis
C. First bit of criteria (The first reason why the student’s Thesis is true)
III. Body Paragraph No. 3
A. Transitional Phrase – Secondly, Next, Then, Furthermore, Also, Moreover
B. Restate Thesis
C. Second bit of criteria (The second reason why the student’s Thesis is true)
IV. Body Paragraph No. 4
A. Transitional Phrase – Next, Then, Furthermore, Also, Moreover, Thirdly, Lastly
B. Restate Thesis
C. Third and last bit of criteria (The third and final reason why the student’s Thesis is true)
(More paragraphs can be added to the Body-Paragraph section if another point needs or warrants further illustrating.)
V. Conclusion Paragraph – which ties the essay together to better the reader’s understanding of its argument.
A. Transitional Phrase – Lastly, In conclusion, To sum it up, Ultimately, Finally
B. A Summary of the Essay, from the original Thesis Statement to its three main points of support (the criteria) that are illustrated in the body paragraphs.
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