Writing Analytically (w/ MLA9E & APA7E Updates),
8th Edition

David Rosenwasser, Jill Stephen

ISBN-13: 9781337559461
Copyright 2019 | Published
384 pages | List Price: USD $93.95

Learning to write well requires learning to use writing as a tool to think well--and this book shows you how. WRITING ANALYTICALLY leads you through the process of analysis and synthesis and helps you to generate original, well-developed ideas. Whether you're already a confident writer or someone who feels stranded amidst your notes and sources--waiting for the light bulb of inspiration to rescue you--this book will help you improve your skills. It's built on a series of tools for thinking that proceed step-by-step. Applying the tools will enable you to see more and arrive at better ideas about whatever you're analyzing. You'll learn to determine which details are important in your subject, how to go about figuring out why they are important, and most important, how to talk and write about what they mean.


1. The Five Analytical Moves.
2. Reading Analytically.
3. Interpretation: Moving from Observation to Implication.
4. Responding to Traditional Writing Assignments More Analytically.
5. Thinking Like a Writer.
6. Reasoning from Evidence to Claims.
7. Finding and Evolving a Thesis.
8. Conversing with Sources: Writing the Researched Paper.
9. Finding, Evaluating, and Citing Sources.
10. From Paragraphs to Papers: Forms and Formats Across the Curriculum.
11. Style: Choosing Words, Shaping Sentences.
12. Nine Basic Writing Errors (BWEs) and How to Fix Them.

  • David Rosenwasser

    David Rosenwasser teaches at Muhlenberg College, a small liberal arts college in Pennsylvania, where he has been since the late 1980s. He and Jill Stephen created and implemented the Writing Across the Curriculum program there through a series of faculty seminars. During these seminars, Dr. Rosenwasser and Dr. Stephen discovered that while content faculty from across the disciplines maintained disciplinary-specific writing protocols, they essentially wanted the same thing from student writing: analysis. From this premise, WRITING ANALYTICALLY was born. Dr. Rosenwasser received his B.A. from Grinnell College and his Ph.D. from the University of Virginia in the theory and history of narrative. His current interests include contemporary Irish literature and comic theory. His most recent literary papers include a study of the contemporary Irish writer Edna O'Brien in relation to the work of Joyce and Yeats as well as an analysis of the politics of Bruce Springsteen's albums during the Bush presidency, written collaboratively with a political science professor.

  • Jill Stephen

    Jill Stephen teaches at Muhlenberg College, a small liberal arts college in Pennsylvania, where she’s been since the late 1980s. Along with David Rosenwasser, she created and implemented the Writing Across the Curriculum program there through a series of faculty seminars. In these seminars, they discovered that content faculty from across the disciplines, although they maintained disciplinary-specific writing protocols, essentially wanted the same thing from student writing: analysis. From this premise, their textbook, Writing Analytically, was born. Stephen worked in the expository writing program at New York University under Lil Brannon and Cy Knoblauch. She received her B.A. from the University of Illinois at Champaign-Urbana and received her Ph.D. from NYU on rhetorical theory as evidenced in Renaissance poetry and prose. Aside from her writing with Rosenwasser on composition and writing program administration, she writes on poetry, especially Renaissance lyrics. Her current interests include the poetry of Frank O’Hara, Emily Dickinson, and contemporary Irish women writers.

  • A new chapter, "Thinking Like a Writer" (Chapter 5), helps students become more confident about and more engaged with their own writing. Writing prompts include description-based observation exercises, ways of keeping a Writer's Notebook and experiments with writing as a means of learning to use writing as a mode of inquiry. To emphasize making the writing classroom a collaborative space, the chapter presents alternatives to the usual ways of prompting revision and of working in groups with other writers, such as writers' boot camps and writing marathons.

  • Chapters are organized into three units to better distinguish phases of the writing process and different levels of concern. Unit One contains the book's primary observation heuristics along with definition of the aims and methods of analysis. Unit Two addresses issues relevant to writing analytical papers such as finding and developing a thesis and putting sources into conversation in research-based writing. Unit Three explains forms and formats across the curriculum.

  • The interpretation chapter (Chapter 3) now comes immediately after and is better connected with the first two chapters: "The Five Analytical Moves" and "Reading Analytically." Chapter 1 and 2's focus on moving from observation to implication--what the authors call asking and answering the "so what?" question--now leads logically into Chapter 3's discussion of the basic cognitive moves involved in interpretation, such as establishing an interpretive context.

  • The table of contents more clearly flags each chapter's heuristics, Try This exercises, and Voices from Across the Curriculum sections.

  • A two-page chart of the book's heuristics appears on the inside back cover.

  • Every chapter is aimed at helping students develop an analytical frame of mind. While analysis often leads to an argumentative claim, the book suggests that too much argument-based writing leaps too swiftly to judgments, resulting in overly general or clichéd positions. By concentrating on concrete and step-by-step ways to sharpen observation and move to implication, the book seeks to remedy this pervasive problem in student writing.

  • Chapters 1 and 2 offer habits for entering the analytical frame of mind so that students can learn to do what strong thinkers do when they're confronted with data. The chapters also discuss counterproductive habits of mind to help students identify and work through common problems such as the premature leap and the judgment reflex.

  • Chapter 4 presents ways to make common assignments (such as summary, personal response, agree/disagree, compare/contrast and definition) more analytical.

  • Because many instructors find it challenging to break the mold of the five-paragraph essay, Chapter 6 presents organizational strategies that can act as alternatives to formats that inhibit in-depth analysis of evidence.

  • Chapter 7 offers a more flexible approach to thesis-driven writing, showing students how to use complicating evidence to make a thesis evolve.

  • Designed to be used in writing-intensive courses in a variety of subject areas, as well as in first-year composition courses, WRITING ANALYTICALLY addresses similarities and differences across the disciplines. For example, Voices from Across the Curriculum boxes speak directly to students on stylistic, rhetorical and epistemological differences across the curriculum. Chapter 10 includes a common analytical format that underlies virtually all academic writing.

  • Sample readings (both brief and extended) represent a wide range of disciplines, including biology, chemistry, sociology, literary studies, political science, film studies and art history.

  • The book addresses the challenge of getting students to read more carefully and actively. Chapter 2, "Reading Analytically," offers heuristics that help students take their reading comprehension beyond the perfunctory apprehension of "the gist." Chapter 8 offers strategies for analyzing secondary sources as well as methods for avoiding plagiarism, integrating quotations and writing an abstract. Chapter 9 presents strategies for getting started, finding quality on the web and citing sources--all keyed to the most recent documentation styles from the MLA, APA, Chicago and CSE style guides.

  • Writing exercises take two forms: end-of-chapter assignments that could produce papers, and informal Try This exercises that are embedded near skills being discussed in a chapter. Many of the Try This exercises can generate papers, but usually they're more limited in scope, asking readers to experiment with various kinds of data gathering and analysis. In this regard, the book assumes that the classroom can be a site for writing and collaborative discussion of that writing, as a way of building a community of writers/learners.

Cengage provides a range of supplements that are updated in coordination with the main title selection. For more information about these supplements, contact your Learning Consultant.

Online Instructor's Manual for Rosenwasser/Stephen's Writing Analytically, 8th

MindTap: Writing Analytically (w/ MLA9E & APA7E Updates) 12 Months

Cengage eBook: Writing Analytically (w/ MLA9E & APA7E Updates) 12 Months