The Science Of Scientific Writing    Set 7     Set 7-AssessingSecond pageThird pageFourth pageExampleExercise 1Exercise 2Exercise 3Exercise 4Exercise 5Exercise 6Final Page Set 7.

Course Home

OVERVIEW: The way to well-written science

How to do the Course


PART I: Paragraphs and Sentences

SET A: Paragraphs: The Maps Behind Them

SET B: Paragraphs: Using Maps to Meet Readers' Expectations

SET C: Paragraphs with Something Extra: Points and Tails

SET D: The Generic Section: Expectations and Maps as Blueprints

SET E: Scientific Sections: The Methods and Results

SET F: Scientific Sections: The Discussion

SET G : Scientific Sections: The Introduction

SET H : Sentences

SET I : The Paper as a Whole



PART II: The Paper and its Sections


SET 1: Argument Parts

SET 2: Indicator Words

SET 3: Refining Claims

SET 4: Locating Arguments in Prose

SET 5: Rationale's Essay Planner

SET 6: Evidence in Arguments: Basis Boxes

SET 7: Assessing

SET 8: More on Assessing

SET 9: Analysis Maps

SET 10: Assessing Again

Synthesis 1: Position-Early Paragraphs

Synthesis 2: Position-Final Paragraphs

Synthesis 3: Writing a Discussion I

Synthesis 4: Writing a Discussion II

Exercise 3

This time we'll go all the way and evaluate a whole argument.

1. Drag this map onto your workspace and evaluate the basis box first, then the reason, then the position.

Drag this onto the workspace

Drag this image onto the workspace to proceed.  You must be using the inbuilt browser in Rationale 1.3 or later.


  • Start with the basis box: Is this a reliable source of information?  (You already thought about this in set 6)
  • Next look at the reason: what confidence do you have in it, given your assessment of its basis?
    • If you think the basis is reliable, ask yourself: does this reason give support for the position? How good a reason is it - strong or weak?
    • If you think the basis is a poor source of information ask yourself: could I still reasonably accept this claim on other grounds?  If the answer is no, then the reason can't provide any support for the position.
  • Now evaluate the position: what confidence do you have in this?  If the reason doesn't support it, can you think of any other grounds for accepting it?
  • Reflect all these decisions on your map by selecting each box in turn and using the 'evaluate' section of the ribbon to add icons to the map

2. Check your work against the model.



Content of this page drawn in whole or part from the Austhink Rationale Exercises with permission from Austhink.