A DBQ Is An Essay Question That Asks You To Take A .

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A DBQ is an essay question that asks you to take a position on an issue that hasseveral possible answers. There is no “right” or “correct” response. The question isdesigned to give you the opportunity to craft and defend a thesis based upon yourknowledge and your interpretation of the evidence presented to you in the primarysources and other documents.H2

There will be one document-based-question on the exam. It will have one of the followinghistorical thinking skills as its main focus: causation, change and continuity over time,comparison, interpretation, or periodization.All DBQs will also always assess the historical thinking skills of historical argumentation,appropriate use of relevant historical evidence, contextualization and synthesis.Expectations:In Your response you should do the following: State a relevant thesis that directly addresses all parts of the question Support the thesis or a relevant argument with evidence from all, or all but one, of thedocuments Focus the analysis of each document on at least one of the following: intendedaudience, purpose, historical context, and/or point of view. Support your argument with analysis of historical examples outside the documents. Connect historical phenomena (events, people, processes) relevant to your argument tobroader events or processes. Synthesize (combine) the elements above into a persuasive essayH3

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First, read the question carefully and try to determine the essence of the question. For example, whattype of question is it: What historical skill is it testing?causation,Compare causes and/or effects, including between short and long termeffects. (I.e. students should move from describing causes to analyzingand evaluating interaction of multiple causes and/or effects).Analyze and evaluate the interaction of multiple causes and/or effects.Assess historical contingency by distinguishing among coincidence,causation, and correlation, as well as critiquing existing interpretations ofcause and effect.change and continuity over time,Recognize, describe, and analyze historical patterns of continuity andchange over time (of varying lengths).Connect patterns of continuity and change over time to larger historicalprocesses of themes.comparison,Describe, compare, and evaluate multiple historical developments withinone society, one or more developments across or between differencesocieties, and in various chronological and geographical contexts.Explain and evaluate multiple and differing perspectives on a givenhistorical phenomenon.interpretation,Analyze diverse historical interpretations.H6

Evaluate how historians’ perspectives influence their interpretationsand how models of historical interpretation change over time.PeriodizationExplain ways that historical events and processes can be organizedwithin blocks of time.Recognize that the choice of a specific period gives a higher value toone historical narrative, region, or groups.Analyze and evaluate competing models of periodization of US history.H6

A thesis statement is a positive assertion regarding an issue about which reasonablepeople may hold different opinions. You must have a thesis before you can prove it.Your first paragraph should reflect that you have a thesis and that you understandthe complexity of the question. Remember, there are no simple answers to a DBQ—if an easy response existed, the question wouldn’t have been asked in the first place.The level of sophistication of your analysis and the degree to which yousuccessfully prove your thesis are crucial in receiving a high score.H7

The analysis of the documents should provide evidence to support the thesis. While evidence from at least 6 documents must be included, the essay shouldincorporate more in-depth analysis of at least four documents (i.e. aMAJORITY of the documents provided) – examining Point of view Intended audience PurposeA strong essay, however, does not simply list the characteristics of onedocument after another. Instead, it makes connections betweendocuments or parts of documents to craft a convincing argument.A good essay would observe that the documents also reflect differencesin point of view, audience, format, etc.H8

Outside knowledge might follow up on specific references in the documents.In other cases, you might use outside knowledge to provide context and demonstratecontinuity and change.The inclusion of knowledge that extends beyond the documents themselves shouldstrengthen the argument and demonstrate an appreciation and awareness of thenuances/complexities/contradictions of history.H9

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In the first paragraph of your essay, you need to provide insight (that is, analysis,perspective, and point of view) into the complexity of the question. This isparticularly important if you want to get the highest essay scores. You should makea strong first impression. Try to impress the reader with your analysis of thequestion. Above all, the reader should know your position on the questionunequivocally after the first paragraph.O’Brien Special - Your opening paragraph should contain the following:1. A brief definition of the terms and parameters as you understand them2. Insightful commentary on the question and its complexity3. Your thesis (MAKE IT NUANCED – RESTATES THE QUESTION BUTALSO INTRODUCES YOUR RATIONALE/REASONS)H12

Don’t editorialize. Stick to the facts. Think of the essay like a sports broadcast: youneed to provide the color analysis, not the play-by-play. Instead of saying, “Johnsonstrikes out,” you need to say, “Johnson has proven again and again that he can’thandle an inside fastball.” When you make a point, be sure that it links to yourthesis and supports it. When you finish a paragraph, look back and make sure itconnects with your thesis. In addition, you need to provide a substantial amount ofoutside information and cite a majority of the documents in your essay.H13

Think of the opening and closing paragraphs as mini-essays that lay out your entirecase. However, the opening paragraph far exceeds the closing one in importance.H14

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Now you are ready to revisit your thesis, You should provide evidence of both, butpick a side. Remember, every issue has contradictions – you are to highlight them,and come to a clear conclusion.Perhaps jot down a rough outline of the body paragraphs.Write an introductory paragraph with a clear thesis that answers the question in onesentence.H18

change and continuity over time, Recognize, describe, and analyze historical patterns of continuity and change over time (of varying lengths). Connect patterns of continuity and change over time to larger historical processes of themes. comparison, Describe, compare, and evaluate multiple historical developments within

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