TYPE OF PAPER: Prewriting: Comparison And Contrast SUBJECT:Advanced Composition
For this exam, students will
¦ Use the writing process to draft and revise a comparison
and contrast essay
¦ Write an effective thesis statement
¦ Identify, define, and analyze literary elements
¦ Develop critical reading skills
¦ Use responsible research methods to locate appropriate
¦ Use Modern Language Association (MLA) citation and
documentation style to reference secondary source material
correctly and appropriately
For decades, the film industry has adapted beloved books
into movies. When a book is adapted into a film, the story
reaches a wider audience and provides a new perspective on
the text. In this assignment, you will use comparison and
contrast techniques to reveal the ways the plot, characters,
and theme of a story are impacted as elements of the narrative
Topic: To compare and contrast a book and a film based on
Purpose: To show how the changes made affect the story’s
plot, characters, and theme in significant ways
¦ To prepare an outline or graphic organizer that will serve
as the foundation for an 1,800–2,000 word comparison
and contrast essay
Graded Project Graded Project
146 Graded Project
¦ To begin the research process by preparing a bibliography
in Modern Language Association citation and
documentation format that consists of at least six
¦ 2 primary sources: the book and the film
¦ 4 secondary sources: book and film reviews, critiques,
articles about the book and film, profiles of
the author and/or the director and actors that focus
on the content of the work.
Audience: Junior and senior-level distance education students
enrolled at Penn Foster College
The Writing Process
Plan and Prewrite
1. Watch the Comparison and Contrast lecture notes video
on your student portal. This video reviews the essay
requirements and comparison and contrast techniques.
2. Read the book and watch the film you’ve chosen to write
3. Develop the content for your outline/graphic organizer
by freewriting about the changes you’ve noticed. Review
pages 366–369 of your textbook and identify a few bases
a. Are there scenes omitted or added? How does this
affect the sequence of events?
b. What is the central conflict of the book? The film?
How do the author and the director present the conflict?
Are the stakes higher in one or the other?
c. Is the main character’s personality different in the
film? How is it different? How does it affect the way
we understand his/her character?
i. Is the narrator of the story the same? Does any
element of the story change because we can’t be in
the narrator’s head at all times? How does this
change our understanding of the characters or the
Graded Project 147
d. How is theme revealed throughout the book and the
4. Now that you’ve compared and contrasted the book and
the film, freewrite on what the significance of these
changes are to help you develop your ideas for the thesis
5. Work through the Guided Writing Assignment for
Comparison and Contrast prewriting on page 381 of your
textbook. This assignment will help you determine your
purpose and focus for your comparison and contrast
1. The book and the film are your primary sources and
count as two sources in your bibliography and toward
the research requirement for your essay. Be sure that
you have carefully noted where you found them, either
online or in a physical copy/in print.
2. You’ll need a minimum of four other sources. These
sources can be reviews, articles, and interviews related
to the book and film.
3. Go to the library. Your Penn Foster digital library provides
resources that will help you to meet the research
requirements for your essay, but keep in mind that
research in a library, even a digital one, isn’t like searching
online. To learn more, visit the Penn Foster Library site.
Use Expanded Academic ASAP, which is a subscription-only
database available in Penn Foster’s digital
library. You can access the database by clicking on
the Library Services link in your Student Portal. See
the “Academic Support and Online Resources” section
in the introduction to this study guide.
4. Search online, but remember that you’ll need to evaluate
your sources carefully; review pages 569–573 in your
textbook. The following are examples of quality sources.
a. Reviews by book and film critics
b. Interviews with the author and/or the director and
c. Profiles by journalists and other professional writers
Prepare Your Outline/Graphic Organizer
You may choose to submit either a formal outline or a
graphic organizer for this assignment. Your outline or graphic
organizer should be sufficiently detailed to illustrate your
plan for your essay. It should be as detailed as possible.
Reread page 144–146 in your textbook on graphic organizers
1. This assignment (both prewriting and essay) requires you
analyze the significance of the differences between the
book and the film. Please review pages 372–374 in your
textbook for the characteristics of a comparison and contrast
essay and two sample graphic organizers.
2. Be sure to state your main points, secondary points, and
supporting evidence. Include any references to secondary
sources as well, and use MLA parenthetical citation
to link them to your annotated bibliography.
3. Revise your work to ensure that your thesis statement,
main points, evidence, and secondary sources all work
together to address the purpose of the assignment.
For this assignment, you must submit your
¦ Outline or graphic organizer
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