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Document Based Questions

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1 Document Based Questions
How to Write a DBQ! Document Based Questions

2 What is a “DBQ?” An essay that answers a specific question.
An essay that cites specific documents to support the writer’s point.

3 3. Write an amazing thesis
1. Analyze the Documents How to write a great DBQ 2. Group the Documents 5. Write an awesome DBQ! 3. Write an amazing thesis 4. Organize the Essay

4 1. Analyzing the Documents
Source: Where from? Is that significant? What point of view or possible bias? Important facts? Inferences? Main idea? How does this document answer the question? [Which bucket does it fit into?]

5 2. Grouping/“Bucketing” Documents
Group your documents into 3 “buckets” consider grouping by similar qualities, contents, or purposes. Each group is the basis of a paragraph. Use a majority of the documents to get full credit for the essay. (1/2 plus 1) Docs 2, 13 Docs 1, 3, 7 Docs 4, 10, 11

6 Write an AWESOME Thesis
Great essays have a clear thesis statement Answers the question Takes a position Preview main points “road map” of the essay (your buckets!) Think of it like a “chicken-foot” THESIS Point 3 Point 2 Point 1

7 Using the “Chicken Foot”
Thesis is the leg Each group (main point) will branch out with supporting ideas. (toes) Reason 1 Carnegie was a hero (or was not, or a mixture) because… Reason 2 Reason 3

8 4. Organize the DBQ Introductory Paragraph Body Paragraph Conclusion
Thesis Statement! Body Paragraph Docs __, __, and __ Conclusion

9 5. Write your Essay! Outline provides structure
Keep the body paragraphs in the order of your thesis statement Create an intro and conclusion!

10 The Introductory Paragraph
Establish TIME & PLACE. Use a clear THESIS STATEMENT. Allude to the MAIN POINTS or categories that develop and support thesis statement (your “buckets” of documents) Focus on the question at hand—do NOT begin with a “flowery” sentence!

11 Body Paragraphs Identify sub-topic or category in the first sentence.
Include the documents that are relevant to support the ideas in the paragraph. Use most of the documents given [60%]. Be sure to indicate Point-of-view/ bias. Bring in supportive outside information Why were these documents selected?

12 Conclusion Start with a “concluding phrase.”
Restate your thesis statement a bit differently. Put your essay answer in a larger historical perspective.

13 You’re Ready! Now go conquer your DBQ!

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