How to Write a Response (Reaction) Paper? | Assignment Collections |


A response (reaction) paper is a written essay in which the writer discusses, analyzes, and evaluates the argument presented in an assignment. A professional writer can help you with this task. A response (reaction) paper differs from a typical essay. A response paper generally has the same reference, bibliography, and citation pages as a research paper.

There are several parts to a response paper, each of which is critical in your achieving an excellent grade. Some sections are common elements of any successful essay, but other parts are specific to the response paper style. Use these tips, and your paper will turn out brilliantly!

What is a Reaction Paper?

A response paper is just a mechanism to record your insights and opinions on any given subject and the fundamental assumptions, principles, and concepts that support those insights and views. The writings in response are not brief or formal in style. The reader is already familiar with the work, but s/he would want to know your thoughts and opinions about it. The writer’s primary interest is in the thoughts, beliefs, attitudes, and, most importantly, values and their fundamental understanding.

A return letter might be viewed as a passionate letter, a brilliant idea, or even a discussion with the author or creator of the work of art or literature. The response essay is unhurried, expressive, and vivid in style, capturing even the smallest of the elements that caught your attention. You can convey to your reader that you have read, listened to, watched, or otherwise observed the work of art and have critically examined it by expressing sound answers.

Reaction papers are usually assigned when students need to analyze or evaluate another person’s argument or point of view. These papers can be used for many purposes, such as:

  • Discussing opposing viewpoints.
  • Addressing a controversial topic.
  • Explaining an idea using different perspectives and opinions.
  • Developing critical thinking skills.

How to Start a Response Paper

The response paper has two purposes:

  • To give the writer’s opinion on the subject matter
  • To provide evidence that supports their opinion on the subject matter

The first thing you need to do before starting your response paper is to read through the chapter or article carefully. Use your highlighter to mark important points as they come up during the reading. Highlight the relevant points to your thesis statement. Do not highlight anything that doesn’t support your argumentation.

Make sure you have enough time to write down all your ideas before starting with the actual writing down process of the essay itself. If this is not possible for you, then it would be better if you could get some help from an online essay writing service like Best Custom Writing Service, which offers assistance in writing essays from scratch as well as editing them after completion as well as proofreading them prior submission by clients (at least until time of the deadline).

Main character

Who is the main character? What strengths and weaknesses? How do they overcome challenges? These questions help you write an essay.


A story must have a plot and conflict or problem, which needs to be solved by the hero or heroine of the story or novel being written about. The author wants us to identify with their characters so we can also experience what they are going through emotionally, intellectually, physically, etc. In addition, we need to outline how each of these conflicts is resolved by our protagonists at the end of their journey through life’s obstacles.


Where does your book take place (country/city)? When does it take place (period)?

What Should a Response Paper Include?

A response paper should include the following:

An introduction

The introduction should provide background information on the topic at hand. It should also include your thesis statement and your main argument against the topic. The introduction is an integral part of any academic writing. It should capture your reader’s attention and draw them towards reading further. It should also help them understand what will be discussed in the paper, why it is being discussed and how it will be discussed.

Body paragraphs

These sections present evidence to support your claims and ideas. Each paragraph should contain only one idea or part of an idea and no more than three sentences per paragraph. Use evidence from texts, interviews, statistics, research studies, etc., to support your claims. This covers the main points and ideas in your paper. The body section of your response paper should give a detailed explanation of what your topic is all about. You can include a few examples from different sources that support your claim or argument. You can also give citations from references or journals if you use any as evidence for your arguments.


The conclusion summarizes what you have said in previous paragraphs and restates your original claim against the topic/thesis statement. In this section, you wrap up what you’ve said in the body and state whether or not you agree with the viewpoint expressed in the essay prompt or assignment instructions. If there’s more than one possible answer, explain how you reached your conclusion.

Response Papers Examples

Consider the following statement: “A good response paper should be written in a way that makes it interesting, clear, and easy to read.” Write an essay that explains how you can use this statement to write a good essay.

You should say:

  • What is meant by an essay, and what are its components
  • How these components can be used to write an interesting essay
  • How can these components be used to make your paper clear and easy to read?
  • How do we keep our teeth healthy?
  • How did dinosaurs live?
  • How do we keep ourselves safe on the internet?
  • A Response Paper Example on “Should We Legalize Marijuana?”
  • A Response Paper Example on “Should We Legalize Abortion?”
  • A Response Paper Example on “Should We Legalize Prostitution?”

What Makes a Good Response Paper?

You need to know what makes a good response paper:

  1. A good response paper doesn’t have to be extended. It can be as short as 300 words. However, the content must be detailed and well researched.
  2. The writer must use an active voice throughout their paper. This helps impact the reader’s mind, making them want to read more about your topic or opinion.
  3. You can also add some facts about your subject matter if you like; however, make sure that your points are factual, not just opinions or guesses.
  4. Make sure that your argument is relevant to the topic at hand; otherwise, no one will pay attention to your writing or even read it at all; this means that you should avoid presenting irrelevant information as talking points or facts; instead, focus on what matters most: the topic itself and how you can prove your point of view regarding it using examples from real life situations (this will make readers interested in reading your work).
  5. A response paper should be written in a clear and precise manner. It should contain sufficient evidence to support your opinion and demonstrate your knowledge of the subject. The use of evidence will help you write an influential response paper on any topic.
  6. It is essential to focus on writing a solid thesis statement early in your essay because it will guide you throughout the writing process. Your thesis statement should be specific and state your position on the issue so readers can easily understand what you are trying to say about it in your essay.
  7. For readers to understand what you are trying to say about it in your essay, use concrete examples from real-world situations or other sources of information such as books or articles from credible websites.
  8. The paper has to be written in MLA style based on a given topic. The paper must be one page long with about 500 words and five sources cited correctly.

17 Tips for Writing a Response Paper

The following are some of the tips that would help you write an influential response paper:

  1. Do not use slang words or jargon words when writing a response paper. Use simple language that is understandable to everyone.
  2. You can use quotes from other sources to support your argument or to back up your claim but make sure to cite them correctly so that it does not look like plagiarism. Write a thesis statement based on the prompt and your previous research, not some vague idea you’ve had in your head for a while. Make sure it’s clear and specific, and take time to brainstorm possible topics for your essay before you begin writing.
  3. Use the right words and phrases like “I agree/disagree,” “I believe/not believe,” or “In my opinion….” Make sure that your sentences are structured adequately with all necessary conjunctions included.
  4. Write a good introduction paragraph where you provide a brief background about the topic at hand and include your thesis statement (or main idea). In this paragraph, it is essential not to use many complex words or complicated phrases; keep it simple so all readers can understand it. The introduction should also include reviewing previous research on your subject matter.
  5. Include a body paragraph for each point you want to make about the topic; this should consist of a minimum of five paragraphs with at least four sentences each. Each body paragraph should have a different purpose; some might have arguments, while others might be used for evidence or counterargument.
  6. Discuss all sides of an issue by examining different perspectives and presenting evidence from credible sources to support those perspectives. To do this effectively, you must be able to organize your thoughts into paragraphs with complete sentences and properly developed paragraphs with three or four sentences each that flow logically from one into another while supporting your main idea (thesis). You should also include at least one summary paragraph at the end of your essay.
  7. Use direct quotes from credible sources (at least three) throughout your body paragraphs by using indentation for each quote followed by quotation marks around.
  8. Write a detailed outline before writing your essay to ensure that you have thought about all possible points and arguments that you will use in your article. Ensure each paragraph addresses one specific idea or issue on the topic.
  9. Have an objective point of view when writing your essay. You should be able to provide logical reasons why you believe what you believe and state facts that support those reasons rather than just stating opinions based on feelings or emotions alone.
  10. When writing your response paper, you must give examples from your own life or other people’s lives so that your readers can relate to them quickly. Use specific examples from the text (or other sources) to support your argument. This will help readers know exactly what you are referring to when you make an assertion or claim about the text.
  11. Make sure that you have a strong thesis statement that is developed throughout the paper and ties all points together smoothly. This thesis statement should be supported by concrete evidence from the reading assignment(s). Your thesis should not be too general or vague; it should be specific enough so that it can be proven with evidence from the reading assignment(s).
  12. Use plenty of quotes from the reading assignment(s) to support your thesis statement and point out any significant ideas or facts which help prove your thesis statement true/false (depending on what kind of paper you’re writing). Quoting allows you to refer back to what another author has stated in their work instead of having to paraphrase their ideas – this gives your reader more information about what exactly someone else thinks about. Know the difference between giving evidence and providing examples; evidence supports claims; examples illustrate a claim but do not prove it.
  13. Ensure you have a strong introduction paragraph with a catchy hook sentence that will make the reader want to continue reading the paper
  14. Make sure to include your thesis statement at the end of your introduction paragraph and in each body paragraph so that it flows naturally for the reader and keeps him interested in reading more about the topic.
  15. Don’t get bogged down by making every paragraph complete; use transitions such as however, moreover, furthermore, thus, also, finally, etc., to keep ideas flowing smoothly throughout your response paper.
  16. Make sure to use proper punctuation marks at the end of each sentence; otherwise, it will make your writing look messy and unprofessional.
  17. Use correct grammar and spelling throughout your response paper; otherwise, it will be difficult for others to understand what you have written down.

Bottom Line

Whether you’re writing a response paper for a college course or simply honing your writing skills, the process is relatively the same. The only thing that changes is what to focus on. As long as you take your time and outline before you start writing, the process should go smoothly. Plus, hopefully, you’ll even learn something in the process. After all, isn’t that the true benefit of taking one of these courses?


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