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Writing sample???


Mocha001
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<_<I graduated in 2006 and now I am applying for my MA. I need a writing sample to submit. Now, it has been more than 4 years since I finished my BA.

I went back to community college in 2009 fall and started taking philosophy to get used to school and also improve some of my writing

skills. I explained my situation to my professor. He understood my situation and he expected me a lot more than other students.

My final paper in the class was to choose a philosopher and analyze his/her theory by applying things we learned in the class. He asked other students to research by using google

and other non academic sites, but he expected me to go through academic journals and support my analysis.

The paper was 10 pages.

Now, I have only one 15 pages big paper from my undergraduate. All other papers were reaction papers and some projects which did not really have any references.

I got A on this paper. But, when I looked at the paper again, my writing skill was not as competitive as the one I wrote in this philosophy class at community college.

My husband who is MA student said I should submit the most current and good paper rather.

I am not sure what to do.

I do not know which one to choose.

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there are several reasons why the philosophy paper sounds better: it's current, it sounds better written, it shows development you've experienced since your BA, and you seem more satisfied with it. Length sounds like the only thing in favor of the older paper; quality is better than length (you can always add to the 10-pager, if you need to).

you don't tell us what the older paper is about (subject-wise), or which is more suited to your MA program. But in my opinion, a well thought-out philosophy paper should have appeals to almost any Humanities department.

Edited by Henry Hudson
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My old paper was media criticism paper.

I analyzed a movie with a theory we learned in the class.

I am communication studies major and my main research will be statistical analysis on instructional communication.

I took a social science statistic class in this summer and wrote a paper. The problem was that

only 4 pages statistical report and the rest of 10-11 pages were all statistical data.

So it did not help much to show my writing skill.

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My old paper was media criticism paper.

I analyzed a movie with a theory we learned in the class.

For graduate admissions, you might want to show a more engaged work than this. Your philosophy paper sounds like it may fit the bill - outside research is key. If you simply apply a theory learned in class to a text/movie/etc., that doesn't show engagement with the subject the way a research paper (like your philosophy paper) does.

I'm not very familiar with your field, but I would further suggest that you try to connect your writing sample to your SOP (your research interests) - I'm not confident (because of my unfamiliarity with your field and your paper topics) either way that this can be done, so maybe someone else can speak to this.

And, make sure a professor reads your revisions before you apply.

Edited for a typo

Edited by Chumlee
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My husband was saying the same thing. My philosophy paper was like a literature review.

I read journals and analyzed the origin of the theory and its assumptions.

I am a communication studies major, so I study rhetorical theories and psychology theories.

Taking philosophy was a good review of rhetoric.

So what I wrote in the philosophy class was closely related to my study at graduate school.

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