A DBQ is a kind of exam written for the classes of history. Students taking such classes know what this means to write an essay according to the documents provided. There are useful things to remember while writing this type of writing as it can contribute to your general score that you will receive at the end of the semester or term. So, let’s get started.
Read the Question Carefully
Most of you may have experienced a fear of exams which could hinder thinking or even attempts to remember something. And after the exams the answer would somehow pop-up in the mind, but for nothing. Thus, exams are what make us worry and get nervous, consequently leading you to forget what normally would be always in your mind. So, the first step is to read the question so as to understand it fully.
- read a question,
- determine the timeline of the question,
- determine the category being asked (it can be political, social, or economical),
- understand what kind of skill needed to write this exam (it can be comparing some facts, analyzing causes and effects, or something relevant to that).
Carefully Study Given Information
There are many types of documents that you will be provided. The number of documents can vary too. So, there might be some primary, secondary documents along with maps. charts, etc. The number can vary from three to seven. Regardless of the number and type of the documents provided, you may read or look through them. The better you understand what you are analyzing, the completer and more efficient your essay would be.
- understand what type of document you are provided,
- highlight important facts that can be used,
- understand the relation of the documents.
Employing Documents for Writing
The material provided can be your friend or foe depending on how you manage it. Here are some important things to keep in mind. First of all, in what historical context these documents were written. You are to understand what historical atmosphere of that particular time contributed or led to these documents. The other important aspect is to know for whom a particular document was written. To understand the audience is one of the life hacks of this type of essay.
Also, it is worth mentioning that you will have to determine the purpose of the documents you are being presented. After understanding this, it can be mentioned in your exam. In addition, to all these mentioned, it is quite beneficial to grasp the point of view of the document. That would be helpful for your work.
Work Out A Decent Thesis for Your Paper
A thesis is your answer to the question where you will defend your position. The first important thing to do is to deal with a question. Your main goal is to answer the question delivered by the exam paper. Here, the better your argumentation is, the better the grade you will receive. Another important note to keep in mind is to avoid ambiguity while writing. You’d better avoid general phrases because your writing should be based on facts.
About the Grades
There are several things you have to follow in order to be able to have a good grade. You will be judged according to how well you have made your arguments. The following are the criteria to bear in mind.
- Thesis: your answer to the main question and how it makes a good argument.
- Grasping provided context of the documents: contextualization is given through the time and situation, at the moment when the documents were written.
- Providing sufficient evidence: relevant historical facts are important in supporting your arguments.
- Analysis: your critical thinking relevant to this paper is very important. How you analyze the information will play an important role in your grading.
All in All
Once you do realize the process and how it should be done, you might be more aware about the rules of the game. Experience will come with more practice.