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DBQ stands for Document Based Questions. In such questions, students are given specific documents which must be studied carefully and then the given questions must be answered. Mainly, the student has to write an essay after analyzing the documents. This type of essay was the part of AP history exams in the past but now it is gaining popularity. Many students find it difficult to answer such questions due to lack of awareness but this guide will help you in writing the best document based question essay. Previous knowledge is a major component for writing a DBQ essay.
To write a DBQ essay, you need to be aware of some rules or tips. The key points for writing such essays are:
The basic outline of a DBQ essay is similar to other essay types. It consists of an introduction, the body paragraphs, and the conclusion. The minimum number of paragraphs should be four; introduction, body paragraph 1, body paragraph 2, conclusion.
Once you have designed the thesis statement, you can put the ideas in a table that shows the document number, information taken from the document, information from other resources.
A strong introduction is responsible for extra points when you are writing a DBQ essay.
After the introduction, explain the thesis statement by providing necessary supporting details from the given documents. Make sure you do not copy all the points from the documents. Blend your knowledge with the points from documents and that would be the best. Keep the AP history requirements in mind while blending your points. For AP US history, you will be asked to provide maximum details from the outside sources while some points can be cited from the given documents.
At least two paragraphs are necessary for a document based essay. Each paragraph should explain one point. For bonus points, prove that the points you have stated have evidence in the documents. Be precise while providing information. Your point of view should be clear in a minimum number of words. Writing the whole stories will not give you marks.
Apart from how to write the body paragraphs, be confident with your points and show that you have understood the period really well.
After the body paragraphs, a strong conclusion will make your way to bonus marks. A strong conclusion and introduction have equal importance. Restate the thesis statement and summarize your discussion into two or three sentences. The conclusion should not include any new point and must be brief.
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Explain the causes of the rise of women rights movement in the period 1940-1975.
Suppose this is the question in your exam.
To be precise, analyze the documents carefully. Do not copy all the points from documents; add information from other resources as well. Manage your time for the better reading of documents and then writing the essay. Keep a five-minute margin for revising the essay; everyone can make mistakes while writing.