Critique Questions for Non-fiction

Main Idea, Tone, Audience

What is the main idea the writer is trying to get across?

Is the writer trying to be humorous, serious, straightforward, etc?
Does this emotion/tone work for the piece?

Who does the piece seem to be written for? Who is the audience?
Is the tone, language, and reading level appropriate for that audience?

Details

Does the writer give enough details and examples to illustrate what he/she is trying to get across?
Where are there good details? Where could more be given?
Do the details slow your reading or bog you down?

Order, Pacing

Does the piece follow a logical order? Are there any places where you got lost?
Does the pace seem appropriate for the type of information being covered?
Are there details that should be given earlier or later in the piece?
Does the conclusion summarize the main points effectively or bring the work to a satisfying end?

Genre’

What type of piece does the writing seem to be – an article, an essay, a column, a book or book chapter?

Extras, Overall

If there are sidebars, charts, graphs, pictures, or other supporting documents do they support the premise, theme, arguments, or hypothesis?

Overall, what did you like or not like about the piece?