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University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma

Banned Books Week: Essay Contest

Contest Details

American Library Association Banned Books Week Essay Contest

Length: <500 words

Possible Topics, Pick one:

·        How would the world be different if a particular work had been banned;

·       Describe your experience with a particular book challenge incident;

·        What is your relationship with a particular book from the list of challenged and banned books;

·        Discuss the importance of protecting books from banning.

A list of the most frequently banned books can be found at the following site: .

Submissions: Submit your essay to the front desk of Nash Library by 4:00 pm on Friday, October 5, 2012.

Decisions will be made and announced on Monday October 8, 2012.

Prizes: 1st prize – 2 banned books and $25 gift certificate to the USAO bookstore

    2nd prize – 1 banned book and a banned books t-shirt

Eligibility: Only USAO students are eligible to participate.

Format: Type your essay, double-spaced (on one side of white 8 1/2 by 11 inch paper.) Include your name and e-mail address on a cover sheet. [This cover will be removed from your essay before it is judged, i. e., the judge will not know your name while your paper is being judged.]

How Will Your Essay Be Judged?

The decision of the judge is final. Your essay will be judged based on five criteria:

1.      Focus: how well your essay responds to the chosen topic

2.      Organization: the structure of your essay and the strength of your thesis statement

3.      Originality: Creativity in writing

4.      Voice: how well your writing engages the reader

5.      Style and Mechanics: how well the essay is written in terms of grammar, spelling, and punctuation, as well as word choice and sentence construction

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