A.C.E. Writing Response

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Read Time: 2 minutes

Middle school and high school students are often given questions on assignments and tests that require short answers in response to their reading. Giving a simple answer such as “yes” or “no” will not be substantial enough in most cases. In order to receive full marks, students need to be able to demonstrate a more thorough understanding of the provided text. By following a technique called A.C.E. writing response, your student is sure to excel in their short answer questions!

What is the A.C.E. writing response?

A.C.E. stands for:

  • Answer the question
  • Cite evidence
  • Explain the answer. 

By following this format, students will learn to provide a more in-depth response in comparison to one-sentence answers.

Steps to the A.C.E. technique

1. Answer the question

Answers should always be written in complete sentences, in which students rephrase the question in their answer.

2. Cite evidence

Next, cite evidence from the given text to support your answer to the question.

3. Explain the answer

Lastly, students need to explain how their evidence supports their answer.

Now let’s put it all together!

Below is a sample question and how a student should be answering it:

Question: Why is Venus the hottest planet although Mercury is the closest to the Sun?

(Answer and rephrase the question) Venus is the hottest planet although Mercury is the closest to the Sun because (cite) according to the provided text, its thick atmosphere is made up of carbon dioxide. (Explain) The carbon dioxide traps most of the heat emitted from the sun and the layers of clouds create a greenhouse effect, causing the temperature to soar to 869°F. This increase in temperature is what causes Venus to be hotter than Mercury.

Writing takes practice, but by following this writing formula, your student should have their short answer questions in the bag!