Add to the above, conflict, tension, and resolution- the basics to look for when deciding what to report on after a good (or not so good, read). We tend to draw a simple cliff like diagram when doing a text analysis and draw the characters as if they were literally climbing the face of the cliff, chapter by chapter. The tip is the turning point after which it is quite literally a downhill process- a tidying up of loose ends within the story and the conclusion. The key to an effective analysis is recognizing the various strands, and noting the author’s signals. The question then for students to be aware of involves the “how” as well as the “what”. How does an author create the tension? What literary techniques were involved? The amount of detail that goes into the answer will depend on the level of the student responding.
– key tip – to become comfortable using literary terms check out: http://www.uncp.edu/home/canada/work/allam/general/glossary.htm