Essay Writing: Basic Guidelines and Tips
What is Essay Writing?
Essay writing is a skill that many kids dread developing, but it is one that will be useful in high school, college, and even in your future employment. Writing essays effectively can make the process more pleasurable and improve your ability to organise and communicate your ideas.
It is customary to adhere to a particular format when writing an essay. Applying the pattern to different essays will get much easier once you’ve done it a few times and understand how to organise an essay.
Whatever major you decide on, you should be able to write an effective essay. Here, we’ll go through the fundamentals of essay writing as well as some pointers to make the process easier.
Types of Essay Writing
An essay is like a discussion, in that sense, you and another person can engage in a variety of conversations. You might be telling them a personal tale, even debating a subject.
It follows a similar structure for other types of essays. Every essay kind will have its own set of objectives or aims, much like a casual conversation.
To persuade a buddy, for instance, that you are correct in an argument is your objective. An argumentative essay follows the same rules.
During your stay in school, you’ll probably encounter the following common essay formats:
This kind of essay is similar to narrating a story, but one without dialogue or specific characters and more in the sense of writing out an event or sequence of events to convey information to the reader.
Here, your aim is to persuade the reader of your point of view on a certain subject.
In this style of essay, you’ll describe a subject, such a place or an event, in much more detail.
Your objective is to provide evidence that supports your position on a subject in this essay, which is typically contentious.
With this kind of essay, your goal is to instruct the reader on how to carry out a particular procedure, frequently by providing a step-by-step guide or anything comparable.
Compare and Contrast Essay
The ultimate objective is to identify parallels and contrasts between any two particular themes. You may have already done this in school with two distinct books or characters.
The Three Major Stages of Essay Writing:
Many students believe that the only stage of writing an essay is getting all of your ideas down on paper and submitting your work. However, this is not entirely correct.
Writing an essay consists of three major stages, each with its own purpose. Of course, the most important part is writing the essay, but the other two stages are equally important.
So, what exactly are these three essay writing stages? They are as follows:
It is critical to plan the content and structure of your essay before writing a single word. If you were not assigned a topic, the first thing you should do is choose one. Following that, you should conduct research on the topic and create a detailed outline based on your findings. The preparation stage will make writing your essay much easier because you should already have the skeleton of your essay with your outline and research.
The writing stage takes the most time. At this stage, you will outline your essay and write down all of your thoughts and ideas. Throughout the introduction, body, and conclusion, you’ll work on developing and fleshing out your ideas (more on these soon).
Finally, you’ll go over your essay and look for a few errors. First, you’ll examine whether your essay is cohesive, whether all of your points make sense and are relevant to your topic, and whether your facts are cited and supported. You can also check for typos, grammatical and punctuation errors, and formatting mistakes.
The Essay of Five Paragraphs:
We mentioned earlier that essay writing follows a specific structure, and the five-paragraph essay is the most commonly used structure in academic or college essays.
The five-paragraph essay is divided into three body paragraphs and one closing paragraph. However, this does not always imply that an essay is written in five paragraphs, but rather that this structure can be applied loosely and the three body paragraphs may become three sections instead.
Let’s look at each section and what it entails in more detail.
The purpose of your introduction paragraph, as the name suggests, is to introduce your idea. A good introduction starts with a “grip,” something that catches your reader’s attention and entices them to read more.
A thesis statement is another important component of an introduction, which is usually found near the end of the introduction. Your thesis statement should be a phrase that explains your argument, position, or central idea for the essay.
In your introduction, you can also include a brief summary of what to expect, such as bringing up key points that you plan to expand on later in the body paragraphs.
This is where the majority of your essay will take place. The body paragraphs are where you expand on your ideas and address all of the points related to your main topic.
In general, you should have three body paragraphs, or sections, with each one addressing a different point. Consider it as bringing up evidence. Each paragraph is a different piece of evidence, and when the three pieces are combined, they provide excellent support for your main point — your thesis statement.
Having said that, each body paragraph should be connected in some way so that the essay flows. The points should be distinct, but they should also be related to one another and, most importantly, to your thesis statement. Each body paragraph serves to advance your point, so keep this in mind as you write your essay to avoid veering off-topic.
Many students are unsure of how to write an essay conclusion and regard it as an afterthought, but this section is just as important as the rest of your work.In your conclusion, you should not present any new ideas, but rather summarise your main points and demonstrate how they support your thesis statement.In structure and content, the conclusion is similar to the introduction, but instead of introducing your essay, it should wrap up the main points and present them to the reader as a single closed argument.
How to Write an Essay
Now that you have a better understanding of an essay’s structure and all of the components that comprise it, you may be wondering what the various steps are to actually writing an essay are.
Don’t worry, we’ve got your back. Instead of going in blind, use these stages to write your essay from beginning to end.
Examine Your Assignment
When writing an essay for an assignment, the first crucial step is to ensure that you have thoroughly read and comprehended the project. You want to make sure you know what style of essay is requested, that you comprehend the topic, and that you follow any formatting or structural guidelines. You don’t want to lose points just because you didn’t read the assignment thoroughly.
Analyze Your Subject
Once you’ve grasped your assignment, it’s time to conduct some research. In this step, you should begin looking at various sources to acquire ideas on what points to bring up throughout your essay.
Search the internet or go to the library to gather as many resources as possible. You don’t have to use them all, but it’s a good idea to start with a bunch and then limit down your sources as you get more certain of the path of your essay.
Following research, comes brainstorming. There are numerous approaches to entering the brainstorming process.
Here are a few examples:• Consider what you discovered during your study that piqued your attention the most.
• Make a list of all your ideas, even if they aren’t fully formed.
• Make word clouds or maps for comparable terms or concepts that arise so that you can group them together based on their similarities.
• Before organising your thoughts, try freewriting to get them all out.
Make a ThesisThis is frequently the most difficult aspect of the process because you want to construct a powerful thesis that you will develop throughout the essay. As a result, you should choose a thesis statement that is wide enough that you will have plenty to say about it, but not so broad that you will be unable to be exact.
Create an OutlineThe next stage is to create an outline based on your research, brainstorming sessions, and thesis statement.
Put your thesis statement at the beginning of the outline and begin building the fundamental skeleton of how you want your essay to look.
Using subject sentences is an excellent method to approach an essay. A topic sentence functions similarly to a mini-thesis statement and is typically the opening sentence of a new paragraph. This sentence introduces the key idea that will be discussed in more detail later in the paragraph.
When it comes time to sit down and write, you’ll already have a great beginning point if you develop an outline with the topic sentences for your body paragraphs and then a few points about what you want to talk about. This drives to the next step.
Make a First DraftThe initial draught of your essay does not need to be perfect, but it does need to get everything on the page so that you can write a second draught or review it later.
Every writer’s method is unique. Some students choose to write their essays in the traditional order of introduction, body, and conclusion, whilst others prefer to begin with the “meat” of the essay and handle the body first, then fill in the other sections.
Check that your essay fits your outline, that everything is related to your thesis statement, and that your ideas are supported by the research you conducted.
Proofread, edit, and revise
Although the editing process is one of the three major stages of writing an essay, many students skip it because they believe their work is finished once the initial draught is completed.
Proofreading, editing, and revising your essay, on the other hand, can mean the difference between a B and an A.
After you’ve finished the first draught, try to lay it aside for a few hours, if not a day or two, and then return to it with fresh eyes to examine it. You may discover errors or contradictions that you missed, as well as better methods to construct your arguments.
Append the Finishing Touches
Finally, make certain that your essay has all of the needed information. Examine your assignment once more to ensure that all of the criteria, such as formatting guidelines, citations, quotations, and so on, are met.
Examine the sequence of your paragraphs to ensure that everything makes sense, flows smoothly, and is written in the same manner.
After you’ve double-checked everything and added the finishing touches, go through your essay one more time to make sure it’s exactly how you want it before turning it in.
Reading your essay aloud is a fantastic approach to accomplish this since you’ll be able to hear any errors or inconsistencies.
Essay Writing Ideas
You should be able to write an excellent essay if you follow the steps outlined above. Still, there are a few other helpful hints we’d recommend to make the essay-writing process go as smoothly as possible.
Begin your essay as soon as possible
For a reason, this is the first tip. It is one of the most crucial aspects of writing a good essay. If you begin it the night before, you will not have enough time to research, brainstorm, and outline — and you will most certainly not have enough time to review.
Don’t try to finish it in one sitting
It’s fine if you have to take breaks or write it over several days. It is preferable to write it in multiple sittings so that you have a fresh mind each time and can focus.
Keep the essay question in mind at all times
If you’ve been given an assignment question, keep it handy while writing your essay to ensure you’re always working to answer it.
Transitions between paragraphs should be used
Make clear transitions between paragraphs to improve the readability of your essay. This entails attempting to connect the end of one paragraph to the beginning of the next so that the shift does not appear random.
Integrate your research with care
Citations or quotes from your research materials should be included to support your thesis and main points. This demonstrates that you conducted research and that your thesis is supported by it.
Aiming To finish
Writing an essay does not have to be a difficult task if you know how to approach it. You will have a better understanding of how to write an essay after using our essay writing steps and tips, which you will be able to apply to your next assignment. After a few repetitions, it will become more natural to you, and the essay writing process will become faster and easier.
If you still require assistance with your essay, our expert advisors are available to assist with writing skills as needed.