A Step-by-Step Guide for Writing good Essays

Writing a good essay is easy. Many students freak out about the prospect of having to create one, but in reality, following a few basic and simple steps can lead to the creation of a shiny, perfect new essay that the professor will love.

Start with this basic outline—in fact, the first step is an outline.

Outline

At the top of a piece of paper, write “Introduction.” You’ll come back to this later. This will some general remarks about your topic, or an interesting story that piques the reader’s attention. Below that, write out your thesis (we’ll go over this in a moment). Then, leave some space where you can write in how you’ll support your thesis, and put a space for your conclusion. You’ll build your essay up from this skeleton, without having to stare at a blank piece of paper and wonder how to begin.

Thesis

Your thesis statement is the basic idea of your paper. It’s what you’re setting out to show, or prove, or say. It can be as basic as a simple sentence, like “essay writing is easy,” or, if you’re a doctoral student, it can be several paragraphs of complicated text. Either way, it doesn’t have to prove anything. It’s just a statement.

Supporting Evidence

This is where you prove your thesis. Hopefully, you have your research sitting in front of you, and you can easily reach it for when you need it. When you organize your supporting evidence, make sure that you do so in a logical, cohesive way. Refer back to your thesis if you’re not sure how to include a piece of evidence from your research. If every statement refers back to your thesis in some way (though not necessarily directly), then you’ve done a good job with your supporting evidence.

Conclusion

Tie it all together in your conclusion. This is where you’ll restate some of your supporting evidence, normally at the beginning of the conclusion, and then end with more general remarks, or talk about the ramifications of your conclusion outside the scope of the essay. This means that you can make very general statements related to the thesis, that have impact on a broader understanding of the outside world as it relates to your paper.

All in all, if you follow this simple guide, your essay, rather than having to be forcibly written, can flow naturally, a result of the fact that its structure is built into it. Just keep adding more supporting evidence, and expanding your conclusion and introduction, until you reach the desired length. It’s that easy!

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