Is My Essay Good Enough?
Table of Contents
Writing Your Essay
How do we know when our writing is good enough? Afterward, we get feedback on how an essay should look like and how we should approach writing it, but there is never much in the way of support for people who were hoping to see how they can improve their writing. I was normally given help in writing my essay to the standards required, but I don’t remember being given any help to develop beyond that. There is very little help for people who want to try and develop their writing as writing, rather than simply as a way of presenting information that is being absorbed as part of the class in question. There can be a number of pitfalls in writing, and it can be difficult to find good resources to help with them, particularly since there are so many different types of essays. All in all, writing help is something which can be found, but it can be difficult to know exactly what to look for.
What Are the Main Features of an Essay as a Type of Writing?
All academic papers feature the same three sections:
- Body (normally three to five body paragraphs)
What goes into those sections (and particularly into the body) differs according to what type of essay people are writing, of course, but those are the basics. The introduction and the conclusion are self-explanatory – they introduce and conclude the paper. But they also contain the thesis statement for the overall essay, and either introduce the topic or bring everything together in one single final argument, as the case may be.
The body is where things become substantially different depending on what type of paper you are writing. Mainly, each body paragraph takes one single argument and expands on it to a greater or lesser extent. For some types of academic writing, all of the body paragraphs specifically adhere to the argument which is being made by the writer. In others, particularly in argumentative or compare and contrast essays, the body paragraphs are split into paragraphs that agree, and paragraphs that don’t.
The basic components of an essay is of prime importance, as this is how you will let people know what kind of writing to expect. The composition also allows you to guide the reader through the paper with a minimum of difficulty.
The separate elements of an essay are very important for making sure that everything is included. A thesis statement, the requisite number of body paragraphs, and the correct introduction and conclusion are all necessary for a paper to stand on its own.
Most academic papers require highly formal language but some (such as narrative essays) can call for informal language. Knowing what language to use and when will help your readers to identify the type of paper they are reading, and will also show that you know what you are doing.
Formatting your paper properly is as important as writing it properly – it shows people that the essay has a real point to make, and helps them to read through it in such a way that they will come to your side by the end.
Tips for Writing a Good Essay
- Do your research – an essay will never be good if it isn’t well researched. Make sure to look into every argument properly and thoroughly, so that you can argue it properly when you write about it. The research will let you present your case more effectively.
- Use the correct language – most academic papers use formal language, but there are some which use informal language, and it is important to know which is which. For instance, an argumentative paper presented with informal language will not be taken seriously, no matter what the arguments used in it.
- Remember to have a solid thesis statement – the thesis statement is the essence of your argument, distilled into one or two sentences. It needs to be as strong as possible since every single argument will relate back to it in some form.
- Remember proper essay formatting – each body paragraph needs to have a solid topic sentence, which gives an account of what the paragraph will be about, and a concluding sentence, to guide the reader into the next paragraph. This keeps the writing cohesive.
Mistakes to Avoid
The major mistake many people make when writing is the research. They either research too much or not enough. If they research too much, then they run the risk of ending up with far too much information and becoming paralyzed by it; but if they don’t do enough, then it can be difficult to fill up an essay and make proper arguments.
Many students don’t format the paper properly – the point of an essay is to persuade someone to your point of view, and the easiest way to do this through writing is to create a paper that flows coherently. Formatting your paper so that it flows neatly from one argument to the next is the way to make a good essay.
The thesis statement is one of the most important parts of an essay since it is the entire argument of a piece distilled down. It is the first indication of an argument that anybody reading the paper will see. Thus, it needs to be strong enough to withstand all kinds of scrutiny. The thesis statement needs to be referenced throughout the writing, including in the conclusion, so it must relate to all of the information being discussed.
Checklist to Ensure that Your Essay Is Good Enough
- Check your thesis statement.
- Is the thesis statement presented everywhere it needs to be? It should appear in both the introduction and the conclusion.
- Check that all your research and arguments fit in with the thesis – if not, then either change the statement or change the argument.
- Does your writing style fit with the type of essay you have written?
- Check that your formatting allows for your paper to transition smoothly from one point to the next and that it forms a single overarching, coherent argument.
This article focused on the ways in which you can see if your essay is good enough, since, while there is a lot of help in the initial writing stage, that help tends to vanish once people actively seek to improve. It covered checklists and mistakes for people who wanted to see how to avoid making simple errors, as well as talking about the main features of an essay and what should be included in one. If you need help writing your own paper, get in touch now, and we will do our best to give as much help as we can.