A strong essay is a well-articulated piece of writing that summarizes the context, subject, and topic in a manner that is concise and easy to understand. An academic essay needs to be accurate in presenting information by using appropriate evidence to communicate the intended idea.
An essay is a short piece of writing on a particular subject or topic. It can be presented both informally and formally depending on the nature and topic of the subject. Hence, an essay is sub-classified as formal and informal.
Formal essays are characterized by “serious tone” and “purposeful presentation.” It is written in a manner that is organized, structured, logical, and concise. It addresses a particular topic for informing and educating the target audience. It is not based upon personal perspectives or views, but rather, it presents a summary of your case study.
Informal essays are characterized by personal elements such as personal perspective, self-revelation, individual views, or experiences that are unconventional and humorous. Informal essays do not have a standardized style or structure, and the author can grace his/her own style in presenting and structuring the essay in a manner to achieve novelty or to suit the intent.
Essays are important because they play an important role in presenting literary criticism, political manifestos, arguments, personal observation of life or society, reflection of the author, and the author’s imagination.
The word essay is derived from the French infinitive essayer, which is “to try” or “to attempt.” Hence, an essay is not written with the intent to present factual reality and accurate information or story, but it is rather written with an attempt to present a relatable idea that may or may not be absolute. So, one can have the freedom to write an essay to present self-inspired or self-created ideas more comfortably without the obligation to verify or proof.
Informally, this is the very reason why essays are used as a written sample to ascertain a writers’ skill, talent, and creativity.
Today, we will discuss how to write a strong academic essay.
The goal of an academic essay is to persuade readers of a position or perspective through informed arguments with evidence and analysis.
1. Preparation: In the preparation stage, you first need to understand the assignment and choose a topic. Once you have chosen your topic, you should come up with an initial thesis. For example, “The invention of Braille helped transform blind people’s social status in the nineteenth century.” This is the main point you want to make in the essay or the position you are going to argue for. At this stage, it does not have to be perfectly phrased, but it is important to start with a clear idea of what you want to say or present to your readers. You can then start creating an outline and plan the structure for your essay. This will kick start your writing and keep you on track.
2. Writing: Every essay starts off with an introduction, as it is important to grab the readers’ interest right from the first sentence and inform them what will be covered in the essay. For example, “The invention of Braille marked a major turning point in the history of disability.” You can then give context that will help your readers to understand your argument. For example, “The writing system of raised dots, widely used by blind and visually impaired people, was developed by Louis Braille in the nineteenth-century France. Although it initially met with resistance from sighted people, Braille eventually became central to blind people’s education and autonomy.” Providing context involves providing brief background information, giving an overview of important and relevant academic work or debates on the topic, and explaining difficult terms. Next, you should present the thesis statement from before and present it right after the context telling the reader the central argument of your essay. The thesis statement is usually one or two sentences at the most, and it drives the whole essay. So, you should ensure to spend some time in writing a strong thesis statement.
You can enter the introduction section with an overview of the essay, thus sign posting your essay structure.
Moving on to the body section of the essay, which is the longest part of your essay, usually around 60-80%. Here, you should make your arguments supporting your thesis, provide evidence, and develop your ideas. It is easy to get lost in a big chunk of text; therefore, it is important to use short paragraphs to give your essay a clear structure,. Each paragraph should be centred around one argument or idea. Introduce the purpose of each paragraph using topic sentences. For example, “In France, debates about how to deal with disability led to the adoption of different strategies overtime.” A good topic sentence makes a transition from the previous paragraph and introduces and introduces the argument to made in this paragraph. After the topic sentence, present evidence by providing the reader with data, examples, or quotes. For example, “According to one historian, “Many of the teachers at the Royal Institute for Blind youth resisted learning Braille’s system because they found the tactile method of reading difficult to learn” (Bullock and Galst 1532).” After providing evidence, you should interpret and explain the evidence and show how it helps develop your overall argument.
Now, we come to the last part of your essay, which is the conclusion.
1. Summarize and tie together the points you made in the body of the essay.
2. Show the outcome of your arguments.
3. Emphasize why your argument matters.
3. Revision: After you are done writing your essay, and before you submit your work, it is important to revise and polish your writing.
4. Double-check your argument: Have you set everything you meant to say or do some points need re-structuring? Finally, ensure to check your grammar, spelling, punctuation, and formatting.
5. If you have cited sources in your paper, use a plagiarism checker to ensure everything is good to go.
The aforementioned will help scholars and readers to write and frame a strong academic essay. Follow the guidelines properly, and you can form your own academic essay without any confusion or difficulty.
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