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How to Structure an English Essay

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❶There are various types of academic essays including expository, descriptive, argumentative and narrative. Though more advanced academic papers are a category all their own, the basic high school or college essay has the following standardized, five paragraph structure:.

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You may have noticed that, though the above paragraph aligns pretty closely with the provided outline, there is one large exception: These words are example of a transitional phrase — others include "furthermore," "moreover," but also "by contrast" and "on the other hand" — and are the hallmark of good writing.

Transitional phrases are useful for showing the reader where one section ends and another begins. It may be helpful to see them as the written equivalent of the kinds of spoken cues used in formal speeches that signal the end of one set of ideas and the beginning of another.

In essence, they lead the reader from one section of the paragraph of another. Hopefully this example not only provides another example of an effective body paragraph but also illustrates how transitional phrases can be used to distinguish between them. Although the conclusion paragraph comes at the end of your essay it should not be seen as an afterthought.

As the final paragraph is represents your last chance to make your case and, as such, should follow an extremely rigid format. One way to think of the conclusion is, paradoxically, as a second introduction because it does in fact contain many of the same features. While it does not need to be too long — four well-crafted sentence should be enough — it can make or break and essay.

Effective conclusions open with a concluding transition "in conclusion," "in the end," etc. After that you should immediately provide a restatement of your thesis statement. This should be the fourth or fifth time you have repeated your thesis so while you should use a variety of word choice in the body paragraphs it is a acceptable idea to use some but not all of the original language you used in the introduction.

This echoing effect not only reinforces your argument but also ties it nicely to the second key element of the conclusion: Having done all of that, the final element — and final sentence in your essay — should be a "global statement" or "call to action" that gives the reader signals that the discussion has come to an end.

The conclusion paragraph can be a difficult paragraph to write effectively but, as it is your last chance to convince or otherwise impress the reader, it is worth investing some time in. Take this opportunity to restate your thesis with confidence; if you present your argument as "obvious" then the reader might just do the same. Although you can reuse the same key words in the conclusion as you did in the introduction, try not to copy whole phrases word for word. Instead, try to use this last paragraph to really show your skills as a writer by being as artful in your rephrasing as possible.

Although it may seem like a waste of time — especially during exams where time is tight — it is almost always better to brainstorm a bit before beginning your essay. This should enable you to find the best supporting ideas — rather than simply the first ones that come to mind — and position them in your essay accordingly. Your best supporting idea — the one that most strongly makes your case and, simultaneously, about which you have the most knowledge — should go first.

Even the best-written essays can fail because of ineffectively placed arguments. Sentences and vocabulary of varying complexity are one of the hallmarks of effective writing.

When you are writing, try to avoid using the same words and phrases over and over again. If you are asked about "money," you could try "wealth" or "riches. In the end, though, remember that good writing does not happen by accident. Often the hardest part is knowing how to finish the conclusion.

The final statement needs to explain the connection of your argument to the module and what YOU have taken away from the study of the module. To give you a sense of what this means, consider these Module A concluding statements:. The statement it makes only partially relates to the module, and it is not original — many students will write something similar. Narratives that Shaped the World. This second statement is what your markers are looking for! The best way to get good at writing introductions and conclusions is to practice writing them to a variety of questions.

If you are still struggling with how to write your conclusion, take the time to read through our detailed blog post Essay Writing Part 5: How to Write a Conclusion. You will have to sit at least 6 essays in Year 12! It is imperative that you keep these aims in mind at all times when you are writing your essay. Matrix students are taught how to address these criteria in their responses. You must ensure that you demonstrate a skilful ability to answer each of the seven criteria above.

This is especially true in the HSC, where the questions are becoming more focused and thematically specific to weed out students who engage in this practice. Instead, you want to study your texts in a holistic manner that allows you to respond to a wide range of questions. You sit in the classroom and wait for your teacher to say: One of the most difficult parts of dealing with exams is responding to what the questions ask of you.

But there are some strategies to take the sting out of this. This question is drawing on the language of the module.

The relevant key phrases from the module are:. That could look like this:. Practise essay writing with Matrix English Skills Course during the school holidays. Learn how to structure and write an essay step-by-step with HSC experts. Learn more about Year 11 English Skills Course. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Matrix Education and www. How to Read and Analyse Texts 2. How to Research Your Texts 3.

How to Prepare for Assessments 5. How to Plan an Essay 6. How To Write An Essay 7. How to Edit Your Essay 8. Using the previous example, the writer would describe the downside of uniforms -- children not being able to express their independence, for example. Research is also important and is present in most essays. Each body paragraph should contain specific details from research that support their arguments or points.

Research can come in the form of paraphrasing or quoting. The conclusion wraps up the essay and reiterates the thesis, as well as the main issues explored in the body paragraphs. Nothing new is usually introduced in the conclusion, and often the reader is left with a sense of a well-rounded argument or idea. It is important that the reader is not left with any questions, or is pointed in the direction of getting possible questions answered.

For example, if the reader wanted to know more about school uniforms, the writer could point them to further research or proof. Difference Between a Research and a Persuasive Essay.

How to Structure an Essay:

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There are various types of academic essays including expository, descriptive, argumentative and narrative. While every type of essay is unique and calls for different content, length and style, a majority of essays have a similar structure. The five-paragraph essay is the basic approach to essay structure.

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Because essays are essentially linear—they offer one idea at a time—they must present their ideas in the order that makes most sense to a reader. Successfully structuring an essay means attending to a reader's logic. The focus of such an essay predicts its structure.

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A basic essay structure contains an introduction, a body and a conclusion. Generally, each section will be a separate paragraph. The body can have three or more paragraphs. The final Essay type is the commentary Essay. These Essays would normally focus on texts. Your introduction would therefore introduce the text(s). You would then follow this with a series of comments that analyse and evaluate the text(s) given. You may be required to compare and contrast the texts.

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Learn english essay structure with free interactive flashcards. Choose from different sets of english essay structure flashcards on Quizlet. Related discussions on The Student Room. english essay structure help ASAP» AQA English Literature Paper 1B Section A Essay structure» English Lit AO1 Essay Structure».