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Essay writing is a major concept practiced in high schools, colleges and universities, regardless of the course that one is undertaking. Unlike creative writing, which can take any format, it is worth noting that essay writing has a method that has to be followed, especially for academic reasons. This paper explores the method of writing a good essay, with special focus on the format and main ideas that have to be considered during this type of writing.
Fundamentals to writing a good essay
While most people know that essays usually have an introduction, body, and conclusion, less emphasis is put on balancing the three components in actual writing. Oftentimes, most experts recommend that introduction, body, and conclusion should represent 10%, 80%, and 10% respectively (Helpsheet 2).
Essays, which do not adhere to this rule, are likely to score low marks, since it is considered as the basic structure of any academic essay. Secondly, the introduction of an essay depends on the research questions or the topic of research being considered. In general, the topic gives direction on how ideas are organized in the essay, and may take varied approaches. At this point, one may choose to turn the research topic into a question, as a way of introducing the essay (Langley 3).
Additionally, a good essay narrows its scope to limited issues, since not everything can be covered in a single essay. In other words, it is important to state what to be covered, areas under consideration, and possible comparisons, in order to give the reader a clear picture of the content of the essay.
Importantly, this method allows the writer to draw information from different disciplines, as a way of collecting enough materials to educate the reader, rather than reproducing other people’s ideas (Helpsheet 3). This also makes the essay authentic and interesting to read, as one’s view of the topic is widened through different ideas.
In this line of thought, excellent essays are neither too general nor too specific. When the method is too general, it becomes hard for one to plan in terms of how to start, the content, and the final direction of the essay. On the other hand, too specific essays may lack enough materials, thus remaining shallow and boring to the reader. For this reason, a good essay balances the scope of the research with the reader in mind.
Besides having focused research questions and a plan of the essay, it is important for the writer to select a topic, which captures the entire area of study. This is to say that, the reader should be eager to know the content of the essay as depicted by the title. A good title can be in form of a question, a statement, or a combination of the two.
Notably, there has to be a direct link between the title of research and the content of the essay. Another important component of a good essay is a thesis statement, which states the position taken by the writer. This gives direction to the reader throughout the essay, as it forms the basis of all arguments presented. A thesis can also be a point of view taken by different authors on a given topic of research.
Above all, a good essay has a conclusion, which summarizes the ideas discussed, thus giving it a smooth flow that allows easy understanding. The three elements ensure the transition of ideas as the reader is able to tell the direction of the essay.
Helpsheet. Essay Writing Basics. The University of Melbourne, 2010. Web.
Langley, Lester. The Basics of Good Writing. SUNY Rockland Community College, 2006. Web.