Sunday, 6 September 2015

Structure Suggestion For a 1,000+ Word Essay

Tasked to write a 1,000-word essay? If you've written one before, you've probably realized that working with a definite structure is an excellent way to streamline your work process, allowing you to finish your essays in an efficient manner.

We love essays that are tightly-structured for one reason: they make the work of writing easier. Instead of spending hours on trying different stuff out, you can just fit your notes into your paragraph arrangements and be done.

My favorite structure guideline for 1,000-word essays (or others near that in length) goes like this:

1. Introduction

2. Background

3. Explain point 1 (against the main thesis)

4. Refute it

5. Explain point 2 (against the main thesis)

6. Refute it

7. Provide an alternative view that supports the main thesis

8. Provide evidence (create a separate paragraph for each one)

9. Conclusion

Both the Introduction and the Conclusion should be self-explanatory, as they are present in almost any essay you do. The Background is intended to provide a place to give an overview of the subject - a brief history, the different points of view regarding it and why it should matter.

Many students skip doing steps 3 to 6, which I believe is a mistake. The best way to put an argument forward is to acknowledge the opposing views and refute them, even before detailing your own.

This is just a suggested format, by the way. You can make your own or borrow one from your essay writing software, if you have a structure in mind that you are more comfortable with. The important thing is to map out how you will present the essay before writing, so that you save on what would otherwise be wasted time.

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