Six Basic Rules for Writing a Short Essay
It is not unusual for students to be given short essay assignments by their tutors. In most cases, these essays are made up of just five paragraphs. Students can be given essay assignments for virtually every class, whether it is an arts, history, math, or science class. An essay of this type should set out a claim, concept or idea, and these should be supported with credible evidence.
There must be a logical structure or pattern to a short essay. If you adhere to the simple guidelines below, you should succeed in writing a good essay. Our six essential rules are:
- The five paragraphs in your short essay should comprise of an introductory paragraph, a few (three) body paragraphs, and a concluding paragraph. The very first paragraph of your essay is the introduction. The three body paragraphs should follow this, and lastly, there will be the concluding paragraph. This format is the accepted standard in academic circles.
- There are certain goals that an introductory paragraph should aim to achieve. The most notable of these is the need to make your readers interested in your work, tell them what your paper will discuss, and provide a thesis statement. Begin with an irresistible sentence – rather than a tedious one that will put readers off from the start. The thesis statement is usually the last or final sentence in an introductory paragraph.
- The body part of a short essay is usually comprised of three paragraphs. Each of these should cover a key point with supporting evidence that lends credibility to your thesis statement. The three main ideas in these paragraphs should be independent of one another, but will have to be tied together to demonstrate the special merits of each one. This can be achieved by using transitions when moving from paragraph to paragraph.
- The conclusion is the final (and fifth) paragraph. This should summarize the main points from your essay’s body. It lets the reader know how the provided evidence supports the main points or thesis statement. This is the final part of your essay and the one that readers will remember most. So do your best to ensure it counts!
- Make sure there is a logical flow to your writing. Ideas should flow from one to another seamlessly. The reader should not have to stop during any part of your essay and wonder if they have understood what they read. It helps to ask another person to read your work and then say whether they understood it. If they did not, you will have to add some clarity.
- Lastly, your work will need to be proofread and edited. Do not skim over this stage because it is as critical as any other part. A lot of good essays fail because they are not edited or they are badly edited.