Sooner or later, the majority of people who study and even work face the necessity to write a short essay in English on a particular subject. That is why students from different corners of the world are so much curious about how to write a good college essay and succeed in studies no matter what.
If you are one of them, you are on the right page to get the answers to all your questions concerning academic essays and their writing. Top writing tips on how to write college essays will be just what you’re looking for.
How to Write a College Essay
Essay is a prosaic work of a relatively small word amount and free composition, expressing some individual experiences or the author’s views on a specific subject or a certain problem and does not necessarily claim to define the subject itself explicitly. Michel de Montaigne is considered to be the founder of the essay genre.
This academic work type has become extremely popular in recent years. Today, the essay is offered as an assignment for multiple purposes often enough. It is one of the main components of the document package for employment admission, promotion or entering the desired educational institution. It’s the essay contest that really helps to select the best candidates from the pool.
The purpose of the essay is to develop skills such as independent creative thinking and ability to express your own thoughts in writing. And the process of writing it is very useful, because it promotes learning and improving information organizing, identifying causal relations, illustrations of the experience with all sorts of examples and reasoning of conclusions, etc.
Since both students and people who are about to get employed, may encounter the necessity to write essays for success, they need to know the ABCs of academic essay writing. Some basic signs of an essay:
1. The specific topic
In any essay it is always a particular theme. Therefore, an essay by definition cannot consider broad themes, contain multiple ideas and should reflect and develop only one idea or answer a vital question. All essays assigned are limited by a specific topic. Free essays are also widely applied, though more seldom.
2. The subjective (personal) character
Essays should be focused on clear to everyone spoken language, but should not contain cliché phrases and expressions, frivolous painting, slang or jargon at the same time. The story should be simple, but taken quite seriously.
3. Small volume
Generally, there are some certain boundaries in terms of volume for the essay. But it is recommended to write an essay of from three to seven pages of printed text. In many universities students are allowed to write essays of up to ten pages (typed text), the Harvard Business School demands essays generally in only two pages. So, that rather depends.
4. Free composition
The essay should not present absolutely non-formal framework. Simply, many of the works in the genre of the essay are not built on the laws of logic, but are subjected to a kind of random associations and can even be built on the principle of “all the way around.”
5. Casual narration
While working on an essay, the author must adhere to confidential manner of communication with the reader, avoid complex, too stringent, vague words, and be fluent in the subject, to be able to show the reader diverse views on the matter of things from the different angles, which will be the foundation of its future thoughts and conclusions.
6. The use of paradoxes or other stylistic devices (apparently it comes to formulation of the problem)
In many cases, the essay is designed to try to induce the reader wondering. Some experts even consider this condition mandatory. The starting point for reflection for the reader can become any aphorism, paradox, saying bright, able to push each other to mutually exclusive ideas (approval or disapproval), etc.
7. The internal consistency, unity of meaning
Semantic integrity is a must. This is just one of the paradoxes of the essay: wherein the free composition and presentation of the subjectivity, the issue along should have the inner sense integrity, that is, consistency of key messages and the author’s allegations, associations and harmony of arguments and consistent judgments, etc.
8. Open end
The author does not claim essay to be necessarily complete, the final point of view may be up to a reader.
The structure and essay outline
The structure of the essay is almost always determined by two requirements:
- Thoughts of the author should be presented in the form of brief abstracts
- Abstracts must be reasoned and provide arguments.
Classification of College Essays
There are so many various essay types used in educational establishments and in work place that allow checking the students’ knowledge and level of personal achievement nowadays. There are varieties of academic essays that are assigned to students on every day basis during the studying course or academic year. There are admissions, analytical, narrative, descriptive, personal, and case study essays, etc.
In terms of the content they may be:
- religious and others.
According to the literary form, essays may be divided to:
- lyrical miniatures,
- diary pages,
- letters and others.
There are also college essays that are widely known as:
- movie/book reviews,
- case study,
- analytical, etc.
Finally, all the essays are classified into the two large groups:
- personal, subjective essays, where the main element is the disclosure of the author’s personality part,
- objective essays, where personal principle is subjected to the object description, or some idea.