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Elements of an Effective Essay

Elements of an Effective Essay

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Published by: deepay on May 13, 2009
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06/15/2009

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Elements of an Effective EssayHook Line
 —Get your readers' attention, fast! Here is where your reader forms his/her first perceptionsabout you, so try to use a hook line that is interesting and displays originality and thought. Keep it veryshort, though, because you will want to quickly move into your essay.
Thesis
 —Make sure the thesis of your essay appears in the first paragraph of your essay, preferably thefirst two or three sentences. This will let your reader know immediately what you will be discussingand mentally prepares him/her for the rest of the essay.
0rganization
 —It is important that you organize your essay and the information in a clear readableformat. Make sure your essay has a strong thesis and introductory paragraph, develops main supporting points, and has a good conclusion. Another important part of organization is the use of appropriatetopic sentences. All the topic sentences should directly relate to your thesis and, of course, support it.By making your topic sentences relate to your thesis, and then making sure your supporting sentencesrelate to your topic sentence, you can ensure that every sentence relates to and supports your thesisstatement.
Clear Transitions
 —Make sure that between your introductory paragraph and the body of your essayas well as between the other paragraphs there are clear and smooth transitions. You want your essay to“flow” smoothly from one point to the other. Also use transition words within paragraphs andsentences to add information, to emphasize a point proven, to show exceptions, make comparisons, todemonstrate the passage of time, to demonstrate sequential order, to give examples, to emphasizeinformation, and to conclude. Use of good transitions will make your essay more readable for your audience.
Clear topic sentences
 —Clear topic sentences for each paragraph in your body is an important aspectof essay writing. It provides guidance to the reader through organizing and stating the information of your essay. It is also important that, when taken together, the topic sentences of your paragraphscontribute to proving your thesis.
Good Supporting Evidence
 —Be sure that all evidence or examples are directly related to your topicsentences and therefore your thesis. Do not use convoluted examples to try to make your essay seemmore intellectual—it will not. Use appropriate examples, pulling from what you know from your research or reading and your own experiences. Try to introduce evidence in three steps—introduce theevidence, provide the evidence, and then explain how the evidence supports the topic sentence.
Proving Your Thesis
 —Think about those supporting points of your thesis very carefully—you wantthem to fully support your thesis. If the reader feels that your essay has gone off-topic, has notaddressed the prompt question directly, or did not accomplish what you set off to accomplish in your introduction, it will hurt your essay once you come to the conclusion. This could be very damaging toyour essay since this will be the last impression your reader has of your essay.
Conclusion
 — Make sure you finish your essay with a concluding paragraph. This shouldn't be asummary, but more of just a restatement of the thesis, a closing thought or a quick explanation of howthe thesis has been proven. Do not begin your conclusion with, “In conclusion,” and do not introduceany new idea in the conclusion. You want to leave your reader with the feeling that all that needs to besaid has been said.

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