Get Your Essay Structure Straight to Ensure a Proper Flow to the Writing
Essay structure is in fact, the spine of your essay, and if you fail to get this straight, the quality of your essay can suffer. The structure adds cohesion and logical flow to the writing. Adhering to the basic structure of the essay is an expectation of essay writing assignments and you need to be aware of the basics that apply here. Let us take a closer look at the elements in the essay structure in the order of its appearance.
Importance of Essay Structure
When teachers mark essays, one of the most common mistakes they detect is the haphazardness of presenting information. Sometimes the same information is repeated in a number of places in the body. Some other students make the mistake of introducing information that is outside the key points being discussed within the scope of the essay. If you take a subject, there will be many points but depending on your essay length, you will need to select the key points and state them in your introduction. Then, the body paragraphs are dedicated to each of these points that you selected. Do not make the mistake of presenting information that you did not select to include in the essay, although they may be relevant. A proper structure helps present information in a logical and organized manner.
Elements of Essay Structure
There are a number of elements in an essay which comes together to form the proper essay structure. Here are some of the critical elements of the essay structure which you need to know when learning how to write an essay.
- Essay title is the first part of your essay structure. This should be concise, reflective of your essay and hint at your thesis. Depending on the essay type, the title may change. A controversial essay can have a controversial title. An expository essay, on the other hand, will have an informative title. The structural rules applicable for title include having the first word and principle words in capital. No period appears at the end of a title, although question marks and exclamation marks are permitted. The title should be centralized, followed by double spaces.
- Introduction – This is the first paragraph of the essay and will introduce the key aspect of the essay. Start with an introductory line which needs to be interesting and follow it with a brief outline of your topic. The last line in this paragraph is generally the thesis statement.
- Body Paragraphs – The body of the essay accounts for the major part of the essay. Structuring the paragraphs properly in the body of the essay adds to cohesion and logical flow of your writing. The body is where you discuss all the key points that are to be used in proving or establishing your thesis statement. Each body paragraphs should open with a topic sentence. Then the rest of the paragraph discusses at length, the point being cited. Evidence such as examples, data, testimonies and quotes can be used in the latter part of the paragraph to support the arguments being made or central point being presented. The paragraph should end with a leading sentence to the next paragraph or a transitional line. An example of a transition line can be “The next section will explore aspects of sample selection, which is another key factor in a successful research study”.
- The conclusion – This is where you summarizes the writing and bring the writing to an end. A conclusion is not a place to repeat the same text that appears in the body or introduction. It is your chance to reiterate and reestablish your points and arguments and tell the reader you final verdict on the subject. In the case of some essays as expository essays, you do not provide your own opinions. Then, you should conclude by stating the most relevant and important of the information that pertains to the topic. A cardinal rule to note is that no new ideas are introduced at this juncture.
Following this structure can help you keep unwanted and irrelevant information coming in to the essay, at various points, and distracting the reader from the main flow of the essay. Remember, once you learn the basics of essay writing, the whole process becomes more manageable and hopefully more enjoyable.