What is an Essay?

Home/What is an Essay?
What is an Essay? 2014-03-06T17:20:33+00:00

What is an Essay?

First of all, it is good to define what writing an academic essay means before we tackle the tips on writing a good essay. By definition, Writing an academic essay is the act of presenting a coherent set of ideas into an argument. In other words, ideas about a topic are determined and presented in a logical manner to answer the subject questions.  Essays are essentially linear presentation of ideas; rather they introduce each idea at a time. Thus, they need to present ideas in the order that makes sense both to the reader and the writer as well. An essay that has ideas jumbled all over the paper becomes difficult to understand despite the writer presenting well informed points. Despite the number of paragraphs that a writer advances, all essays contain the following major elements; the introduction, the thesis, body paragraphs, and the conclusion.

When writing an academic essay, the inclusion of an introduction acquaints the reader with the topic of discussion. The main goal here is to capture the reader’s attention and create a yearning to read the essay. Indeed, a writer needs to have an interesting, engaging and an original introduction. For instance, a writer could give an example of a startling example or use statistics related to the topic. Additionally, they could tell a story, use a related quotation or ask appointed question. Additionally, the introduction should allow readers to get their bearings of the paper. Having read the introduction, many readers will be able to tell what would be the authors topic and the point being advanced in the essay. Therefore, authors indicate the point of their topic in a thesis. A thesis can either be stated or implied. Regardless of the form, it should clearly convey the point which needs to be stated early in the essay. In a matter of summary, the introduction of academically written essays must tell the reader what the essay is all about. In other words, we say that a writer tells, in the introduction,  what he or she will tell in the essay (the body of the essay)

The body paragraphs in writing academic essays, develop and prove the thesis. Each body paragraph needs to make a single point which develops and supports the thesis. Body paragraphs need to develop topic sentences on which they are built; all other sentences support and develop this topic sentence. Good body paragraphs are descriptive while giving vivid examples. Each body paragraph needs to be unified independently, make sense by itself and stand alone. However the author is free to connect them well and ensure they relate.

The conclusion brings the academic essay to satisfying close. No new points should be advanced in writing the conclusion. Additionally, conclusions should not be lengthy and with excessive summaries, rather they need to be thoughtful and reflective. Conclusions mainly indicate the last impression the author intends to leave his readers with. In other words, writers use the conclusion part of academic essays, to tell readers what they told them in the body.