5 Vital Essay Writing Rules
Writing an essay is an important skill for anyone who is involved in academics. Whether you are still in high school or you have moved onto college, you will need to write essays in almost every class. Once you know the five vital essay rules, you should be able to write an essay with ease. The essay rules cross all academic areas and they can be applied to all of the different formatting styles, too.
Rule #1: Create a Captivating Introduction
You will be judged by the quality of your introduction. The introduction needs to have two important ingredients: the hook and the thesis. When you craft your hook, it needs to be intelligent and clever so that your readers want to continue reading. The thesis needs to be narrowly focused, so you can address the argument in the length of the essay.
Rule #2: Write Focused Body Paragraphs
Each body paragraph needs to be focused on the thesis statement. The topic sentences need to refer back to the thesis, so the reader knows what you are trying to prove. Each body paragraph needs to be like a “sub-thesis” trying to prove a small part of the thesis.
Rule #3: Have High-Quality Examples
The body paragraphs not only need strong and focused topic sentences, but they need examples that prove the thesis. These examples need to be backed by facts and many teachers and professors will want you to record your sources, too.
Rule #4: Include a Purposeful Conclusion
The end of the essay requires a conclusion that does one of a few things. The first is that the conclusion can provide a call to action. A conclusion can also simply wrap up the main idea of the essay. Finally, a conclusion can leave the read with a thought to ponder.
Rule #5: Add Your Voice
While essays should not be full of slang and conversational language, it is important to include your own voice. Your ideas and words are what make essays more than just a collection of facts. Essays do have a strict purpose to persuade, inform, or entertain, and you will need to modify your voice based on the purpose you choose. Your personality can shine in the hook and conclusion, but you can also include your voice in transitions, sentence structure, and paragraph length.
It is important to remember that all essays are written to be read, so keep your audience in mind and write an essay that will be interesting to read.
The essay should be written in English and be NO MORE than 1500 words long, excluding references. You must provide a word count on the entry form.
It should be word-processed preferably using Microsoft Word, using double line spacing, with each page numbered, and with the essay title on the top of each page. The essay should NOT be printed double-sided, so there should be typing on just one side of each page.
Do not include any pictures or other illustrations.
The pupils name and the name of the school should NOT be on the essay cover page or anywhere in the essay. This means that the essays can be judged anonymously. Of course, the pupils name and the name of the school should be provided on the entry form.
References - books, articles or online sources that are cited should be listed at the end of the essay. Mark the place in the text by a superscript number that refers to the reference list. For example, In the text....Rosalind Franklins work was very important10.... In the reference list, in numerical order...
10. Bloggs J. (2001) Famous Female Scientists. London: UCL Press
Quotations should also be acknowledged in the references.
The essay should be an original piece of work. It should be written in the pupils own words and not copied from any books, articles, or from the internet.