What are the three key elements of an essay

Often it is not necessary, or even possible, to find the exact cause of an event or to name the exact effect. So, when formulating a thesis, you can claim one of a number of causes or effects to be the primary, or main, cause or effect. As soon as you claim that one cause or one effect is more crucial than the others, you have developed a thesis.

The cause and effect essay opens with a general introduction to the topic, which then leads to a thesis that states the main cause, main effect, or various causes and effects of a condition or event. The cause and effect essay can be organized in one of the following two primary ways:. Start with the cause and then talk about the effects.

Start with the effect and then talk about the causes. For example, if your essay is on childhood obesity, you could start by talking about the effect of childhood obesity and then discuss the cause, or you could start the same essay by talking about the cause of childhood obesity and then move to the effect. Regardless of which structure you choose, be sure to explain each element of the essay completely.

Explaining complex relationships requires the full use of evidence, such as scientific studies, expert testimony, statistics, and anecdotes. Because cause and effect essays determine how phenomena are linked, they make frequent use of words and phrases that denote such linkage. See Table 4. The conclusion should wrap up the discussion and reinforce the thesis, leaving the reader with a clear understanding of the relationship that was analyzed.

Be careful of resorting to empty speculation. In writing, speculation amounts to unsubstantiated guessing. Writers are particularly prone to this trap in cause and effect arguments due to the complex nature of finding links between phenomena. Be sure to have clear evidence to support the claims that you make. Freewrite for five minutes on one of the following broad topics below. Focus on a narrower issue about that topic and its effects. Choose an event or condition that you think has an interesting cause and effect relationship. Introduce your topic in an engaging way.

End your introduction with a thesis that states the main cause, the main effect, or both. Organize your essay by starting with either the cause then effect structure, or the effect then cause structure. Within each section, you should clearly explain and support the causes and effects using a full range of evidence. If you are writing about multiple causes or multiple effects, you may choose to sequence either in order of importance. In other words, order the causes from least to most important or vice versa , or order the effects from least important to most important or vice versa.

Use the phrases of causation when trying to forge connections between various events or conditions. This will help organize your ideas and orient the reader. End your essay with a conclusion that summarizes your main points and reinforces your thesis. In week 7, you will need to submit an expository essay on one of the following topics. Consider these topics as you work through the rest of this chapter and the next. You will need to choose one topic from one of the rhetorical modes below and write a to word essay.

You will need to produce a logically organized essay with a thesis statement, well developed and logically organized paragraphs with topic sentences , and an introduction and conclusion. You need to also demonstrate appropriate use of grammar and correct spelling. Remember, your essay should not just be a story; it should demonstrate logical organization and idea development. Narrative : Choose one of the topics below and relate your ideas in a clearly organized narrative essay. Illustration : Choose one of the topics below and relate your ideas in a clearly organized illustration essay.

The media and the framing of crime Child obesity The effect of violent video games on behaviour Description : Choose one of the topics below and relate your ideas in a clearly organized description essay. Ways of boring people Methods of studying for a final exam Extreme weather Process analysis : Choose one of the topics below and relate your ideas in a clearly organized process analysis essay. How to complain effectively How to apply the Heimlich manoeuvre, or other lifesaving technique How a particular accident occurred Definition : Choose one of the topics below and relate your ideas in a clearly organized definition essay.

Right to privacy Integrity Heroism Compare and contrast : Choose one of the topics below and relate your ideas in a clearly organized compare and contrast essay. Two ways of losing weight: one healthy, one dangerous Two ways to break a bad habit An active and a passive student Cause and effect : Choose one of the topics below and relate your ideas in a clearly organized cause and effect essay.

Plagiarism and cheating in school. Give its effects. A personal, unreasonable fear or irritation. Give its causes. You need to submit this assignment to your instructor for marking. We have examined different types or modes of composing expository essays. As each essay has a different purpose, we now need to look further at how to construct paragraphs according to the purpose, audience, and tone of writing. It is important keep the big picture thesis in mind when writing, and to question whether the information supports that thesis.

As well, while thinking of how each supporting idea links back to that thesis, it is necessary to consider the purpose of the paragraphs. Should a paragraph be summary, analysis, synthesis, or evaluation to best support the thesis and essay mode? How will that purpose affect paragraph construction? The reason the writer composes the paragraph.

The individual or group whom the writer intends to address. Figure 4. This section covers how purpose, audience, and tone affect reading and writing paragraphs. The purpose is simply the reason you are writing a particular document. To entertain a packed theatre. Why write instructions to the babysitter? To inform him or her of your schedule and rules.

Why write a letter to your Member of Parliament? In academic settings, the reasons for writing fulfill four main purposes: to summarize, to analyze, to synthesize, and to evaluate. You will encounter these four purposes not only as you read for your classes but also as you read for work or pleasure. Because reading and writing work together, your writing skills will improve as you read. Eventually, your instructors will ask you to complete assignments specifically designed to meet one of the four purposes. As you will see, the purpose for writing will guide you through each part of the paper, helping you make decisions about content and style.

For now, identifying these purposes by reading paragraphs will prepare you to write individual paragraphs and to build longer assignments. We have already seen a sample of a summary paragraph in Section 3. Take a look back at the summary paragraph in that section to refresh your memory on what this type of paragraph should contain. The analysis of simple table salt, for example, would require a deconstruction of its parts—the elements sodium Na and chloride Cl.

Then, scientists would study how the two elements interact to create the compound NaCl, or sodium chloride, which is also called simple table salt. Analysis is not limited to the sciences, of course. An analysis paragraph in academic writing fulfills the same purpose. Instead of deconstructing chemical compounds, academic analysis paragraphs typically deconstruct documents.

An analysis takes apart a primary source an essay, a book, an article, etc. It communicates the main points of the document by examining individual points and identifying how they relate to one another. Notice how the analysis does not simply repeat information from the original report, but considers how the points within the report relate to one another. By doing this, the student uncovers a discrepancy between the points that are backed up by statistics and those that require additional information.

Analyzing a document involves a close examination of each of the individual parts and how they work together. Consider the electronic musical instrument aptly named the synthesizer. It looks like a simple keyboard but displays a dashboard of switches, buttons, and levers. With the flip of a few switches, a musician may combine the distinct sounds of a piano, a flute, or a guitar—or any other combination of instruments—to create a new sound. The purpose of the synthesizer is to blend together the notes from individual instruments to form new, unique notes.

The purpose of an academic synthesis is to blend individual documents into a new document. An academic synthesis paragraph considers the main points from one or more pieces of writing and links the main points together to create a new point, one not replicated in either document. Notice how the synthesis paragraphs consider each source and use information from each to create a new thesis. A good synthesis does not repeat information; the writer uses a variety of sources to create a new idea. Evaluations in everyday experiences are often not only dictated by set standards but are also influenced by opinion and prior knowledge.

The purpose of the evaluation is to determine how well the employee performs on the job. An academic evaluation communicates your opinion, and its justifications, about a document or a topic of discussion. Evaluations are influenced by your reading of the document, your prior knowledge, and your prior experience with the topic or issue. Because an evaluation incorporates your point of view and the reasons for your point of view, it typically requires more critical thinking and a combination of summary, analysis, and synthesis skills.

Thus evaluation paragraphs often follow summary, analysis, and synthesis paragraphs. Evaluating a document requires prior knowledge that is often based on additional research. These words will cue you on how to complete the assignment because you will know its exact purpose. Read the following paragraphs about four films and then identify the purpose of each paragraph.

This film could easily have been cut down to less than two hours. By the final scene, I noticed that most of my fellow moviegoers were snoozing in their seats and were barely paying attention to what was happening on screen. Although the director sticks diligently to the book, he tries too hard to cram in all the action, which is just too ambitious for such a detail-oriented story. If you want my advice, read the book and give the movie a miss.

Essay Writing 101: Developing Ideas and the Basic Elements of an Essay (Part 1)

During the opening scene, we learn that the character Laura is adopted and that she has spent the past three years desperately trying to track down her real parents. Having exhausted all the usual options—adoption agencies, online searches, family trees, and so on—she is on the verge of giving up when she meets a stranger on a bus. The chance encounter leads to a complicated chain of events that ultimately result in Laura getting her lifelong wish.

But is it really what she wants? Throughout the rest of the film, Laura discovers that sometimes the past is best left where it belongs. To create the feeling of being gripped in a vise, the director, May Lee, uses a variety of elements to gradually increase the tension. The creepy, haunting melody that subtly enhances the earlier scenes becomes ever more insistent, rising to a disturbing crescendo toward the end of the movie. The desperation of the actors, combined with the claustrophobic atmosphere and tight camera angles create a realistic firestorm, from which there is little hope of escape.

Walking out of the theatre at the end feels like staggering out of a Roman dungeon. The scene in which Campbell and his fellow prisoners assist the guards in shutting down the riot immediately strikes the viewer as unrealistic. Based on the recent reports on prison riots in both Detroit and California, it seems highly unlikely that a posse of hardened criminals would intentionally help their captors at the risk of inciting future revenge from other inmates. Instead, both news reports and psychological studies indicate that prisoners who do not actively participate in a riot will go back to their cells and avoid conflict altogether.

Examples of this lack of attention to detail occur throughout the film, making it almost unbearable to watch. Thinking about the purpose of writing a report in the workplace can help focus and structure the document. A summary should provide colleagues with a factual overview of your findings without going into too much detail.

In contrast, an evaluation should include your personal opinion, along with supporting evidence, research, or examples to back it up. Consider the expository essay you will soon have to write. Identify the most effective academic purpose for the assignment.


  • Elements of an Essay.
  • How to Cite!
  • Essay Writing Developing Ideas and the Basic Elements of an Essay (Part 1)!
  • Quick Links.

Imagine you must give a presentation to a group of executives in an office. Weeks before the big day, you spend time creating and rehearsing the presentation. You must make important, careful decisions not only about the content but also about your delivery. Will the presentation require technology to project figures and charts?

Some Ways of Thinking about Structure:

Should the presentation define important words, or will the executives already know the terms? Should you wear your suit and dress shirt? The answers to these questions will help you develop an appropriate relationship with your audience, making them more receptive to your message. Now imagine you must explain the same business concepts from your presentation to a group of high school students. Those important questions you previously answered may now require different answers.

The figures and charts may be too sophisticated, and the terms will certainly require definitions. You may even reconsider your outfit and sport a more casual look. Because the audience has shifted, your presentation and delivery will shift as well to create a new relationship with the new audience. In these two situations, the audience—the individuals who will watch and listen to the presentation—plays a role in the development of presentation. As you prepare the presentation, you visualize the audience to anticipate their expectations and reactions. What you imagine affects the information you choose to present and how you will present it.

Then, during the presentation, you meet the audience in person and discover immediately how well you perform. Although the audience for writing assignments—your readers—may not appear in person, they play an equally vital role. In fact, thinking about audience has become so common that you may not even detect the audience driven decisions. For example, you update your status on a social networking site with the awareness of who will digitally follow the post. If you want to brag about a good grade, you may write the post to please family members. Even at work, you send emails with an awareness of an unintended receiver who could intercept the message.

Consider the following paragraphs. Which one would the author send to her parents? Which one would she send to her best friend? Last Saturday, I volunteered at a local hospital. The visit was fun and rewarding. I even learned how to do cardiopulmonary resuscitation, or CPR. Unfortunately, I think caught a cold from one of the patients. This week, I will rest in bed and drink plenty of clear fluids. I hope I am well by next Saturday to volunteer again.

Example B OMG! My advisor forced me to do my community service hours at this hospital all weekend! We learned CPR but we did it on dummies, not even real peeps. And some kid sneezed on me and got me sick! I def do NOT want to miss the basketball tournament! Most likely, you matched each paragraph to its intended audience with little hesitation. When writing your own paragraphs, you must engage with your audience to build an appropriate relationship given your subject. Imagining your readers during each stage of the writing process will help you make decisions about your writing.

Ultimately, the people you visualize will affect what and how you write. While giving a speech, you may articulate an inspiring or critical message, but if you left your hair a mess and laced up mismatched shoes, your audience would not take you seriously. They may be too distracted by your appearance to listen to your words. Similarly, grammar and sentence structure serve as the appearance of a piece of writing. Polishing your work using correct grammar will impress your readers and allow them to focus on what you have to say. Because focusing on audience will enhance your writing, your process, and your finished product, you must consider the specific traits of your audience members.

Certain topics and assignments will require you to consider these factors as they relate to your audience. For other topics and assignments, these measurements may not influence your writing. Regardless, it is important to consider demographics when you begin to think about your purpose for writing. If audience members have earned a doctorate degree, for example, you may need to elevate your style and use more formal language.

Or, if audience members are still in college, you could write in a more relaxed style. If your readers have studied certain topics, they may already know some terms and concepts related to the topic. Although you cannot peer inside the brains of your readers to discover their knowledge, you can make reasonable assumptions. For instance, a nursing major would presumably know more about health-related topics than a business major would. On a sheet of paper, generate a list of characteristics under each category for each audience.

This list will help you later when you read about tone and content. Now think about your next writing assignment. Identify the purpose you may use the same purpose listed in Self — Practice Exercise 4. Create a list of characteristics under each category. Keep in mind that as your topic shifts in the writing process, your audience may also shift. Also, remember that decisions about style depend on audience, purpose, and content.

The next subsection covers how to select an appropriate tone to match the audience and purpose. A friend who tells you about her weekend may speak excitedly about a fun skiing trip. An instructor who means business may speak in a low, slow voice to emphasize her serious mood. Or, a co-worker who needs to let off some steam after a long meeting may crack a sarcastic joke. Just as speakers transmit emotion through voice, writers can transmit through writing a range of attitudes, from excited and humorous to somber and critical. These emotions create connections among the audience, the author, and the subject, ultimately building a relationship between the audience and the text.

To stimulate these connections, writers intimate their attitudes and feelings with useful devices, such as sentence structure, word choice, punctuation, and formal or informal language. Many species of plants and animals are disappearing right before our eyes.

If we do not act fast, it might be too late to save them. Human activities, including pollution, deforestation, hunting, and overpopulation, are devastating the natural environment. Without our help, many species will not survive long enough for our children to see them in the wild. Take the tiger, for example. Today, tigers occupy just 7 percent of their historical range, and many local populations are already extinct. Hunted for their beautiful pelt and other body parts, the tiger population has plummeted from , in to just a few thousand Smith, Contact your local wildlife conservation society today to find out how you can stop this terrible destruction.

Think about the assignment and purpose you selected in Self — Practice Exercise 4. Now, identify the tone you would use in the assignment. After selecting an audience and a purpose, you must choose what information will make it to the page. Content may consist of examples, statistics, facts, anecdotes, testimonies, and observations, but no matter the type, the information must be appropriate and interesting for the audience and purpose.

An essay written for grade 3 students that summarizes the legislative process, for example, would have to contain succinct and simple content. Content is also shaped by tone. Yes No 3 points Question 5 The topic sentences in the body of the essay are determined by what elements of the thesis?

The main ideas in the thesis They are not determined by the thesis The rhetorical strategy suggedted in the thesis The audience suggested in the thesis 3 points Question 6 What is the purpose of the topic sentences? As long the subpoint relates to the general idea of the essay, it is okay. Yes No 3 points Question 9 What is the most effective place for the thesis statement of the essay?

Two paragrpahs: intruduction and main idea Three paragraphs: introduction, body, conclusion On paragraph that contains the topic, main idea and concluding sentence. A good essay should be attractive to look at. It is, therefore, important to learn the outline of the 5 parts of an essay. The most important parts of the essay outline are the introduction, the body, as well as the conclusion. Without including the basic element in the essay, automatically the outline is stale.

Key Elements of a Strong Conclusion

In general, a perfect introduction should have a question, a sentence to support it, and a thesis statement. Usually, it is short and not more than five sentences. When it comes to writing the body part, it is the most essential essay part. According to the 5 parts of an essay, the body should have at least three paragraphs. Every paragraph should include at least five or seven sentences.

Apart from that, every paragraph should carry one specific key point or idea. The conclusion usually marks the completion of every essay. This is because it summarizes all the key arguments or points of the essay. It can be in either three or five sentences and do not forget that it has to be decisive. For every student, the most stressful task in school life is when doing an exam essay.

Most of the students often forget to write the 5 parts of an essay. This is definitely a very wrong approach when it comes to handling exam questions. Therefore, the first and most important step is going through the question carefully and understands what it expects from you. Those who go directly into writing always mess up. They tend to divert from the actual question. This is because they fail to take enough time to know what the question is all about. One good approach when handling the essay exam is to come up with a schedule.

For instance, you can set eight to ten minutes to formulate the key arguments. Thirty minutes can be for writing whereas five minutes is reviewing the entire essay. Develop a relevant thesis statement which can justify and provide answers to the main question. After that, proceed as you think critically about the key points you should address in the essay. Make sure that your key points align well with the thesis statement.

On the other hand, you should organize the body paragraphs into three different parts. It includes the opening statement, the supporting statement, and the closing sentence. Apart from that, make sure that you carefully review your work before submission.

Elements of Essay Writing

The topics to write about in the 5 paragraph essay are quite fun and interesting. This is because the structure on how to write is always straightforward. The first part of the essay topic includes the introduction paragraph containing the thesis statement. The next paragraph includes the body. It usually contains the major idea or argument, the supporting sentence, and the closing statement.

The following part is two body paragraphs which carry the main ideas. The final paragraph is the conclusion. It sums up all the main points and restates the thesis statement of the essay. The common topics covered in the 5 parts of an essay can be argumentative, descriptive, expository, persuasive, and many others. Once you are familiar with the 5 parts of an essay, it definitely becomes very easy to draft one.

Writing an essay can sometimes be very challenging. Irrespective of the type of essay and its purpose, most of the students often find such a task being overwhelming. Essay writing can be a wide task. However, there are various steps every student has to take to break down large tasks into more manageable sections. The following tips can be helpful to a student while drafting an essay regardless of the purpose;.

When it comes to essay writing, you can either be given a topic to write about or to choose a topic of your interest. So if you already have one, then you need to figure out the type of paper you intend to write. It can be an overall overview of the subject matter or a certain analysis. Narrowing your focus is thus significant. On the contrary, if you do not a topic, then it means you have a lot of work to do. Nevertheless, this chance gives you the benefit of selecting a subject of your own interest and relevant.

First of all, you need to understand the purpose. For instance, whether the essay type is persuasive, informative, or argumentative. After determining the purpose of the essay, conducting research on the topic you find relevant and interesting is very important. You can consider your life experiences as well as your own interest. Lastly, consider the evaluation of your own options.

Basics of Writing An Effective Essay

In case your objective is to educate, then it is good to select a subject that you are sure of. Similarly, if your objective is to persuade, then select a subject which makes you passionate about. Regardless of the goal of your essay, always ensure that the topic you choose interests you. For you to draft an outstanding essay, you need to organize all your points and ideas in a logical manner.

Take what you have in mind and put it down on paper. This enables you to clearly see a good link and connection of the ideas. Such an outline serves as a good foundation when it comes to writing an essay. You can either use a diagram or an outline to take note of every idea as you organize them accordingly. Once you have a topic, ideas, and the points in relevant groups, you must come up with a thesis statement. The key purpose of the thesis statement is to tell the readers about the main point of the essay.

An easy way to create a thesis statement is by carefully taking a look at the essay outline.

Usually, the thesis statement comprises of two main sections. The first section involves the topic of the essay. The second sections present the key point of that particular essay. Once you come up with the thesis statement, write a good introduction. It should be able to attract the attention of the readers and give the focus of the essay.