Keys to Academic Success: Argument Structure in Essay Writing


US_Navy_030918-N-4616B-016_Hull_Maintenance_Technician_Fireman_Dustin_Brant_considers_an_answerHaving done the best possible preparation for successful essay writing, it is now time to start the actual writing process. By now you should have a feasible time plan for essay composition and submission, well-organized notes, and clear ideas about what you want to write. The next step is to arrange your thoughts in a well-structured, top-ranking essay

Essays are one of the most common ways of assessment, and students are often perplexed as to the best way of structuring and sequencing an them. To begin with, you need to carefully read and understand the question. In their enthusiasm to get on with the writing, some students tend to hurriedly glance at the question. However, misunderstanding a question can lead to an off-topic essay; even if some brilliant ideas are expressed, an answer that does not fully engage with the question can result in poor marks. Therefore, students should make sure they thoroughly comprehend the question and address all its aspects.

The introduction is the first paragraph of your essay and its function is to set the scene by providing some background information. This is the place to state your intentions by providing a ‘map’ of the essay, making it easier for your examiner to follow your thoughts in the main body of your work.

Your sharp critical thinking will have helped you identify the material you need and you can now use this to write reasoned arguments. It is best to express one main idea in each paragraph, so that your essay follows a logical sequence. The controlling idea is usually positioned at the beginning of the paragraph, followed by evidence and examples to support it. Then a smooth transition to the next paragraph adds to an enjoyable reading experience.

While composing the main body of your essay it is a good idea to look at your topic from multiple points of view, so that your arguments are objective. Cohesion is also very important, and connecting words and grammatical structures can be very helpful.

When you are happy that you have effectively discussed the question, do not forget that your essay also needs a short concluding paragraph. This is an integral part of successful essay structure and its importance should not be overlooked. If required, you might also want to add a Works Cited list in the end.

Good luck with your essay-writing!

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