Art of Craftsmanship

Academic writing tips and guidelines

An Ultimate College Essay Writing Manual

It’s inevitable that you will be asked to compose essays on various topics in college. Instead of having a headache over it, read the following steps and tips carefully. It is your ultimate college essay writing guide.

  1. Understand Your Essay Topic.
  2. Highlight the keywords in the essay topic.

    Identify the keywords of the essay task, such as “compare”, “explain”, and “discuss”. These words indicate what should be accomplished in the essay.

    Identify the topic words such as “the reasons behind the collapse of Soviet Union”, “the character ‘Romeo’ in Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet, etc.

    Identify the words that restrict your essay discussion to a certain area. For example: “during the ‘eighteenth century’”, “in Chapter 2”, etc.

  3. Read and Research.
  4. Use accessible and relevant sources.

    Write down notes, quotations and notes for the sources.

  5. Brainstorm your Ideas.
  6. Write down any relevant ideas.

    Write down the evidence and quotes that can support your ideas.

    Stimulate lateral thinking with a mind map.

  7. Develop a Thesis.
  8. The thesis is a statement and it should strongly express an overall response to the essay topic.

    The thesis is the backbone of the essay.

    The thesis should not be vague or too simplistic.

  9. Outline your Essay.
  10. Organize your ideas in logical order and make sure they are relevant to the essay topic.

    Use concise language and bullet points to make a clear outline.

    Your outline is the structure guide for your essay.

  11. Introduction.
  12. Open up your essay and introduce the thesis.

    Name any ideas to be discussed and indicate how the problems can be solved.

    Engage your reader.

  13. The Body.
  14. Use a new paragraph for each point.

    At the beginning of each new paragraph, use phrases that can indicate how the new paragraph is related to the previous one. For example: “in addition”, “however”, “moreover”, “nevertheless”, etc.

    Provide information and evidence for any point you make.

    While writing body part, you can revisit your thesis and change the way you express it if needed.

  15. Conclusion.
  16. Summarize the main ideas of your essay.

    Demonstrate how the thesis has been proved.

    Use a thought-provoking comment to finish.

  17. Edit Your Draft.
  18. Correct any spelling, grammar, or punctuation errors.

    Delete any irrelevant sentences.

    Change the vocabulary used to improve your expression.

    Seek feedbacks from someone else.

  19. The Final Copy.
  20. Add bibliography and footnotes.

    Make sure your copy is clean and neat.

    Submit your essay on time.