Seven Helpful Tips on How to Write a College Essay

Writing an essay can be a daunting task. If you are feeling overwhelmed by the process, it’s best to try and split things into smaller sections. If you tackle each section one by one, soon you will have a complete college essay! This article will give you some tips – read on!

Read the Essay Questions

The first thing you should do when you need to write an essay is read the essay questions. First of all, you need to choose which essay you want to do! Second, you want to be sure you understand the question correctly.

If I ask someone to do my essay for me, they will ask me for the question before they do anything else. You need to know what the question is asking before you can do anything else. Think what would happen if you wrote an entire essay on the wrong question. What would that do to your mark?

Focusing on the question first means that you can be sure of what is going on. More than that, you can do and ask a question if you need to. It’s much easier to do this before doing anything else.

Brainstorm in Detail

Once you have sorted out your question, you need to start brainstorming. What do you want to say, where can you find sources for it, how are you going to structure your essay…

You have a lot to do at this point! It’s best to make sure you know the best way to go about it.

Brainstorm how you are going to do your research. Do you have any ideas about what you are going to do, or do you need to start from scratch? You can always see where the research takes you, and work from there.

If you take the time to brainstorm your way through things at this point, then the rest of your essay writing process will go much more smoothly. You can map out everything you want to do in the rest of your essay at this point.

Structure Your Essay

Once you have done all the brainstorming you think you need, it’s time to structure your essay. Every type of essay has its own particular structure, so you should make sure to look up any specifics. If the structure isn’t correct, then your college essay will lose marks. Why risk it, when avoiding it is so easy?

Aside from the individual structure of the types of essay, essays as a whole have a particular structure. They all have introductions, conclusions, and body paragraphs. Every essay needs a thesis statement. Every paragraph needs a topic sentence and the start, and a joining sentence at the conclusion. These link all the paragraphs together into a whole.

Essays also have structure for another reason. Each essay will make the most sense to readers if it flows correctly. You need to make sure that every paragraph is in a logical place in the narrative. You should also make sure they have the proper beginnings and endings too.

First Draft

You should always write a first draft. If you haven’t been in the habit of doing so up until now, then you need to start. If you only remember one of the many college essay tips you will learn over the years, let it be this one!

A first draft will be the first time you get your ideas and arguments on paper (hence the name). It can be hugely helpful to actually see what you want to say, written down on paper. This first draft will not be your best work, but it will form the backbone of what you do next. Once you have written your first draft, take a good look at it. What do you want to keep? What do you want to change? What works, and what doesn’t work? These are all important questions to ask yourself.

Be a Real Person

When you are writing an essay, remember that it’s okay to make mistakes. This is always a tip for college students, because they put so much pressure on themselves. Nobody expects you to be perfect at this all the time. You are still learning.

Don’t try to get everything absolutely correct. Just do your best, and you will come up with a better essay than you would have otherwise. 

College essays are personal opinions. Unless absolutely stated otherwise, you can argue a question any way you want. In fact, you may get extra points if you approach a topic from a unique angle. Don’t try and force yourself to argue a point of view you don’t agree with. You will sound much more natural if you stick to your own personal viewpoints. This will also make the writing process easier, as you won’t be fighting your natural instincts the entire time.

Get Feedback

At this stage, you have finished your essay. Before you hand it in, you should try and get some feedback from the people around you. You don’t need to get everyone to look at your work. One or two people will be fine, but try and make sure they are very different people. This will give you more of an idea of what works and what doesn’t in your essay.

Feedback is good because you can easily miss problems with your own work. You end up so familiar with it that mistakes and inconsistencies simply don’t register. Getting other people to look at it is a great way to have these things highlighted. You can then make the needed changes.

College Essay
Photo Credit: Pixabay

Proofread, Then Proofread Again

This final tip should never be forgotten. Once you have written your essay, it is time to proofread it, then proofread it again. You will never truly learn how to write a good essay if you forget this stage. 

Proofreading is hugely important because spelling and grammar are key to good writing. So many people lose easy marks because they don’t proofread. Take a look over your work; you’d be amazed how many mistakes you’ve made without even realising it. Finding and correcting them will take your essay from good to great. It will elevate your writing. Good essays have good writing, as this makes it easier for people to understand what you are saying.

Did These Tips Help?

These seven tips aren’t the be all and end all of essay writing, of course. You can divide the tasks up your own way, if you find one that suits you better. This is just to get you started in the essay writing process. These tips will help your writing.

Author of the article:

Leon Edmunds began work in 2006. Since then, he has tried his hand at SEO and team communication management. He also writes for blogs and works as an academic writer at EduJungles, a professional essay writing service. His main interests are content marketing, communication skills development, and blogging. Every day he is looking for new ideas to help people achieve their career goals. His team is working as one ideal vehicle.

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