Secondary School Level

How To Prepare For A Good Essay

1. Have a clear idea of the subject of the essay before you attempt to write on it. Let there be no misunderstanding with regard to the meaning of the topic.

2. Put down on a rough piece of paper all the points that flash through your mind relating to the topic.

3. Now arrange the points in the best possible order such that your essay will grasp the attention of the reader.

4. Your best thoughts and sentences should be reserved for the first and last paragraphs. The introduction should be attractive and brief. It must necessarily serve to arouse the interest of the reader. The introduction may consist of an explanation or a statement of the subject and the way in which you are going to treat it, or an appropriate quotation, proverb, a very brief story, an incident or a general remark, but whatever may be the introduction it must lead to the subject.

The conclusion like the introduction should be effective and interesting an expression of yourself. A poor and dull ending can spoil the whole effect of the essay. The conclusion may consist of an intelligent and eye-catching summing-up of the argument of the essay with the final conclusion drawn from the subject-matter, a suitable quotation, or a sentence that strikingly expresses the main point you wish to make.

5. Stick strictly to the topic without straying away from it. Do not write anything which is not related to the main theme of the essay.

6. Do not repeat the same idea, not even in the concluding paragraph. Repetition of thoughts, sentiments, expressions and even key words should be avoided.

7. Avoid numerals and short forms such as don't, can't etc. Do not break words at the end of a line to continue in the next. Avoid abbreviations.

8. Do not change the sequence of tenses. If you write in the past tense you must write the essay throughout in the past tense only.

9. Be direct and simple. Write simple short sentences avoiding the temptation to use big words to impress the examiners.

10. As far as possible write from your own knowledge, experience and try to express your own ideas and feelings and not those of others.

Essays are generally categorised as: (a) Descriptive (b) Narrative (c) Reflective and (d) Argumentative. For convenience sake the former two will be dealt in Section-A and the latter two will be taken up in Section-B.


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