- Utility Menu
- Questions about Expos?
- Writing Support for Instructors
Writing an academic essay means fashioning a coherent set of ideas into an argument. Because essays are essentially linear—they offer one idea at a time—they must present their ideas in the order that makes most sense to a reader. Successfully structuring an essay means attending to a reader's logic.
The focus of such an essay predicts its structure. It dictates the information readers need to know and the order in which they need to receive it. Thus your essay's structure is necessarily unique to the main claim you're making. Although there are guidelines for constructing certain classic essay types (e.g., comparative analysis), there are no set formula.
Answering Questions: The Parts of an Essay
A typical essay contains many different kinds of information, often located in specialized parts or sections. Even short essays perform several different operations: introducing the argument, analyzing data, raising counterarguments, concluding. Introductions and conclusions have fixed places, but other parts don't. Counterargument, for example, may appear within a paragraph, as a free-standing section, as part of the beginning, or before the ending. Background material (historical context or biographical information, a summary of relevant theory or criticism, the definition of a key term) often appears at the beginning of the essay, between the introduction and the first analytical section, but might also appear near the beginning of the specific section to which it's relevant.
It's helpful to think of the different essay sections as answering a series of questions your reader might ask when encountering your thesis. (Readers should have questions. If they don't, your thesis is most likely simply an observation of fact, not an arguable claim.)
"What?" The first question to anticipate from a reader is "what": What evidence shows that the phenomenon described by your thesis is true? To answer the question you must examine your evidence, thus demonstrating the truth of your claim. This "what" or "demonstration" section comes early in the essay, often directly after the introduction. Since you're essentially reporting what you've observed, this is the part you might have most to say about when you first start writing. But be forewarned: it shouldn't take up much more than a third (often much less) of your finished essay. If it does, the essay will lack balance and may read as mere summary or description.
"How?" A reader will also want to know whether the claims of the thesis are true in all cases. The corresponding question is "how": How does the thesis stand up to the challenge of a counterargument? How does the introduction of new material—a new way of looking at the evidence, another set of sources—affect the claims you're making? Typically, an essay will include at least one "how" section. (Call it "complication" since you're responding to a reader's complicating questions.) This section usually comes after the "what," but keep in mind that an essay may complicate its argument several times depending on its length, and that counterargument alone may appear just about anywhere in an essay.
"Why?" Your reader will also want to know what's at stake in your claim: Why does your interpretation of a phenomenon matter to anyone beside you? This question addresses the larger implications of your thesis. It allows your readers to understand your essay within a larger context. In answering "why", your essay explains its own significance. Although you might gesture at this question in your introduction, the fullest answer to it properly belongs at your essay's end. If you leave it out, your readers will experience your essay as unfinished—or, worse, as pointless or insular.
Mapping an Essay
Structuring your essay according to a reader's logic means examining your thesis and anticipating what a reader needs to know, and in what sequence, in order to grasp and be convinced by your argument as it unfolds. The easiest way to do this is to map the essay's ideas via a written narrative. Such an account will give you a preliminary record of your ideas, and will allow you to remind yourself at every turn of the reader's needs in understanding your idea.
Essay maps ask you to predict where your reader will expect background information, counterargument, close analysis of a primary source, or a turn to secondary source material. Essay maps are not concerned with paragraphs so much as with sections of an essay. They anticipate the major argumentative moves you expect your essay to make. Try making your map like this:
- State your thesis in a sentence or two, then write another sentence saying why it's important to make that claim. Indicate, in other words, what a reader might learn by exploring the claim with you. Here you're anticipating your answer to the "why" question that you'll eventually flesh out in your conclusion.
- Begin your next sentence like this: "To be convinced by my claim, the first thing a reader needs to know is . . ." Then say why that's the first thing a reader needs to know, and name one or two items of evidence you think will make the case. This will start you off on answering the "what" question. (Alternately, you may find that the first thing your reader needs to know is some background information.)
- Begin each of the following sentences like this: "The next thing my reader needs to know is . . ." Once again, say why, and name some evidence. Continue until you've mapped out your essay.
Your map should naturally take you through some preliminary answers to the basic questions of what, how, and why. It is not a contract, though—the order in which the ideas appear is not a rigid one. Essay maps are flexible; they evolve with your ideas.
Signs of Trouble
A common structural flaw in college essays is the "walk-through" (also labeled "summary" or "description"). Walk-through essays follow the structure of their sources rather than establishing their own. Such essays generally have a descriptive thesis rather than an argumentative one. Be wary of paragraph openers that lead off with "time" words ("first," "next," "after," "then") or "listing" words ("also," "another," "in addition"). Although they don't always signal trouble, these paragraph openers often indicate that an essay's thesis and structure need work: they suggest that the essay simply reproduces the chronology of the source text (in the case of time words: first this happens, then that, and afterwards another thing . . . ) or simply lists example after example ("In addition, the use of color indicates another way that the painting differentiates between good and evil").
Copyright 2000, Elizabeth Abrams, for the Writing Center at Harvard University
- How to Read an Assignment
- How to Do a Close Reading
- Developing A Thesis
- Topic Sentences and Signposting
- Transitioning: Beware of Velcro
- How to Write a Comparative Analysis
- Ending the Essay: Conclusions
- Brief Guides to Writing in the Disciplines
- Schedule an Appointment
- Drop-in Hours
- English Grammar and Language Tutor
- Harvard Guide to Using Sources
- Writing Advice: The Harvard Writing Tutor Blog
- Departmental Writing Fellows
- Videos from the 2022 Three Minute Thesis Competition
Have a language expert improve your writing
Run a free plagiarism check in 10 minutes, generate accurate citations for free.
- Knowledge Base
The Beginner's Guide to Writing an Essay | Steps & Examples
An academic essay is a focused piece of writing that develops an idea or argument using evidence, analysis, and interpretation.
There are many types of essays you might write as a student. The content and length of an essay depends on your level, subject of study, and course requirements. However, most essays at university level are argumentative — they aim to persuade the reader of a particular position or perspective on a topic.
The essay writing process consists of three main stages:
- Preparation: Decide on your topic, do your research, and create an essay outline.
- Writing : Set out your argument in the introduction, develop it with evidence in the main body, and wrap it up with a conclusion.
- Revision: Check the content, organization, grammar, spelling, and formatting of your essay.
Table of contents
Essay writing process, preparation for writing an essay, writing the introduction, writing the main body, writing the conclusion, essay checklist, lecture slides, frequently asked questions about writing an essay.
The writing process of preparation, writing, and revisions applies to every essay or paper, but the time and effort spent on each stage depends on the type of essay .
For example, if you’ve been assigned a five-paragraph expository essay for a high school class, you’ll probably spend the most time on the writing stage; for a college-level argumentative essay , on the other hand, you’ll need to spend more time researching your topic and developing an original argument before you start writing.
Before you start writing, you should make sure you have a clear idea of what you want to say and how you’re going to say it. There are a few key steps you can follow to make sure you’re prepared:
- Understand your assignment: What is the goal of this essay? What is the length and deadline of the assignment? Is there anything you need to clarify with your teacher or professor?
- Define a topic: If you’re allowed to choose your own topic , try to pick something that you already know a bit about and that will hold your interest.
- Do your research: Read primary and secondary sources and take notes to help you work out your position and angle on the topic. You’ll use these as evidence for your points.
- Come up with a thesis: The thesis is the central point or argument that you want to make. A clear thesis is essential for a focused essay—you should keep referring back to it as you write.
- Create an outline: Map out the rough structure of your essay in an outline . This makes it easier to start writing and keeps you on track as you go.
Once you’ve got a clear idea of what you want to discuss, in what order, and what evidence you’ll use, you’re ready to start writing.
Here's why students love Scribbr's proofreading services
Discover proofreading & editing
The introduction sets the tone for your essay. It should grab the reader’s interest and inform them of what to expect. The introduction generally comprises 10–20% of the text.
1. Hook your reader
The first sentence of the introduction should pique your reader’s interest and curiosity. This sentence is sometimes called the hook. It might be an intriguing question, a surprising fact, or a bold statement emphasizing the relevance of the topic.
Let’s say we’re writing an essay about the development of Braille (the raised-dot reading and writing system used by visually impaired people). Our hook can make a strong statement about the topic:
The invention of Braille was a major turning point in the history of disability.
2. Provide background on your topic
Next, it’s important to give context that will help your reader understand your argument. This might involve providing background information, giving an overview of important academic work or debates on the topic, and explaining difficult terms. Don’t provide too much detail in the introduction—you can elaborate in the body of your essay.
3. Present the thesis statement
Next, you should formulate your thesis statement— the central argument you’re going to make. The thesis statement provides focus and signals your position on the topic. It is usually one or two sentences long. The thesis statement for our essay on Braille could look like this:
As the first writing system designed for blind people’s needs, Braille was a groundbreaking new accessibility tool. It not only provided practical benefits, but also helped change the cultural status of blindness.
4. Map the structure
In longer essays, you can end the introduction by briefly describing what will be covered in each part of the essay. This guides the reader through your structure and gives a preview of how your argument will develop.
The invention of Braille marked a major turning point in the history of disability. The writing system of raised dots used by blind and visually impaired people was developed by Louis Braille in nineteenth-century France. In a society that did not value disabled people in general, blindness was particularly stigmatized, and lack of access to reading and writing was a significant barrier to social participation. The idea of tactile reading was not entirely new, but existing methods based on sighted systems were difficult to learn and use. As the first writing system designed for blind people’s needs, Braille was a groundbreaking new accessibility tool. It not only provided practical benefits, but also helped change the cultural status of blindness. This essay begins by discussing the situation of blind people in nineteenth-century Europe. It then describes the invention of Braille and the gradual process of its acceptance within blind education. Subsequently, it explores the wide-ranging effects of this invention on blind people’s social and cultural lives.
Write your essay introduction
The body of your essay is where you make arguments supporting your thesis, provide evidence, and develop your ideas. Its purpose is to present, interpret, and analyze the information and sources you have gathered to support your argument.
Length of the body text
The length of the body depends on the type of essay. On average, the body comprises 60–80% of your essay. For a high school essay, this could be just three paragraphs, but for a graduate school essay of 6,000 words, the body could take up 8–10 pages.
To give your essay a clear structure , it is important to organize it into paragraphs . Each paragraph should be centered around one main point or idea.
That idea is introduced in a topic sentence . The topic sentence should generally lead on from the previous paragraph and introduce the point to be made in this paragraph. Transition words can be used to create clear connections between sentences.
After the topic sentence, present evidence such as data, examples, or quotes from relevant sources. Be sure to interpret and explain the evidence, and show how it helps develop your overall argument.
Lack of access to reading and writing put blind people at a serious disadvantage in nineteenth-century society. Text was one of the primary methods through which people engaged with culture, communicated with others, and accessed information; without a well-developed reading system that did not rely on sight, blind people were excluded from social participation (Weygand, 2009). While disabled people in general suffered from discrimination, blindness was widely viewed as the worst disability, and it was commonly believed that blind people were incapable of pursuing a profession or improving themselves through culture (Weygand, 2009). This demonstrates the importance of reading and writing to social status at the time: without access to text, it was considered impossible to fully participate in society. Blind people were excluded from the sighted world, but also entirely dependent on sighted people for information and education.
See the full essay example
The conclusion is the final paragraph of an essay. It should generally take up no more than 10–15% of the text . A strong essay conclusion :
- Returns to your thesis
- Ties together your main points
- Shows why your argument matters
A great conclusion should finish with a memorable or impactful sentence that leaves the reader with a strong final impression.
What not to include in a conclusion
To make your essay’s conclusion as strong as possible, there are a few things you should avoid. The most common mistakes are:
- Including new arguments or evidence
- Undermining your arguments (e.g. “This is just one approach of many”)
- Using concluding phrases like “To sum up…” or “In conclusion…”
Braille paved the way for dramatic cultural changes in the way blind people were treated and the opportunities available to them. Louis Braille’s innovation was to reimagine existing reading systems from a blind perspective, and the success of this invention required sighted teachers to adapt to their students’ reality instead of the other way around. In this sense, Braille helped drive broader social changes in the status of blindness. New accessibility tools provide practical advantages to those who need them, but they can also change the perspectives and attitudes of those who do not.
Write your essay conclusion
My essay follows the requirements of the assignment (topic and length ).
My introduction sparks the reader’s interest and provides any necessary background information on the topic.
My introduction contains a thesis statement that states the focus and position of the essay.
I use paragraphs to structure the essay.
I use topic sentences to introduce each paragraph.
Each paragraph has a single focus and a clear connection to the thesis statement.
I make clear transitions between paragraphs and ideas.
My conclusion doesn’t just repeat my points, but draws connections between arguments.
I don’t introduce new arguments or evidence in the conclusion.
I have given an in-text citation for every quote or piece of information I got from another source.
I have included a reference page at the end of my essay, listing full details of all my sources.
My citations and references are correctly formatted according to the required citation style .
My essay has an interesting and informative title.
I have followed all formatting guidelines (e.g. font, page numbers, line spacing).
Your essay meets all the most important requirements. Our editors can give it a final check to help you submit with confidence.
Open Google Slides Download PowerPoint
An essay is a focused piece of writing that explains, argues, describes, or narrates.
In high school, you may have to write many different types of essays to develop your writing skills.
Academic essays at college level are usually argumentative : you develop a clear thesis about your topic and make a case for your position using evidence, analysis and interpretation.
The structure of an essay is divided into an introduction that presents your topic and thesis statement , a body containing your in-depth analysis and arguments, and a conclusion wrapping up your ideas.
The structure of the body is flexible, but you should always spend some time thinking about how you can organize your essay to best serve your ideas.
Your essay introduction should include three main things, in this order:
- An opening hook to catch the reader’s attention.
- Relevant background information that the reader needs to know.
- A thesis statement that presents your main point or argument.
The length of each part depends on the length and complexity of your essay .
A thesis statement is a sentence that sums up the central point of your paper or essay . Everything else you write should relate to this key idea.
The thesis statement is essential in any academic essay or research paper for two main reasons:
- It gives your writing direction and focus.
- It gives the reader a concise summary of your main point.
Without a clear thesis statement, an essay can end up rambling and unfocused, leaving your reader unsure of exactly what you want to say.
A topic sentence is a sentence that expresses the main point of a paragraph . Everything else in the paragraph should relate to the topic sentence.
At college level, you must properly cite your sources in all essays , research papers , and other academic texts (except exams and in-class exercises).
Add a citation whenever you quote , paraphrase , or summarize information or ideas from a source. You should also give full source details in a bibliography or reference list at the end of your text.
The exact format of your citations depends on which citation style you are instructed to use. The most common styles are APA , MLA , and Chicago .
Is this article helpful?
Other students also liked.
- How long is an essay? Guidelines for different types of essay
- How to write an essay introduction | 4 steps & examples
- How to conclude an essay | Interactive example
More interesting articles
- Checklist for academic essays | Is your essay ready to submit?
- Comparing and contrasting in an essay | Tips & examples
- Example of a great essay | Explanations, tips & tricks
- Generate topic ideas for an essay or paper | Tips & techniques
- How to revise an essay in 3 simple steps
- How to structure an essay: Templates and tips
- How to write a descriptive essay | Example & tips
- How to write a literary analysis essay | A step-by-step guide
- How to write a narrative essay | Example & tips
- How to write a rhetorical analysis | Key concepts & examples
- How to Write a Thesis Statement | 4 Steps & Examples
- How to write an argumentative essay | Examples & tips
- How to write an essay outline | Guidelines & examples
- How to write an expository essay
- How to write the body of an essay | Drafting & redrafting
- Kinds of argumentative academic essays and their purposes
- Organizational tips for academic essays
- The four main types of essay | Quick guide with examples
- Transition sentences | Tips & examples for clear writing
What is your plagiarism score?
How Many Paragraphs in an Essay?
As a rule, you’ll write your essay in three main parts. First, you’ll introduce your topic to your reader. Next, you will have body text in which you discuss the topic in more detail, and finally, you’ll have a conclusion that tells your reader what you were able to see after looking into the facts or thinking through the topic.
In its simplest form, an essay can consist of three paragraphs with one paragraph being devoted to each section. Proponents of the five paragraph essay say that the body text should consist of three paragraphs, but in reality, it’s fine to write more or fewer paragraphs in this section.
Guessing How Many Paragraphs Before You Begin
This is a rule of thumb, which means it won’t always work quite that way, but it’s handy all the same. In academic work, your paragraphs are likely to be a bit longer than most of the ones you see in this blog post. On average, there are usually 100 to 200 words in a paragraph . So if you’d like a guesstimate, you can assume that a 1,000-word essay will have between five and ten paragraphs.
What Points Do You Have to Cover?
Another, less limiting and more accurate way to work out how many paragraphs you need to cover your topic is to look at the main points you have to cover in the body text. A paragraph contains all the ideas that support or explain a single concept.
When you are planning your essay, you will think of or research the main elements that are needed in the body text. It would be safe to assume you need at least one paragraph for each of these. Of course, if there is a lot of information to cover in order to explore each area, you may need more.
For example, if you are writing an essay on childhood development and exposure to technology, you will want to look into the physical, psychological and cognitive developmental effects of tech on kids. When you research this topic, you will find that there are contrasting points of view and researchers have identified several physical, developmental, and psychological effects of technology use in children.
Assuming five psychological effects have been identified, you can assume you’ll need to write five paragraphs if you are going to write a relatively in-depth essay. But if both those who say technology is bad for kids and those who say it can be good have done a great deal of work on the sub-topic, you might want to make that ten paragraphs so that you can cover both sides of the argument and look into how earlier authors reached their conclusions.
Of course, if you have been set a relatively short word limit , you may not be able to go in-depth at all, in which case a paragraph for each of the main sub-topics (psychology, physical development, and cognitive development) will likely be adequate.
Essay Content Is More Important Than the Number of Paragraphs
Ultimately, your essay will be evaluated on the information you present, not on the number of paragraphs in the essay. Early in your academic life, teachers and lecturers may give you both a structure for your essay and a guideline on how long each part of the essay should be. I have seen essay instructions say how many marks are allocated for each section, and my trick is to take the total word count and allocate a percentage of words to each section based on the percentage of marks you can get for it. After all, if the teacher is allocating 80 marks for content in total and you can see 50% of the mark relates to a certain part of the essay, then 50% of your essay’s words should be devoted to that section.
Sometimes, you’ll just be given a topic and told to air your opinion. This gives you more freedom, but it’s a tad more difficult. The research will show you how many angles you should look at, and it’ll help you to find information that both supports and contradicts your point of view. To make a strong argument, you need to look at both supporting and contradictory information.
To avoid getting tangled up in one aspect of the discussion, you’ll have to decide how long it should be. If it’s the most important aspect informing your conclusion, you can spend a little more time (and words) on that particular point. It could run into several paragraphs rather than just one or two.
Always Remember the Purpose of Paragraphs
Paragraphs structure information into sub-topics, and they make your work easier to read and understand thanks to the structure they provide. With careful advance planning, you’ll be able to work out more or less how many paragraphs you need to complete your essay.
How many paragraphs is…
For those looking for a general rule-of-thumb, below are some estimates on the number of paragraphs there would be in an essay of different lengths based on an average length of 150 words per paragraph. Of course, the number of paragraphs for your essay will depend on many different factors. You can use the following information for a general reference, but don’t take these numbers as literal. .
Basic Essay Word to Paragraphs Conversions
- A 100 word essay is 3 paragraph. (minimum for an essay)
- A 200 word essay is 3 paragraphs. (minimum for an essay)
- A 250 word essay is 3 paragraphs. (minimum for an essay)
- A 300 word essay is 3 paragraphs. (minimum for an essay)
- A 400 word essay is 3 paragraphs. (minimum for an essay)
- A 500 word essay is 3 to 4 paragraphs.
- A 600 word essay is 4 paragraphs.
- A 700 word essay is 4 to 5 paragraphs.
- A 750 word essay is 5 paragraphs.
- A 800 word essay is 5 to 6 paragraphs.
- A 900 word essay is 6 paragraphs.
- A 1,000 word essay is 6 to 7 paragraphs.
- A 1,250 word essay is 8 to 9 paragraphs.
- A 1,500 word essay is 10 paragraphs.
- A 1,750 word essay is 11 to 12 paragraphs.
- A 2,000 word essay is 13 to 14 paragraphs.
- A 2,500 word essay is 16 to 17 paragraphs.
- A 3,000 word essay is 20 paragraphs.
- A 4,000 word essay is 26 to 27 paragraphs.
- A 5,000 word essay is 33 to 34 paragraphs.
- A 6,000 word essay is 40 paragraphs.
- A 7,000 word essay is 46 to 37 paragraphs.
- A 7,500 word essay is 50 paragraphs.
- A 8,000 word essay is 53 to 54 paragraphs.
- A 9,000 word essay is 60 paragraphs.
- A 10,000 word essay is 66 to 67 paragraphs.
I don’t understand, How can a 100, 200, 300 and 400 word essay all have 3 paragraphs if a paragraph is 100 to 200 words long? A 100 word essay should be 1 paragraph or 1/2 a paragraph, not 3 paragraphs. Can someone explain this too me?
A sentence is an idea. A paragraph is a group of ideas that relate to one another. That’s the most important point. The second most important one is remembering that your text consists of introduction, body, conclusion with at LEAST one paragraph for each. While teachers like 100 to 200 word paragraphs, you can’t always apply that. Call it a guideline rather than a rule!
the general rule is that 3 paragraphs are minimum for an essay. So, no matter how short your essay is, you should still need 3 paragraphs. If you are really for some reason writing a 100 word essay, then you should have one short sentence for both your introduction and conclusion.
I was always taught an essay has five paragraphs by my teachers. Did they lie to me? If an essay only needs three paragraphs, why would my teachers tell me that they should have five?
I think the five paragraphs for an essay is more of a rule-of-thumb number that is easy to teach students when they are first learning to write. Your teacher was just trying to make sure you understood how to write, not give you a rule you had to always obey.
I think five paragraphs is a good number to shoot for when writing, but it isn’t a hard-fast rule you need to hit every time. Each essay is different and require more or less paragraphs depending on the information you need to provide in the writing.
yes and no.. i would say a good on as 4 paragraph. Intro, 2 body P, and a conclusion.
My teachers always taught by eight paragraph essays, but five-paragraph essays normally lie precedent to the more advanced or larger essays.
I was taught essays should be 7 paragraphs long, not 5. My teacher said 3 central paragraphs never gives enough detail to the topic, so we should write 5. It makes sense to me and that is how I’ve always done it.
What you’re taught is often a general rule to shoot for, not a rule set in concrete. That’s the case with this. Your teacher felt that 7 paragraphs was a good number for the essays you wrote for her, but it doesn’t always have to be that way. it’s a general rule, not a concrete one.
How many sentences if we don’t know how many sentences we need to write?
The average paragraph contains 5-6 sentences. If you’re feeling a little extra, paragraphs can be 7-10 sentences.
It also depends on whether or not you are bringing outside information into the paragraph as well. Using quotes makes a paragraph longer than not doing so.
I think the length of a paper depends mainly on the instructions given by the instructor. Secondly, I would decide a paper length on the basis of the grading rubric.
I already knew an essay has three paragraphs
Inilividual project: follow all steps and develop a paragraph of your choice and write all expository essay with not less than 500 words of the povoloped paragraph?
On average for a five-paragraph essay, I write around 1,000-1300 words. For an eight paragraph essay, I write around 2,000-2,600 words on the document. Keep in mind your quotes too, you should have one quote per paragraph (expected) or two (recommended). It really is up to the person though, I have a buddy who writes considerably less than I do, but is able to get his point across. It is really up to the person.
Student A: Sir, do we have to write a long essay?
- 4 Simple Tips for Great Writing
- Avoiding Wordiness: 330 Examples & What to Use Instead
- The Oxford Comma: The Splice of Life
- Who vs. Whom
- Affect vs. Effect
- How to Take Notes: The 10-Step Guide to Note-Taking (Infographic)
- CMOS vs. AP – Recent Changes & Comparison (Updated 1. Nov. 2021)
- The Daily Word Counts of 19 Famous Writers
- The Ideal Length of Everything You Write Online ( Infographic)
- 8 Famous Authors and Their Favorite Writing Spots
- YEET on Avoiding Wordiness: 330 Examples & What to Use Instead
- olobubu on Word Counter Reading Level Feature
- Devil's Advocate on Word Counter Reading Level Feature
- Devil's Advocate on Publisher Word Count for Magazine Writing
Please log in again. The login page will open in a new tab. After logging in you can close it and return to this page.
How to Write an Outstanding 7 Paragraph Essay with No Worries
Writing an essay with 7 paragraphs may be confusing as there are no strict requirements regarding the content of each paragraph. Therefore, here the content will greatly depend on the type of the essay you are writing as well as the information you are going to use. Nevertheless, there are several tips that will help you to cope with a 7 paragraph essay regardless of your topic and content.
In general, a 7-paragraph essay is the most suitable for the text of 4 pages (or 1000-1200 words double-spaced). This is not a big paper to conduct an in-depth research; however, that should still be a thoroughful essay with credible arguments and persuasive points. Usually such format is used for argumentative or contrast-comparative essay; still, you can write a 7-paragraph essay with other types of the papers as well — just make sure that you will have enough space to use all your arguments and will not have to add empty information in order to meet the necessary number of paragraphs. So, let’s see how the most widespread types of 7-paragraph essay should be written.
Tips for Writing a 7-paragraph Persuasive Essay
The number of paragraphs in a persuasive paper usually depends on the number of arguments you wish to use. Therefore, we recommend to develop the structure of your paper based on the points you wish to discuss rather than to build the content around the preferred number of paragraphs. Nevertheless, if you wish to stick specifically to a 7-paragraph essay, here is the basic structure you can use for a persuasive paper:
In the introduction, you should state why the issue you are going to discuss is relevant, grab the attention of the audience, and introduce your position, as well as the main points that prove it.
Here, you can get the audience familiar with the topic or the most difficult aspects of it, if the topic chosen contains specific concepts. If not, you can return to the history of the issue or tell about crucial studies on the problem.
III-V. The arguments that substantiate your position
In the body paragraphs, you should persuade the audience that your position is correct. Use the relevant arguments and sources to make your points even more credible.
VI. The contrargument
Include at least one argument that may contradict your position and show its inconsistency. In such a case, you will strengthen your position by showing that its critics is not credible.
Finish the essay by summarizing the main arguments and strengthening your position even more (if possible).
You can also use different types of outline for 7-paragraph persuasive essay: for instance, you can omit the background paragraph and use additional argument for your position. However, make sure that all the arguments used are totally different from each other, while all of them are strong and crucial for your position.
How to Write a 7-paragraph Compare and Contrast Essay
While you can use additional paragraphs to include more arguments in the persuasive essay; the similar approach can be used while writing a comparative essay. Basically, instead of the arguments you will use more points for comparing or contrasting the issues. As in the previous example, you can use one paragraph for background; however, that may be not necessary if both objects of comparison are familiar to the audience — it all depends on the topic you have chosen for the compare and contrast essay. Still, you can use the paragraph after introduction for the different purposes. Here we will introduce two different types of 7-paragraph compare and contrast essay, both of which can be used in academic writing.
Again, provide a catchy statement to attract the audience, add some relevant information further, and finish the paragraph with a well-developed thesis statement.
II. Reasons for Comparing
Instead of providing background, you can inform the reader on why the two points of your choice should be actually compared. However, this paragraph will work only if the link is not obvious: if you will compare Clinton and Trump or World War I and World War II, there is no need to explain why you have chosen these two particular people or phenomena.
III-VI. Points of Comparing
Use the points you will build the comparison around. Make sure that they allow seeing the issues chosen from the different sides, spotting the real differences between them.
Finish the paper summarizing all the points of comparison/contrast and explain why it is essential.
Option 2 will be similar; however, differences in the structure might be as follows:
II. Point of comparison
III. Point of contrast
IV. Point of comparison
V. Point of contrast
VI. Point of comparison
You can change the order and start from the point of comparison. However, it is essential to finish with the point that you consider the strongest: therefore, if you think that two objects are rather different than similar, make sure that your last body paragraph discusses the differences.
- How to Write a 2 Paragraph Essay: The Only Guide You’ll Need
- How to Write a 3 Paragraph Essay: The Best Tips for a Perfect Paper
- Writing a Spectacular Four Paragraph Essay: Outline Example and Structure Tips
- How to Write a 5-page Essay Like a Pro: The Only Tips You’ll Need to Know
- How to Write a 10-Page Essay if You Have No Time Left: Top Tips
- How I See Myself in 10 Years From Now Essay Example
- How to Write The 13th Documentary Essay: Free Paper Example
- How to Write a 20 Page Essay: Top 5 Tips That Really Help
- How to Write a 100-Words Essay: Learning How to Fit into the Limit + Examples
- How to Write a Striking 300-Word Essay: The Only Tips You’ll Need
Sign in to your account
In an essay under 3000 words, the introduction is usually just one paragraph. In longer and more complex essays, you might need to lay out the background and introduce your argument over two or three paragraphs. The conclusion of an essay is often a single paragraph, even in longer essays.
Essay maps are not concerned with paragraphs so much as with sections of an essay. They anticipate the major argumentative moves you expect your essay to make. Try making your map like this: State your thesis in a sentence or two, then write another sentence saying why it's important to make that claim.
The length of the body depends on the type of essay. On average, the body comprises 60–80% of your essay. For a high school essay, this could be just three paragraphs, but for a graduate school essay of 6,000 words, the body could take up 8–10 pages. Paragraph structure
A 1,000 word essay is 6 to 7 paragraphs. A 1,250 word essay is 8 to 9 paragraphs. A 1,500 word essay is 10 paragraphs. A 1,750 word essay is 11 to 12 paragraphs. A 2,000 word essay is 13 to 14 paragraphs. A 2,500 word essay is 16 to 17 paragraphs. A 3,000 word essay is 20 paragraphs. A 4,000 word essay is 26 to 27 paragraphs.
Here we will introduce two different types of 7-paragraph compare and contrast essay, both of which can be used in academic writing. Option 1. I. Introduction. Again, provide a catchy statement to attract the audience, add some relevant information further, and finish the paragraph with a well-developed thesis statement. II.