how an essay should look
how an essay should look
- 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.
Answering Questions: The Parts of an Essay
Examples should be relevant to the thesis and so should the explanatory details you provide for them. It can be hard to summarize the full richness of a given example in just a few lines so make them count. If you are trying to explain why George Washington is a great example of a strong leader, for instance, his childhood adventure with the cherry tree (though interesting in another essay) should probably be skipped over.
The principle purpose of the introduction is to present your position (this is also known as the “thesis” or “argument”) on the issue at hand but effective introductory paragraphs are so much more than that. Before you even get to this thesis statement, for example, the essay should begin with a “hook” that grabs the reader’s attention and makes them want to read on. Examples of effective hooks include relevant quotations (“no man is an island”) or surprising statistics (“three out of four doctors report that…”).
The same bullet point structure can be applied to the Chicago essay format.
- Chicago style title page is all about spacing.
- Down the page should be the title, with regular text. If longer than one line, double-spaced.
- Next, in the very middle, center your full name.
- Down the page – course number, instructor’s name and the date in separate double-spaced lines.
For all others, start with outlining your introduction. Write a sentence about your topic and introduce your thesis. You can also mention an essay hook here – a sentence you’ll use to make the audience interested in reading your work.
Essay Outline: General
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Do not introduce any new ideas or topics to the paper in your conclusion.