Eventually you will almost certainly become confused. If you get totally confused, take a break. When you return to the question, it may be that the problems have resolved themselves. If not, give yourself more time. You may well find that decent ideas simply pop into your conscious mind at unexpected times. You can of course follow the herd and repeat the interpretation given in your textbook.
But there are problems here. First, what is to distinguish your work from that of everybody else? The advice above is relevant to coursework essays. But even here, you should take time out to do some thinking. Examiners look for quality rather than quantity, and brevity makes relevance doubly important. The Vital First Paragraph Every part of an essay is important, but the first paragraph is vital.
This is the first chance you have to impress — or depress — an examiner, and first impressions are often decisive. You might therefore try to write an eye-catching first sentence. De Mille. More important is that you demonstrate your understanding of the question set.
Here you give your carefully thought out definitions of the key terms, and here you establish the relevant time-frame and issues — in other words, the parameters of the question.
Also, you divide the overall question into more manageable sub-divisions, or smaller questions, on each of which you will subsequently write a paragraph. You formulate an argument, or perhaps voice alternative lines of argument, that you will substantiate later in the essay. Hence the first paragraph — or perhaps you might spread this opening section over two paragraphs — is the key to a good essay.
The former is called a secondary source while the latter is called a primary source. The most important thing to do in research would be to expend every resource available in order to make your essay more substantial.
Incomplete research is just the same as presenting a haphazardly-done assignment in Math wherein the student ends up guessing every item on the list. Whatever reference you end up obtaining, make sure that you carefully determine what kind of source you are going to be reading.
Find your sources. In this age of technological advancement, finding good and credible sources seem to be lacking and incredibly scarce these days. With the rise of fake news and misleading sources and lies and whatnot, how could you filter what is true and what is fake and what could be very good material for your essay? You may also like what do you mean by writing skills? Rule number 1 in doing research is to never refer to the Internet directly. It may be the easiest way to find out what you need, but it is not always the most effective method unless you happen to come across some legitimate sources or electronic books or documents in which you can get them for free.
Sometimes, the best way is to just go old school and refer to books, magazines, newspaper articles, and others. At some point in your research, you should begin thinking about the contention of your essay. Remember, you should be able to express it briefly as if addressing the essay question in a single sentence, or summing up in a debate. It should sound like the voice of someone well informed about the subject and confident about their answer.
Plan an essay structure Once most of your research is complete and you have a strong contention, start jotting down a possible essay structure. This need not be complicated, a few lines or dot points is ample.
Every essay must have an introduction, a body of several paragraphs and a conclusion. Your paragraphs should be well organised and follow a logical sequence. Every paragraph should be clearly signposted in the topic sentence. Once you have a plan, start drafting your essay.
Write a compelling introduction Many consider the introduction to be the most important part of an essay. The introduction is important for several reasons. It is where you begin to signpost the direction your essay will take. Aim for an introduction that is clear, confident and punchy. Get straight to the point — do not waste time with a rambling or storytelling introduction. Write fully formed paragraphs Many history students fall into the trap of writing short paragraphs, sometimes containing as little as one or two sentences.
This sentence introduces the paragraph topic and briefly explains its significance to the question and your contention. Good paragraphs also contain thorough explanations, some analysis and evidence, perhaps a quotation or two. Finish with an effective conclusion The conclusion is the final paragraph of your essay. A good conclusion should do two things. You should always avoid introducing new information or evidence in a conclusion.
Reference and cite your sources A history essay is only likely to succeed if it is appropriately referenced. Your essay should support its information, ideas and arguments with citations or references to reliable sources. Referencing not only acknowledges the work of others, it also gives authority to your writing and provides the teacher or assessor with an insight into your research. Ask a campus Librarian.
Peruse online journal databases; most colleges provide students with free access. When in doubt, make an appointment and ask the professor for guidance. Each section of your history essay must serve its purpose. Here is what you should include in essay paragraphs.
Introduction Paragraph Unsure of how to start a history essay?
Whatever reference you end up obtaining, make sure that you carefully determine what kind of source you are going to be reading.
Your research should take shape from here, guided by the essay question and your own planning.
An essay question will set some kind of task or challenge. Long sentences can easily become disjointed, confused or rambling. Once you have made your plan, you are ready to begin.
Who is the author?
The former is called a secondary source while the latter is called a primary source. If the person benefits from extraordinary good luck, is that still a success?
Evaluate your secondary sources. Planning This is without doubt the most vital part of writing an essay. Ideally your introduction should sparkle, leaving the impression 'Wow, this girl knows what she's talking about: I want to read more'. It serves both as an answer to the question and the focal point of your writing. You may also like what do you mean by writing skills? This is the first chance you have to impress — or depress — an examiner, and first impressions are often decisive.
The respective plan templates provide you with writing tips in terms of structure and content.
Persuasive Plan Template — Persuasive essays can be tricky. Both history and human society, however, are never this clear cut or simple. Once you have done so, success will be yours.
Begin with a plan Every essay should begin with a written plan. Get into the habit of criticising your own first drafts, and never be satisfied with second-best efforts. They should sound rational and factual — not like an individual expressing their opinion.
Ask yourself whether or not it is part of a certain tradition in historiography and is it in response to a particular idea. The regulations often specify that, in the A2 year, students should be familiar with the main interpretations of historians. Preferably, it should also be short — if your introduction lasts much more than a third of a page, you have missed the point. This will be immediately obvious to anyone reading the essay and gain you a few marks.