(a sample essay demonstrating what NOT to do)
How Not to Write an Academic Essay
An introduction should have a hook which captures attention and a clear thesis and some other stuff, so that the reader knows where the writer is going with the paper.
Organization is important; all the thoughts in your essay should be connected. Like the cows in the field behind my house which eat a lot of grass, avoid including information which has no direct relevance to your topic.
Speaking of connecting thoughts, every new topic should have its own paragraph and all the ideas in the paragraph should be related. Writer’s block can be hard to overcome. New college students may be surprised at how different college-level writing is from high school. Paragraphs signal the reader that there has been a change in topic.
Creating new paragraphs wherever there hasn’t been a change of topic should also be avoided.
Transitions help the reader to see the logic behind your argument, because they clearly explain how each new idea relates to the previous. This is why it is important to have evidence which will convince your reader. Trust me, your reader will not just take your word on things and assume that what you say is true.
An essay should have a conclusion which gives a sense of finality and brings all the main points into a clear focus, so that the reader can see how the argument is relevant and have closure and not be left feeling like the thoughts are…