The compare and contrast piece is written in order to examine two art movements, literary genres, or historical periods, for example, and explain their similarities and distinctive features. Besides, in some cases, a student has to describe only common characteristics or differences.
Before you begin to work on a compare and contrast essay, you should check once again that you’ve taken into account all the aspects of composing this paper type. Of course, it seems to be the easiest task ever to describe objects, but it’s necessary to find out more information to cope with it excellently. It’s not only about finding an interesting topic and contrasting things but also about demonstrating your skills. As we’ve mentioned earlier, this essay should demonstrate how good you’re at describing objects, analyzing information, and estimating different characteristics. Additionally, the quality of your writing matters too because a professor expects to get an excellently written paper that explains common qualities and characteristics that make objects different.
Selecting a topic is real art because it can help you improve your scores or spoil everything. The truth is that we compare things all the time – from our vacation spots to products that were manufactured by the same brand. But expressing your thoughts in a paper is harder than just discussing things with your friend. That’s why, if your teacher allows you to select a topic on your own, you should consider our tips:
If you still don’t know which topic to choose, here are a few ideas to help you find an attention-grabbing theme:
If you’re writing a compare and contrast essay, select a format that will be comfortable for you to express your ideas. You can count all the qualities of one object in the first paragraph and dedicate the next part to another object. Contrasting the features of objects in different sections is also allowed. Here are three major structures students use to compose compare and contrast essays:
If you stick to this method, you’ll have to concentrate on two objects and select the main likenesses and differences. Every paragraph will contain the description of one point of these objects or phenomena. For example, if you’re discussing online education and studying at college, you can pick such features as cooperation between students and teachers, flexibility, and discipline. You’ll have to mention these points in the introductory part and write that you’ll compare them in your essay. Now, you can move to the body section and dedicate one paragraph to each of these features by comparing two objects:
Paragraph 1. Cooperation between students and professors:
Paragraph 2. Flexibility:
Paragraph 3. Discipline:
A Venn diagram is a perfect visualization tool that will demonstrate all possible common features and differences of objects. When looking at this image, you’ll be able to analyze the collected details and remove the unnecessary ones. Besides, you’ll help a reader process the information easier by including a Venn diagram in your text.
If you want to add a Venn diagram, you’ll have to draw two circles that intersect each other. Thus, you’ll get three sections where you’ll write the main points connected with objects. The middle part will contain the list of similarities, and differences will be collected in other empty sections.
This compare and contrast essay format can be chosen if you prefer to describe one object at first and write about another one in the next paragraph. It may be convenient to use a block structure because you can concentrate on each object separately. You won’t be confused because of the necessity to switch between them. For example, if you’re comparing the effects of tea and coffee, you can pick the block structure:
Paragraph 1. Tea:
Paragraph 2. Coffee:
How to start a compare and contrast essay? Making an outline is the first step that will lead you to an excellently written paper. Many students prefer starting writing an essay right after collecting the necessary information because they think it’s a waste of time to outline it. But it’s a huge mistake, as most of them fail to identify the most important details and structure a paper correctly. Organizing your ideas is an essential part of writing, and an outline is an effective tool that helps you figure out how your paper will look like. Besides, you’ll realize whether it’s necessary to add all the details you’ve collected during research.
A typical outline contains three parts:
1) Introduction. In this section, you’ll have not only to explain which objects you’re discussing in the next section but also to make the reader want to continue reading. In other words, you should use an effective attention grabber that will make the audience believe that your paper is interesting enough to dedicate some time to it. You can start with some surprising fact or example, a quotation from the source you used during research, a relevant joke, statistics, or a question. You can also use a persuasive argument and mention that you’re going to prove that the researched objects have more similarities than people think.
2) Body text. A number of paragraphs in this part will depend on the format you use and the aspects you’re planning to mention in your essay. You can pick a point by point format, Venne diagram, or block structure to present your thoughts in a compare and contrast essay. It means that you can estimate the same features that belong to two objects in one paragraph, draw a diagram, or dedicate one paragraph to one object. When crafting an outline, you can use bullet points or columns to write down the main common features and differences.
3) Conclusion. Although it’s the last part of your essay, it’s no less important than other sections. Final thoughts should be persuasive and demonstrate your confidence in the arguments you’ve used in your paper. Final words give you the last chance to impress the audience. You can name the main similarities and differences once again and finish your essay with a powerful statement, open question, or quote.
If the absence of ideas makes you feel desperate, don’t worry because it’s Ok to search for some examples. The truth is that everyone needs the inspiration to write a piece, and you can check online samples to get a few ideas. So, here are good compare and contrast essay examples that will awaken your creative muse:
When working on a compare and contrast essay, you might need a few tricks to express your thoughts and write a flawless piece. Use these tips to craft an excellent piece and get an “A” grade:
The success of your essay will depend on the objects you’ll choose for research. The main rule you have to keep in mind is connected with the common sphere the objects or phenomena come from. It will be a bad idea to compare the pope and a bartender or ducks and toys. For example, you can compare cats and dogs, two presidents, coffee and tea, movies and books, etc. It’s necessary to describe common features and characteristics that make objects differ from each other.
Making notes is a practical way to identify valuable details and refuse to use unnecessary ones. You can write two lists that will contain distinguishing features and similarities of objects. It will be your draft, so you can write down any idea that will cross your mind. Before starting composing an essay, you’ll check these lists and pick the most essential features. These points will form the core of your argument, and the entire essay will focus on these elements.
The outline will reflect your future essay structure and help you decide which ideas are worth your attention, so don’t refuse to dedicate a few minutes to craft it. You’ll only have to write down the most valuable points of each section – compare and contrast essay introduction, body text, and conclusion. For example, you can write what the core argument of your text in the introductory part is. The body text will contain a few paragraphs depending on a compare and contrast structure you select. You can write which features you’re going to describe in each section when creating an outline. The conclusion should contain around 5 sentences – they will support the main idea of your piece. Consider explaining why your arguments are important and naming the main features of objects.
Transitions will help you connect sentences and make your writing sound naturally. Using these words and phrases is the best way to guide a reader through one idea to another and get an excellent reading experience. Making the audience love your text is easy – you just have to remember these transitions, and include them in your compare contrast essay:
However, At the same time, Yet, On the contrary, But, Nevertheless, Though, After all, Similarly, Correspondingly, In the same way, Also, In addition, As well as, Moreover, Likewise, Again, In the same way, Together with.
After you’ve written a paper, it’s better to leave it for a while and start editing it in a few hours. This method will help you refocus and clear your mind before checking an essay. But you’ll have to read the text a few times to make sure that a professor won’t find an unexpected error. You can use online tools like Grammarly, Scribens, or Thesaurus to check grammar, get rid of typos, find punctuation mistakes, and improve your word choice. Asking someone to read your paper is also a nice decision because you’re probably tired by now, and chances are that you’ll miss some errors. Show your essay to your parents, roommate, or even a teacher. You need another pair of eyes to make sure your paper looks flawless.
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We’ve shared the most crucial details with you. Now, we hope that our guide will help you write an excellent compare and contrast essay. Of course, in the beginning, it may be hard to pick a good topic, identify key similarities and differences, describe the object features, and write a paper correctly. But you’ll succeed at writing essays after practicing, and it will be easier to impress a professor and get excellent grades. Besides, if you need assistance, you can rely on a decent writing service that will definitely provide you with top-notch papers.