Irrespective of your line of study, essay writing
is a must have skill, especially if you are a College or a University student. Contrary to the popular belief, essay writing is not an in-built skill; in fact, you must learn and practice to come up with impressive essays.
While writing an essay, you must present ideas and arguments in an organized and lucid manner, thus ensuring that the readers are not confused by the information. Before you determine on the right essay method for yourself, you must understand the difference between the various methods of essay writing:
A narrative essay tells a story, throwing light on the events exactly in the order in which they happened. In a narration essay, the topic sentence plays a significant role, as it prepares readers for the story. However, one must not mistake a narrative essay for a mere chronological record of events or happenings. An impressive narration, almost unfailingly, will have interesting elements such as drama and tension. It helps to understand that the primary intention of a narrative essay is not to inform, but to entertain and engage the readers. While writing a narrative essay, you must present your personal point of view and hence write it in the first person. Some examples of narrative essays are 'A Trip to Disneyland', 'My Worst Nightmare' and 'My First Job Experience'.
A process essay intends to help readers with an explanation on how to do something; it can also be written to explain how something functions or works. For writing a process essay
, you need not limit yourself to physical topics such as building a playhouse or installing a water heater. On the contrary, you can determine on interesting topics such as how to revive romance in your married life or how to prepare for your practical exams. While writing a process essay, you must take care to include all the information that the reader might find useful while following your directions. Process essays should be written in the second person and students should avoid mundane topic such as how to tie shoelaces or how to bake a pie, especially as these topics are very unlikely to excite the readers.
This writing method is used extensively in textbooks; classification essays are written with an intention to help readers with an insight into the subject by classifying into relevant categories. The best way to write a classification essay is to divide the subject into at least three discrete groups. Some examples of classification essays are types of parenting styles and types of dogs that can be show dogs.
Contrary to the popular belief, classification and division are not the same method of writing. In definition essay, the writer explains a topic/subject by dividing it into important parts. An example of a division essay is the qualities of an ideal friend; in this essay, the characteristics of an ideal friend should be listed. Once you have listed and defined the crucial parts, you have a basic structure laid out for your essay.
Comparison and Contrast
As the name suggests, this method of writing intends to explain by comparing and contrasting two subjects. By comparing, the writer helps the readers evaluate and analyze the pros and cons, strengths and weaknesses or advantages and disadvantages of the two subjects. An example of comparison and contrast essay is 'are electric essays worth the price?'
Cause and Effect
In this method of writing, the writer not only explains the causes of an event or happening, but also describes its effects, results or consequences. In this method, it is best to begin with the causes and the gradually describe the causes; in any case, your essay should focus primarily on either the cause or the effect
, and not both.
A description essay helps readers with a clear impression of something, thus defining and describing a person, place, thing or situation. Students should not mistake it for narrative method of writing, as description method does not tell a story as a narrative essay. While employing this method of essay writing, students should try and use words and phrases that describe sceneries, sounds, smells and emotions, thus helping readers to feel and see the objects through the writer's choice of words.
In this method of essay writing, the writer attempts to convince the reader to accept his/her point of view on the chosen subject. The best way to write an essay using this method is to take a stand on a specific topic and then help the readers with supporting evidences so that it is easier for them to accept your point of view on the topic.
The Best Method of Essay Writing
Now that you have a clear understanding of the different types of essay writing methods, it should be easier for you to determine on a method that best suits your writing style, personality and the topic that you want to write on. There is no hard and fast rule that you have to choose a single essay writing method as you can even integrate two or three different writing methods in your essay. For instance, if you are writing an essay on a vacation or picnic spot, then you can use narration, example, description, classification as well as compare and contrast in your essay to make it an enjoyable read for your audience. However, before you determine on a particular method of writing, it is best to spend some time on deciding what you want to convey to your readers and then determine on essay writing methods that will help you present your ideas effectively. Students, to organize their ideas and to effectively present their ideas, should leverage these writing methods.
Most instructors do not specify the method or type of essay while giving an essay writing assignment. In such cases, students can choose two or three essay writing types in their essay to present ideas effectively; however, if an assignment or coursework requires you to use only one method of essay writing, then you should cautiously stick that specific method of writing.