Compare and Contrast Essay: Everything You Need To Know
A compare and contrast essay is one of the most common forms of essays that students are usually asked to write during their semester. You may have to compare and contrast two different kinds of novels or pets from the same historical period. You may also be asked to compare and contrast two different aspects of one topic. All in all, writing a compare and contrast essay is no easy feat.
Therefore, here is a quick guide for you to learn how to write a compare and contrast essay with examples. Follow the tips carefully and hopefully; you will be able to write your paper easily. But, before the tips, it is important to know what a compare and contrast essay exactly is.
What is a compare and contrast essay?
This essay evaluates the similarities and differences between the two subjects. The subjects can be from the same category, or they can also be from different categories. Professors can ask you to compare two problems, events or objects and you need to evaluate their similarities and difficulties.
At times, students are unable to understand if they have been asked to write a compare and contrast essay. In that case, you must always look out for these process words in your essay topic. These words indicate that you need to write a compare and contrast essay.
Now that you know what a compare and contrast essay is, let’s check out the steps for writing this type of essay.
How To Write A Compare And Contrast Essay?
Remember that a compare and contrast essay is all about how two things are similar, different or similar in some ways and different in others. Take a look at other compare and contrast essay examples to understand the tips discussed below even better.
- Pick a subject
It is always better to choose two different subjects from the same ballpark. This will help you write your paper efficiently. Say you want to write an essay related to food habits. In that case, you can choose to compare and contrast ‘vegans vs meat-eaters.’
Similarly, if you want to write about historical figures, choose two artists to compare or two historians. It should never be an artist versus a historian.
- Note down the similarities and differences
This is the most important step since it will determine the overall structure of your paper. You can create a Venn Diagram to highlight the similarities and differences between the two subjects. Write the differences in the separate space and similarities in the overlapping space. Say you have been asked to compare and contrast humans and persons.
- Organize your paper
There are two methods you can follow to organize your compare and contrast essay. The two methods are Point-by-Point and Block.
Students usually use this technique to organize the compare and contrast essay. You need to mention alternate arguments about the two things that you are comparing and contrasting. The pattern is:
Discuss point 1 related to A
Discuss point 1 related to B
Highlight the overall links between A and B
Discuss point 2 related to A
Discuss point 2 related to B
Highlight the overall links between A and B
In this method, you need to present all the arguments of A, followed by all the arguments of B. The pattern is:
Point 1 about A
Point 2 about A
Point 1 about B (along with connections to A)
Point 2 about B (along with connections to A)
- Create an outline
The compare and contrast essay outline will make it easier for you actually to write the paper. Make sure your essay consists of the following elements:
- An introductory paragraph- Mention only the most important facts about both the subjects in this section. Also, do not forget to state the importance of the comparison that you intend to do in the rest of the paper.
- At least four body paragraphs(2 for each subject of comparison and contrast)- This is where you need to discuss the facts about your subjects. Use supporting evidence to make the essay credible.
- Conclusion- Briefly summarise the crucial points of your essay in this section. Do not include any new details in the conclusion since that may confuse your readers.
- Write the essay
Use the tips discussed above to start writing the paper finally. Embrace the method as per your convenience and complete the essay easily. Here is an image of what your compare and contrast essay will look like if you follow the Point-by-Point method.
Writing a compare and contrast essay is quite difficult, especially if you have to write in a tight deadline. But don't worry. Implement the tips and nail the essay like a pro. If you are confused about the essay topic to choose, get help from your supervisors or seniors. Good Luck!