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How To Write A Compare And Contrast Essay

07 Oct 2016

It is a common fact that essay writing develops skills of analytical thinking. An educated person must be able to see distinctive and similar features within various phenomena, whether they are in art, history or literature. That is why such type of writing as compare and contrast essay is a frequent assignment for students both at school and at the college.

The first thing that writer must know if he wants to learn how to write a compare and contrast essay is that his aim is to define why individual and related features matter. Because, through the comparison, people aim to find correspondences and patterns concerning specific issue. So, look how to start a compare and contrast essay and learn all the specifics of its structure.

Start from the brainstorm

You have two objects. And a mess in your head.  At the beginning, it is a tough task to reflect all the ideas within the academic format of writing. Start with notes about basic features that come to your head when you think about required for the comparison objects. For example, you must compare Homer Simpson with Ned Flanders. Write down all the associations from your conscience and organize them in graphic form. It could be two circles that meet in the center where in the each circle itself you can give specific information for the each of the objects and in the center where figures meet write facts that are similar. Then make an outline of the paper using a template.

Define criteria for the comparison

What are the basic principles of comparison? Everyone can get acquainted with them in compare and essay examples. It could be color, character, actions in which objects are engaged. Bear in mind that these criteria must be relevant to the matter of your comparison. For instance, the fact that both Ned and Homer are yellow colored tells about nothing. However, if we take into account religious views of these characters, we can conclude that Simpson is atheistic when Flanders believes in God and if effects on the way they raise their children. So, be sure the use of chosen criteria will lead to comprehensible conclusions and that they apply to both items.

Read also: how to find my essay writer

Take into account specific main body structure

The classic method to organize main body is to divide it into three paragraphs (according to 5 paragraph structure). However, when you write compare and contrast essay you may neglect this rule because the number of parts depends on the number of the criteria. So, firstly, follow the guidelines of your teacher to prevent your paper from fail. It is convenient to organize ideas in the main body in such ways:

● Block method (describe all the similar peculiarities between phenomena in the first paragraph and the distinctive features in the second body paragraph)

● Point by point (in each paragraph dwell on features of both objects according to the specific criteria)

From the first sight this structure seems to be complicated, so before you start working on compare and contrast essay look at the samples.


In the conclusion of every type of essay, the essay writer must restate the thesis statement and synthesize main points with closing remarks. Here you must show how defined similarities and differences matter and to which assumptions they may lead.


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