American Dream essay can easily be compared to personal reflection paper that provides sufficient arguments regarding not only the term itself, but research and analysis that was conducted by essay writer. Most college and highschool students in the United States often feel stuck when it comes down to writing about what American Dream means to them as it is way too easy to use cliches and even risk academic integrity. Still, this essay type is important because it requires much more than reflective outlook, but knowledge of one’s country, culture, people, economics, history, and social processes. In our handy guide, we provide clearer definition, outline, topic examples, and sample of an actual American Dream paper.
Why is American Dream a Popular Essay Topic?
In order to understand what is the American Dream essay, one has to approach it as classic research paper. After all, no reader would like to see generic paper talking about wealth or living fine life in Land of the Free. Quite an opposite, American Dream essay aims to inspire high school and college students for additional research and analysis of their own lives and those who surround them. College professors use this type of work to see critical thinking skills, writing capabilities, structure, grammar, punctuation, and logic. Of course, content does matter as well, so it’s crucial to consider these tips before one starts writing:
- Decide on good and catchy topic that reflects your personality and proves to be an interesting, inspiring essay on the American Dream.
- Do additional research on family’s ancestry, traditions, cultural customs in the United States.
- Using hook sentence in the beginning, remember to start with an interesting fact or assumption about American style of life or something that has impacted you deeply.
- Avoid discussing sensitive and religious topics in such paper.
- Since American Dream essay is similar to argumentative essay, ensure to backup all information that is not common with reliable sources.
What makes American Dream writing assignments so popular is social connection between generations and difference in perception of same ideas related to culture, wealth, things that seem obligatory in life, right for education, and basic freedoms. Comparing views of modern American students to papers of past decades, college professors and Sociology researchers can combine information and track diverse socio-cultural trends.
Moreover, successful essays can also apply for scholarships or financial aid, according to college policies. Do best to provide unique topic and follow clear structure that is dynamic and logical.
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How to Structure an Essay on American Dream?
If good topic has already been found, it is right time to think about essay structure. In this particular case, it contains following elements:
- Introduction. Intro should always start with strong hook sentence, something that inspires readers to read further. Examples of good hook sentences are unusual facts, elements of history, culture or even stories from family life. Likewise, if you are an international student, mention it and speak of things learned.
- Thesis Statement. American Dream thesis should include clear position and speak of what topic means per se and how it is perceived. Nevertheless, it should not be generic like “I think it is money, having nice car, girlfriend, good grades at college...” Even if one truly thinks so, such paper aims for deeper thought and analysis as to why certain income is possible or why fancy car is important.
- 3-5 Body Paragraphs. Start each body paragraph with topic sentence. It means that once certain reason is given for justification of thesis, it should be mentioned right at paragraph’s start. Remember of plagiarism risks when citing external sources or mentioning recent media events. A rule of thumb here is to cite each source accordingly, based on format requirements. In most cases, students have freedom not to use any references, yet if good research has been made, it is obligatory to note it correctly.
- Conclusion. In this part, one has to summarize each idea mentioned in body paragraphs, but do it in condensed way, connecting each point with thesis statement. Do not introduce any new ideas here. For closure, it is recommended to create a call to action and provide food for thought, based on essay topic. It has to be either hopeful or demanding for justice, if paper is written in specific tone. In either case, conclusion is as important as thesis statement because it shows what author has argumented for with his or her work.
Here is American Dream essay outline example:
“4 Freedoms for All”
1. Intro. Roosevelt once said that there are 4 freedoms: freedom of speech and expression, freedom of religion, freedom from want, and freedom from fear. Thinking of what American Dream means to me, I base my life upon these four freedoms.
2. Thesis: My greatest wish is to achieve these important four freedoms not only for myself, but for people all over the world because freedom has to be shared and this is what I dream of.
3. Body Paragraphs. Topic sentences.
Freedom to express one’s thoughts and beliefs in the United States is what makes country so strong as different opinions work together…
Religion and faith conflicts lead to most armed conflicts these days, therefore, I wish that people learn on American example where people of different nations and cultures cooperate and live in peace.
Thinking of wealth and glory that most people usually name, writing such essays, I do not think it is what makes America great…
Determined and patient, I always try to get rid of fear and insecurity, turning to voluntary work and sports.
Thesis restated: America is so powerful as it does not keep its greatness and wisdom to themselves, but shares it with others, helps people achieve freedom and knowledge.
Call to action: It is important for each person to think of what can be done to make American life meaningful, based on hard work, knowledge, and mutual respect.
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10 Successful American Dream Essay Topics
A Sum of Cultures and Common Strengths. Speak of how different cultures and people make America strong and united.
Success is Always Hard Work. Focus on personal achievements, your family or friends who work hard to live successful lives.
Living Martin Luther King Way. Mention Martin Luther King or any other historical personality to speak of how strong leaders have made certain dreams come true.
Nursing for Entire World. Idea for international students, studying in the United States.
Thing of Past Gone. For negative thinkers. Include analysis and argumentation.
Power of Education. Focus on access to education and learning benefits.
America, My New Home. Suitable American Dream essay example for exchange students.
Peace and Safety For All. Mention global issues and how America helps to resolve them.
Then and Now: Comparison. Compare what American Dream meant to your parents or Grandparents and what it means to you.
Power to People. Think about how people can become an anticipated change.
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