The Basic Essay
Title (centered or on the left)
(all words are capitalized, except articles and prepositions)
(The title tells the reader what you are going to say.)
Introduction (first paragraph, indented five spaces)
(The introduction tells the reader what you are going to say and gives a quick list of the topics you are going to cover.)
Body (several paragraphs, each indented five spaces)
(The body has one paragraph for each of the topics that you listed in the introduction. Each paragraph begins with the topic sentence. The rest of the paragraph explains or proves the topic sentence.)
Conclusion (last paragraph, indented five spaces)
(The conclusion repeats the introduction.)
Example of a basic essay: (It would pass ESL097, maybe not ESL098.)
Mass Transportation in New York Is Fast and Convenient
Mass transportation is very fast, cheap and convenient in New York City. The subways take you almost anywhere you want to go very quickly. Buses run very often and go places that subways don't. The MTA lets you change between buses and subways for free.
Subways take you anywhere you want to go very quickly. They don't get stuck in traffic like taxis and buses. They go almost everywhere inside the five boroughs.
Buses run very often and go places that subways don't. They go to neighborhoods that don't have subway service, especially in eastern Queens and on Staten Island.
The MTA lets you change between buses and subways for free. The fare of $1.50 is very cheap. You can go from the Bronx to Rockaway Beach on the subway, or you can go from southern Staten Island to Jamaica, Queens with a subway and bus combination. In either case, the fare is just $1.50.
In conclusion, mass transportation is very fast, cheap and convenient in New York City. I like it very much. (172 words)
The essay on page one is all right for children. When students are learning to write for the first time, we often give them this format to follow, usually a five-paragraph essay, with three paragraphs in the body. However, for more advanced writers, including college students, this kind of essay is not sophisticated enough to pass college-level English courses.
The general concept of presenting an introduction, conclusion and body with supporting examples remains the same, but here are some suggestions for a more sophisticated essay:
The title often gives the reader an idea of what you will talk about, but not always the final conclusion. Sometimes a title is in the form of a question or a phrase of a few words. Introduction
The introduction should give an idea of what you are going to talk about, but you don't need to list each topic that you are going to discuss in your essay. Furthermore, you don't have to reveal exactly what you are promising to discuss, but you should LET THE READER KNOW MORE OR LESS WHAT OPINION YOU ARE GOING TO PRESENT. This can be done creatively, with a personal anecdote, a specific story from the news, a group of questions, or anything else that will give the reader a feeling for what will follow. Body
The paragraphs should each be about one topic, but it isn't necessary to start the paragraph with the topic sentence. A topic sentence (the main idea of the whole paragraph) can appear anywhere in the paragraph. Paragraphs should have SPECIFIC DETAILS, not just general statements, and they must be CLEARLY ABOUT ONE AREA. Sometimes one area has different elements which can be broken down into separate paragraphs. If a paragraph is long, it can probably be broken down into smaller ones. Paragraphs can be short, even a few sentences. Conclusion
A conclusion shouldn't end with phrases like "In conclusion" or "To summarize." The conclusion should not be a simple repetition of the introduction. It should ADD SOMETHING NEW, often a larger philosophy, or a question or new problem that might need further discussion, or a...
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