Short Essay Format

Short Essay Format

“Brevity is the sister of talent,” wrote the Russian author Anton Chekhov. True, it can be more difficult to say the gist of what you know in just a few concise words, rather that using skyscrapers of sentences to express that one idea. This type of essay usually does not mean less research, it might actually mean more work, as cutting away the inessential can require more time and effort from students. Although typical short essays are no longer than half a page (one or two pages max), it can be a good way for your professor to find out the essence of your understanding of the subject at first sight. It will also take him less time to read short essays, which is helpful in case of a bigger class.

How to Write a Short Essay

The short essay outline format is the same as that of a typical paper, nothing new here.

Introduction should include an attention getter, some information about the purpose of your essay and a thesis, which is a one-sentence expression of your essay’s main idea. Just like planets orbit around the sun, so do all other points orbit around the main point. “To be, or not to be: that is the question.” This widely famous Shakespearean quote is a wonderful example of the thesis in Hamlet’s soliloquy. (How could I not have noticed this blindingly obvious fact earlier???) Now that I think about it, his speech might well be a nice short essay example.

As a rule, the average number of paragraphs in a short paper is five – one for introduction, one for conclusions and three for the body. Each new body paragraph should provide new ideas to support the thesis.

Conclusion is the final part of the short essay outline. It brings together all previous paragraphs and says a few words about why the topic is important.

Now that you have seen another answer to the question how to write a short essay, let us conclude this article. Although short, they are still essays, and such papers can be a powerful way of expressing opinions, conveying ideas, reviewing information and, believe it or not, influencing the course of history. The most vivid example of the last statement are Shakespeare’s immortal lines, which to this date are required to be read in acting contests throughout the world.

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