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How to Write a Compare and Contrast Essay Outline

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❶The introductory paragraph should engage readers and encourage them to continue reading, for this reason it is important to focus on a key fact about one of the subjects being compared or to ask a question that will be answered in the body or conclusion of the essay.

What does contrast mean? What about compare?

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TIP 1: Brainstorm on a contrast essay topic
TIP 2: Choose an appropriate structure for a contrast paper

Here is one way to organize the body of this paper, addressing points A, B, and C for each subject. This paper will follow parallel order—A, B, and then C—for each subject:. Lee's underlying aspiration C. For a shorter paper, the above might represent three paragraphs; if you are writing a long paper and have a great deal of information, you may choose to write about each point, A, B, and C, in separate paragraphs for a total of six. However you decide to organize, make sure it is clear why you are examining this subject.

You might be able to compare apples and oranges, for example, but why would you? Include any insights or opinions you have gathered. And yes, in general, three is the magic number. While there is no hard-and-fast rule that precludes creating a paper based on two points, or four, or five, a three-point discussion is manageable, especially for complex or abstract subjects. At the same time, a three-point structure helps you avoid oversimplifying, especially when addressing controversial topics in which discussions tend to become polarized—right or wrong, black or white, for or against.

Three-point treatments encourage discussion of the middle ground. Signaling transitions Learn to use expressions that precisely convey contrast or comparison. These expressions, or transitions, signal contrast:. Signal words such as these help the reader understand the relationships between your sentences, paragraphs, and ideas. In particular, if you are both comparing and contrasting, signal words help sort out what's what.

This paper will follow parallel order—A, B, and then C—for each subject: Lee's underlying aspirations A. Grant's underlying aspirations However, here is another way to organize the same paper: Grant's underlying aspiration For a shorter paper, the above might represent three paragraphs; if you are writing a long paper and have a great deal of information, you may choose to write about each point, A, B, and C, in separate paragraphs for a total of six.

These expressions, or transitions, signal contrast: The context will vary depending on the nature of the essay. For example, you may be asked to compare and contrast:. To seek out the differences in two or more subjects. To seek out similarities in two or more subjects. In fact, the actual objective is to explore how the chosen issues or ideas are similar and what makes them different from each other.

Discuss how the first point relates to or differs from topic A and topic B. Discuss how the second point relates or differs from topic A and topic B. Compare and contrast papers are most commonly seen in secondary and post-secondary classrooms and, in many circumstances, the assignment instructions will clearly outline the topics or ideas that need to be compared.

However, in the event that it does not, you may be asked to create a basis for comparison on a subject of your choosing. If you are asked to come up with a topic, it is important the subjects be comparable so that you are capable of clearly articulating the differences and the similarities between each.

For example, you would be hard pressed to compare Christmas Trees to Easter Hams. Save for being centered on the holidays, the two have very little in common. Apple Trees and Oak Trees, albeit not very interesting subjects, are comparable. After having settled on the items for comparison, it is necessary to think methodically about how the items relate to one another and how they may differ and to create a list that clearly outlines your findings.

For example, you may determine that the fruit of the apple tree can be harvested to create food whereas the wood of the oak tree can be harvested to create shelter. Both trees provide shade. However, it should consist of enough similarities and differences to aid you in creating an initial starting point and help you to formulate essay ideas.

We have created a Plagiarism Checker for Teachers. Feel free to use it! Search our giant database of original essays classified by topic. The thesis statement should be reflective of your findings. The key word here…is NEW! Some instructors prefer that you only write about the differences between two things, while others want you to focus on explaining the similarities as well.

Either way, you'll need to make sure that your thesis statement reflects your instructor's expectations. Sample thesis statement for contrast paper: In terms of social networking sites, Facebook focuses on presenting your daily life to others, whereas MySpace allows you to focus more on demonstrating your personal style. While both Facebook and MySpace allow you to meet other users who have similar interests, only MySpace allows you to demonstrate your personal style.

It would be better to write about how sensitive both horses and cats are to human needs and emotions. You could also suggest that though both basketball and football require a lot of teamwork, basketball players are expected to be a lot more versatile than football players.

Why Is It Essential To Have An Organized And Clear Outline For Your Compare And Contrast Essay?

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Using comparison/contrast for all kinds of writing projects. Sometimes you may want to use comparison/contrast techniques in your own pre-writing work to get ideas that you can later use for an argument, even if comparison/contrast isn’t an official requirement for the paper you’re writing.

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A contrast essay is not as complicated as you think. It is about comparing and contrasting two subjects, talking about how such things are .

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To write a good compare-and-contrast paper, you must take your raw data—the similarities and differences you've observed—and make them cohere into a meaningful argument. Here are the five elements required. The compare and contrast essay, also called the comparison and contrast essay, requires the writer to compare the differences and similarities between two or more items. The context will vary depending on the nature of the essay.

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A comparison and contrast essay dissects two related ideas. Like any essay, this paper needs a clear thesis, but the body focuses on specific traits that are similar or comparable, and different or contrasting, between the two ideas. How to Write a Compare and Contrast Essay Outline: A Point-By-Point Organization By point-by-point, we merely mean a comparison that concentrates on comparing and contrasting one factor in both subjects, and all at the same time!