How to write a comparative essay

The word “compare” assumes focusing on how things are alike and how they are different. That is why a comparative paper is also called a compare and contrast essay. If you have a task to write a comparative essay, it means you are going to tell about similarities and differences between two notions. In this type of an essay you normally compare:

  • People or objects
  • Events
  • Theories or positions
  • Texts
  • Figures

Some assignments offer exactly what you have to compare while some tasks expect that you will come up with a basis for comparison yourself. Once you decide on the things to compare, start brainstorming ideas for the body of the essay.

Organizing ideas

The easiest way to organise your ideas in a proper way is to use a Venn diagram. Think critically on the ideas and provide them with enough similarities and differences. After they are listed in the grid, make the outline of the paper.

Once you have organised your ideas, get down to the introduction. First, introduce the topic in the way so that it hooks the audience. Second, try hard to produce a thesis statement. A solid thesis is often a challenge to many students. However, it will work out all right if for a comparative essay you will choose the following strategy: identify the relative weight of similarities and differences by asking if the similarities outweigh the differences or vice versa. Create the thesis according to these weights.

You are allowed to arrange your ideas in the order you choose. Predominately, there are two methods to sequence the ideas in a comparative essay:

  • Alternative (point-by-point pattern): first you write about what two subjects (A and B) have in common, and then alternate between them. Juxtaposing the ideas about two subjects is an easy and simple way to produce a good comparison. However, you should clearly identify the related options between A and B or this technique will prove to be un-efficient.
  • Block (subject-by-subject pattern): the first part of the essay (second paragraph of the body) discusses subject A while the second half of the paper (third paragraph of the body) describes subject B. Keep in mind that in the B block you should refer to the A one to provide a clear comparison. Your professor will appreciate it if you use this method as in this way you show your high-level critical skills and the ability to make things cohesive.

If you have already fixed upon the method of comparing things, decide how many paragraphs you will write. There are not strict options for a number of paragraphs in a comparative essay. Everything depends on the topic, the choice of a pattern, and the length of the paper. It is up to you How to write a comparative essay in the smoothest way.

One crucial thing as to the structure is to follow a basic framework for a paragraph. To do this, use The TEEL format:

  • T – Start with a topic sentence
  • E – Explain. Provide the ideas with the facts.
  • E – Evidence. Support the fact. Give examples in the form of quotes, a short story, statistics, etc.
  • L – Link. It is a sentence that tells how the whole paragraph supports the initial standpoint. Begin a link with such transition words as: due to this, thus, therefore and like that.

To conclude a comparative essay, concisely summarise everything you have said in the body paragraphs. Write a concluding sentence so that it will refer to the thesis statement.

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We do hope that you will follow these guidelines closely if it is your first compare and contrast essay. However, there are papers that require huge efforts and a big writing talent to meet all challenges. If it happens that you still cannot figure out How to write a comparative essay, our writing service will prepare a perfect paper for you.