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Constructing an Essay
In an essay, your writing should be coherent.

Constructing an Essay

Formulating a thesis is a vital part of constructing an essay. Essay writing is a skill which can be learned, practised and improved. In addition to this general quiz, try our quizzes on specific aspects of essay writing, such as writing a conclusion, writing an introduction, constructing an argument and writing about literature.

This quiz is a good introduction to the mechanics of essay writing.

Besides reading the text, what is the first thing you should do when writing an essay?
Plan the conclusion
Make sure you understand the question
Decide what your argument will be
Write your first sentence
Always read the question carefully to make sure you have understood it correctly. It can be helpful to underline key words, too
Your answer to the question is called your...
Your thesis is your main point. It must answer the essay question
How many paragraphs should you plan to write?
A paragraph for each point, plus one each for the introduction and the conclusion
Seven paragraphs exactly
As few paragraphs as possible
As many paragraphs as possible
Seven paragraphs is actually a perfectly decent length for an essay, but the number of paragraphs is dictated by the number of points which you plan to make (and you wouldn't skip the planning stage, would you?)
Which of the following is true?
There is only one correct answer to an essay question
The answer to an essay question is always an opinion supported with evidence
The answer to an essay question is always a fact supported with evidence
There are no wrong answers to an essay question
Wrong answers do exist. Texts can support many varying interpretations, but they are not endlessly adaptable and it is possible to have an interpretation which just cannot be supported by the text
What does it mean to support your argument?
You must annotate your essay with proof that your argument is correct
You must give the opposing view
You must provide evidence from the text and show how it upholds your argument
You must provide a list of everyone who agrees with your argument
Evidence includes quotations and other references to the text (i.e. to characters, themes, scenes, events, etc.)
Which of the following is NOT one of the advantages of planning your essay?
Planning improves the essay's structure
Planning ensures that your essay will make sense
Planning will guarantee your essay receives an A
Planning ensures you fully answer the question
Failing to plan an essay will nearly always lead to a poor piece of writing
You should answer the essay question in...
the footnotes
your next-to-last paragraph
your introductory paragraph
You should always answer the essay question in your first paragraph - the rest of the essay builds an argument to justify your answer
An effective essay structure depends on...
thoughtful planning
the use of connectives and phrases which link paragraphs together
a logical argument
All of the above
After you finish writing an essay, you should...
proofread it
hand it in immediately
tear it up and start again
lose it
It's so easy to make mistakes when writing, probably because writers edit themselves continually. Always check for mistakes
Your writing should be coherent. What does this mean?
It should be clear and logical
It should be exciting
It should be aggressive in order to prove your point
It should sound pretentious
You can find more about this topic by visiting BBC Bitesize - Organising information and ideas

Author:  Sheri Smith

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