How to compose a good compare and contrast essay

A common essay many students write is the Comparison or Contrast. In this essay you are typically asked to compare or contrast one thing with something else. You can compare the things that are similar or contrast the things that are different. For example, you could write about how high school and college are the same but you could also write about how high school and college are different. We use comparison and contrast in other cases each and every day, and when you realize this, it can be easier to write the essay. We compare and contrast things all the time when we have to make a decision about something: a college to attend, what job to take, where to move, what car to buy, where to live, and who we want to date.

When you begin to work on the comparing and contrasting types of essays, there are two basic ways you can organize your paper. One is commonly known as block  style and the other is usually referred to as point-by-point. With block style you focus on one side of the comparison or contrast and talk all about that before moving on to the other side. For example, if you are comparing college to high school, with block organization style you would start with one, say high school and talk all about it. Then you would move on to college and talk all about that. If you decide to go with a point-by-point style you would focus on the individual similarities between the two. So you would talk about how they both have schedules, then talk about the classes both have, and move on to how they both have instructors and so on and so forth.

Regardless of the style you write in- block or point-by-point you will end up with four paragraphs. Your essay will start with the standard introduction paragraph that introduces your two topics and lets the reader know if you are going to be comparing or contrasting them. Then you will come to the two body paragraphs that talk about your similarities or differences in regards to the topics you are writing about. The essay will end with the standard conclusion paragraph that summarizes the points you have made and ends with a definitive statement about the similarities or differences you have been talking about.

This is a very common type of essay that many students end up writing at some point in the academic career. So knowing the basic ways you can structure your comparison and contrast essay can go a long way in making it an easier and more enjoyable experience for you.

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