8 Types of College Essays: The Ultimate Guide [UPD 2021]

This article describes 8 main types of college essays.

Even if you already have a topic for your essay, it may still not be enough for writing a good paper. Also, you need to clarify the type of essay you are supposed to write. Please make sure to define the kinds of essays your teachers want you to write before working on them.

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We’ve prepared an excellent guide on eight types of college essays for you! Here, you can find a detailed explanation of different types of essays. Also, enjoy excellent tips and get inspired for your paper! Let’s dive in!

📝 Types of College Essays: All You Need to Know

There are eight types of college essays that you should pay attention to. In this section, you can find useful guides for all types of essays. We’ve explained what each type is about. Also, you can find specific recommendations for all kinds of essays.

The picture contains a list of 8 college essay types.

Below you’ll find detailed descriptions of:

  • Descriptive essay
  • Analytical essay
  • Argumentative essay
  • Persuasive essay
  • Definition essay
  • Classification essay
  • Compare & contrast essay
  • Cause & effect essay

Descriptive Essay

You might be wondering what a descriptive essay is? And what is its purpose?

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A descriptive essay aims to describe the main traits of an obj ect, process, phenomenon, or something else.

The answer follows from its name: to describe the main traits of an object, process, phenomenon, or something else. When writing such an essay, you dive into an experience that you or another person had.

How to Write a Descriptive Essay?

In this section, we’ve prepared for you excellent tips! We believe they’ll help you to understand how to write a descriptive essay.

  1. Don’t be laconic. In writing a descriptive essay, you should apply imagination to create a particular feeling. Use all the five senses and add lots of details!
  2. Create an exact feeling! You should leave a potential reader with clear emotions. So, you need to plan what feelings you want to evoke.
  3. Use colorful and memorable language. Your central aim is to recall an experience and describe your feelings. Thus, you need to employ expressive language to get there.
  4. Take enough time for brainstorming. It is crucial when writing a descriptive essay. We recommend you to choose wisely adjectives and to think out what your aim is.

Analytical Essay

What is an analytical type of essay? This type of college essay implies that you critically analyze and evaluate a topic.

An analytical essay aims to provide an argument and then to support it by evidence.

The primary purpose of an analytical essay is to provide an argument and then to support it. You need to be able to interpret given information and to come to conclusions.

How to Write an Analytical Essay?

Let’s have a look at useful tips for this type of essay! We hope you find it helpful and get inspired to start writing.

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  1. Be clear and logical! It is essential when writing an analytical paper. You should remember the following structure: argument →evidence(s)
  2. Don’t forget to use linking words. It will help readers to follow your thoughts. And, thus, to understand the text better!
  3. Don’t confuse analytical essays with descriptive essays! The distinctive feature of an analytical essay is its focus on interpretation. In comparison, descriptive essays are summarizing existing information.
  4. Remember that your analytical essay should benefit the potential reader. Think about what you can bring and how it is best to clarify a subject.
  5. Don’t forget to add contrasting opinions. To make your essay more substantial, you should mention an alternative point of view. It will make your argument persuasive.

Argumentative Essay

Argumentative essays are probably the most typical types of college essays. You aim to persuade the potential reader by presenting and proving a point of view.

An argumentative essay aims to persuade the readers by presenting and proving a point of view.

In this type of essay, you take a position on the issue and argumentatively prove it.

How to Write an Argumentative Essay?

You might be wondering how to write an argumentative essay? In this section, we’ve prepared a few great tips for you. Let’s dive in!

  1. Evidence is key! For argumentative essays, evidential support is essential. You should include evidence that proves your point of view in each paragraph of the body.
  2. Your conclusion should support the thesis based on the evidence. In conclusion, it is vital to restate the thesis and support it with evidence.
  3. Research is significant! To produce distinct arguments, you need to spend enough time researching the topic. Your evidence can be based on factual, logical, statistical, or other data.
  4. An argumentative essay is a decent piece of writing. This type of essay implies thorough research. Besides, it is usually a relatively long paper.

Persuasive Essay

This is a type of essay involving discussion. Instead of giving informative facts and a general view, your task is to persuade your readers to accept your ideas. Writing this essay, you can manipulate readers’ emotions, using facts and logic.

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A persuasive essay aims to persuade the readers by using facts as well as emotions & personal ideas.

How to Write a Persuasive Essay?

Please have a look at the great tips we’ve prepared for you. Get inspired and start your persuasive essay! Let’s dive in!

  1. You need to persuade the readers that your opinion is viable. So, you need to think out how to make your ideas sound reasonable.
  2. Study an opposing point of view. If you aim at persuading readers, you should be well aware of an opposite opinion.
  3. Remember to use various persuasive techniques! It includes storytelling method, repetition, presenting opposing views, and call-to-action sentences.

4. You should demonstrate full confidence in your point of view and arguments. If you doubt your thesis, it is unlikely that the readers will take your side.

Definition Essay

When working on this kind of essay, you’re supposed to cover one specific term. Your primary role is to explain what exactly this term means. It is suitable to talk about the origins of the word and spheres of usage.

A definition essay aims to cover one specific term, explain its meaning and usage.

How to Write a Definition Essay?

You might be wondering what you should remember when writing such an essay? We’ve prepared for you several excellent tips! Get inspired and start writing!

  1. Define an object or phenomenon. You should choose something that might be interesting for the readers and valuable for you.
  2. The term should be complex and disputable. It is essential to write a distinct paper. Also, it brings value to the readers if the word is controversial.
  3. Add dictionary definition(s). By doing this, you make your paper more trustworthy. Also, you’ll have a good basis for developing your argument.
  4. Discuss the term’s origins. It will help you to tackle its complexity and make a strong argument.
  5. It will be best if the term is connected with your field of knowledge. It means you’re familiar with the subject and able to produce a strong definition paper.

Classification Essay

A classification essay is a kind of paper to sort things into different categories. It is helpful when analyzing the differences between objects. The classification must be clear, and each point should be linked to the following one.

A classification essay aims to sort things into different categories & analyze the differences between objects.

Your primary goal is to classify a group of objects according to a specific criterion.

How to Write a Classification Essay?

Let’s have a look at excellent tips for this type of essay! We hope you find it useful and start writing your paper. Let’s dive in!

  1. Take enough time to determine the categories for your paper. There shouldn’t be too many of them in your essay. However, it is essential to mention all the main categories.
  2. Make classification guided by a single principle. When you have a single principle for your classification, your paper follows some logic. It is important that your essay is decent.
  3. Don’t forget to provide examples! It is essential to make your categories even more clear. Good examples will ease understanding for your readers.
  4. Use signal phrases in your classification essay. They will help the readers to understand your text better. The phrases include the following:
    • It is classified according to
    • It is divided into
    • In this type of
    • It is categorized by the following principle.
    • It involves several kinds of

Compare & Contrast Essay

This type of comparison essay is similar to the last one. But writing a compare and contrast essay, one could seek differences in general categories and two specific subjects: people, companies, universities, political strategies, and so on.

A compare & contrast essay seeks differences between several (usually two) categories of subjects.

Your primary goal is to discuss the main similarities and differences between the given objects.

How to Write a Compare & Contrast Essay?

You might be asking yourself what you should pay attention to when writing such an essay? In this section, we’ve prepared for you several beautiful tips! Get inspired and start writing your paper!

  1. You can compare and contrast different things/people. It can be:
    • Historical events
    • Concepts, ideas, or theories
    • Books, art objects, etc.
    • People
  1. Concentrate on particular similarities and differences. You will probably find lots of things to talk about. However, you should decide what is the most important for your paper.
  2. Use signal words to structure your text. It includes the following:
    • In the same way
    • In common
    • As well as
    • Compared to
    • Despite
    • Even though
    • Not alike
    • In contrast
    • Although

Cause & Effect Essay

Your primary goal here is to explain what factors lead to what results and why.

You may discuss one cause and several effects, or one effect and several causes. This kind of essay is perfect for ecological and political topics.

A cause & effect essay explains what factors lead to what results and why.

Your paper can be focused more on the cause or effect side. It depends on the topic you choose.

How to Write A Cause & Effect Essay?

You might be wondering how to write a cause and effect essay? In this section, we’ve prepared a few excellent tips for you. We hope you’ll get inspired and start with your paper. Let’s dive in!

  1. Don’t forget to check your essay for logic. Ask yourself: is it a cause or an effect? Can my arguments be called sufficient?
  2. Use transitions and connectors in your essay. It will make it sound better and will ease the text for the readers. Let’s have a look at examples:
    • For this reason
    • On account of
    • Consequently
    • Because of
    • In addition to
    • As a result
    • Therefore
    • Due to
    • This means that
  3. Choose the following logic: a phenomenon ← main causes. You should focus on a chosen phenomenon, event, or anything you decide. Then you should look at causes that lead to this particular event.

📑 Types of College Essays: 3 Extra Types for You

We’ve prepared three additional types of college essays for you! Hope you find it helpful! Let’s have a look together!

Application Essay

Your central aim is to explain why you should be admitted to the particular college application essay. Usually, you write around a 500-word essay where you should be clear and persuasive.

How to Write an Application Essay?

Here you’ll find useful tips that will help you to create an excellent piece of writing!

  1. Think about why you want to get into college. It is essential, as being honest to yourself is critical for writing a great application essay.
  2. Think about how you can benefit the college. Why are you a good candidature? What can you bring? What are your strengths?
  3. Create an excellent intro! Your introduction should be compelling and catch the attention. It should be unique!
  4. Don’t forget to stick to a plan! Before starting to write, you should create an outline. It is essential to follow your plan that your essay remains clear.
  5. Support your story with examples. For this type of essay, real-life examples are key. They will allow admissions officers to feel your story.

Personal Essay

This type of essay implies that you share an important or even a life-changing story. You write about your experience and the life lessons it brought to you. Personal essays can be written for different purposes. In college, you might often get this task to practice your writing skills.

How to Write A Personal Essay?

Keep in mind these excellent tips! We hope that you get inspired and start your paper. Let’s have a look!

  1. Create an outline. It is essential for you, as it helps to stay focused and ease the writing process. Also, you’ll not forget anything you wanted to mention.
  2. Don’t forget to include what you’ve learned from the experience! It is something that the potential reader is interested in reading about.
  3. Share your emotions. A personal essay should have your emotions you want to share with the readers.
  4. Try to make your story beneficial for the potential reader. For instance, you might pose a rhetorical question. It can make readers think about your experience in a personal context.

Scholarship Essay

Your scholarship essay aims at persuading that you are the one deserving the scholarship. You should tell about your strengths, achievements, and other things you’re proud of.

How to Write A Scholarship Essay?

Pay attention to these excellent tips when writing your paper. Get inspired and start your scholarship essay! Let’s dive in!

  • Be personal. Your story should be worth remembering. It is key to getting a scholarship.
  • Be attentive: proofread! It is clear that in your scholarship essay, there is no room for spelling or grammar mistakes.
  • Ask for feedback. Share your essay with friends or family and listen to their advice. It might help you to understand how your essay sounds.
  • Read the scholarship essay instructions carefully. Don’t forget to check the number of words you need to write, the deadline, and other details.

As you can see, there are lots of different types of college essays! But don’t worry! We are here to help you understand all the details. If you still have questions in mind, please comment below.

🔗 References

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