A theme essay is always structured around a theme predetermined by its statement. Writing a quality essay should be broken down into three stages: preparation, writing, and proofreading.
Our advice is general and varies according to the countries of the Francophonie. You can discuss it in our discussion thread!
Part 1 of 3: Prepare
Step 1. Identify the theme
Read the statement of duty carefully. In general, the theme will be clearly determined. Even if it doesn't, it should be relatively easy to identify.
- Quite often the theme is the first common name you find in the utterance.
For example, a statement might begin with: “Mood disorders are among the most misunderstood mental illnesses. With this sentence it is easy to determine the topic of the essay, ie "mood disorders"
- Sometimes, however, the topic of the essay is not spelled out as clearly. In this case, we can try to identify the theme by summarizing the first sentence in one or two words.
For example, a statement might begin with, "In the field of psychology, diseases that affect an individual's ability to control their mood and maintain healthy responses to an emotional stimulus are some of the most difficult to understand. "Even if" mood disorders "is not written in black and white, it is indeed the subject addressed in this sentence and therefore surely, the theme that you will have to deal with
Step 2. Identify each task
These “tasks” represent the essential elements that you will need to cover in your essay. This could be how many examples you will need to give, or how you will analyze those examples in your essay.
- Sometimes the statement may ask you for a number of examples or even a single example.
- For each example, you may need to cite a number of facts, incidents, or other information. The number of references you should use can also be specified by the statement.
- If the statement does not identify a specific task, write down all the questions you will need to answer to address the topic requested. These questions will be your tasks.
Step 3. Develop Possibilities
Often you can find more than one example to deal with the topic. These examples can sometimes be specified in the statement. Even if it isn't, you need to find a list of examples to use.
Below the statement, you may find some avenues to explore in your essay. Where appropriate, draw inspiration from the topics covered in class. Most of the time, an essay is an assessment tool for your teacher. He therefore wants you to deal with a subject studied in class, in order to assess your understanding of this subject
Step 4. Choose an example
Reread the list of possible examples. Pick the one that inspires you the most for your essay. If more than one example is requested, find enough to meet the requirements of the statement.
The statement may also ask you to deal with a controversy relating to the subject. You will then have to determine on which side of this controversy you want to place yourself, before choosing the examples that will illustrate the point of view you are going to defend
Step 5. Process each task according to the example you have chosen
Write your example, then reread the tasks you need to complete. Briefly write down a few details for each example, in order to complete all of the tasks determined by the statement.
You can use a board to organize your ideas. List all the tasks in a column of the table. In the column next to it, make some notes to see how your example can accomplish each of these tasks
Step 6. Develop your problem
This is a sentence that sums up your entire essay. This issue should be stated in your introduction and above all, it should be demonstrated through your essay.
- Your problem must take up the theme, as well as the example (s) of your choice. If the subject deals with a controversy, the issue must explain which side you are going to defend.
- If we take the example of mood disorders, the problem could be articulated as follows: “Clinical depression is a mental illness that affects a lot of people, but few people really understand it. "
Part 2 of 3: Writing the Essay
Step 1. Write your introduction
Your first paragraph (the introduction) should talk about the topic and introduce your problem.
- The key is to say what your essay will explain or demonstrate, without repeating the elements of the statement.
- For presentations that deal with a character, an event or a work, you should of course mention it in the introduction.
- Usually, the problem is at the end of the introduction. However, in some cases it is possible to put it at the beginning.
Step 2. Expand your ideas into paragraphs
Build each paragraph around an important element of your problem. Be sure to complete each of the tasks in the statement.
- The number of paragraphs may vary from essay to essay, but if you are asked for a three-part outline, it will require three paragraphs (apart from the introduction and conclusion). Even if the number of paragraphs is not specified in the statement, it is strongly recommended not to write less than three paragraphs.
- The first sentence of each paragraph should summarize an important part of the issue. The rest of the paragraph should expand and support this first sentence.
- There are times when you can use your course content. You can do this by summarizing, paraphrasing, using specific detail or a direct quote.
- Refer to your prep work, to help you complete each task. This work will help you keep the content of your paragraphs flowing.
Step 3. Summarize your work in the conclusion
Your conclusion should repeat or rephrase your issue, briefly summarizing how that issue responds to the theme.
- Your conclusion should also summarize your most important arguments or if not, it should bring a conclusion to the controversy you have been discussing.
- Your conclusion should not contain new information.
Part 3 of 3: proofread the text
Step 1. Review your essay
Check the quality of its content, but above all, spot spelling and grammar mistakes.
- Spelling and grammar mistakes can be corrected immediately, but content issues should be picked up later.
- Other issues to look out for may be content or reading issues. Content issues arise if the essay does not address the topic, tasks, or issue satisfactorily. As for reading problems, they can be manifested by awkward transitions between each paragraph, by heavy or incomprehensible syntax or by inappropriate or poor quality vocabulary. When you come across a problem like this, point it out so you can come back to it later when rewriting.
Step 2. Check that your essay meets the theme and tasks
After reading your essay, ask yourself if it covers the topic of the statement and if you have done everything you were asked to do.
- Get back to your prep work. Review the topic and assignments to make sure you haven't missed anything in your essay.
- For tasks, you can note which part of your essay fulfills which task.
Step 3. Check that your essay answers your problem
Once you have made sure that your essay responds well to its wording, you must also make sure that the content is consistent with your problematic.
- Review the first sentence of each paragraph. Each of these sentences should support your problem.
- Then reread the content of each paragraph. The content should support the first sentence of the paragraph, in order to support your issue.
Step 4. Rewrite if necessary
Add information that needs to be addressed and delete any that stray from your topic.
- Depending on the importance of your edits, you can add, remove, and rearrange a few details without needing to rewrite the entire essay. Sometimes, however, rewriting is essential.
- One rewrite may suffice, but sometimes it is necessary to do more than one.