When writing a comparison and contrast essay, one should focus on finding similar and different features of particular notions, objects, people, etc. Actually, its main purpose is to reflect on these similarities and differences. To write a good essay of this type, a writer should first concentrate on less important characteristics or points and after that switch on to more significant ones. Normally, the main focus of this essay is either on similarities or differences.

Comparison Essay: Where to Begin?

To provide a quality essay, it is vitally important to know its structure and organize all points in a good way. The things should be selected really carefully in order for you to describe them in detail. Another step towards writing a successful academic paper is to provide a strong thesis statement that reveals similarities or differences of the two compared things. The things you choose to compare depend on the comparison and contrast essay topics you are assigned. What is also necessary to keep in mind is that the similarity or difference between the two things should be proven. Your essay should be supported with facts. Any similarities or differences that you mention should be expressed in the thesis statement.

Writing an Outline

Outline is important when writing any type of essay, and comparison and contrast essay is not an exception. The outline can be regarded as a backbone of the paper, since it contains the key facts and parts that you want to include in the essay. It helps to gather and organize ideas. Thus, writing an outline is an important pre-writing stage.

What Is the Structure of Comparative Essay?

The structure that your piece of writing will have greatly depends on comparison essay topics because they determine the similarities or differences you will explore. Actually, such essay can be organized in two different ways.

Model 1. Using such structure is relevant when the paper is going to have many small similarities and differences.

  1. Introductory paragraph where you provide general background information on the things you compare.
  2. Presentation of the 1st object (or person, etc.) under exploration without comparing it to the second one.
  3. Presentation of the 2nd object (notion or a person, etc.). Unlike the first part, this one contains comparison with the 1st object mentioned.
  4. Conclusion.

Model 2. Using this structure is appropriate when the paper explores some substantial similarities and differences. 

  1. Introductory paragraph which gives background information.
  2. 1st body paragraph. Here you present the first similarity or difference found in two things or people.
  3. 2nd body paragraph. Present the second similarity or difference found in two things or people.
  4. 3rd body paragraph. Each body paragraph presents the similarities or differences you have found. Thus you have as many body paragraphs as there are similarities or differences.
  5. Conclusion. Here you briefly restate the differences or similarities found between two compared things or people.

Comparison Essay Example Format

As any other type of essay, this one can be written in different formats: APA, MLA, Harvard, Chicago, Turabian, Vancouver, AMA, etc. The style depends on the topic, scope of study, and general paper requirements. You should be consistent and follow one style and all its rules and requirements: fonts, margins, headings, spacing, numbers, footnotes, references – all this should be taken into consideration.

Ideas and Topics for Writing Comparative Essays

Students can write comparative essays on any topic they wish. The only thing they should remember is that the essay is based on comparing objects, people, notions, events, etc., and the main purpose is to find the most striking similarities and differences. If you have doubts about the topic for your paper, please feel free to contact our company and get professional assistance.