A Comprehensive Guide On Compare And Contrast Essay Writing

How to Write A Compare and Contrast Essay

Whenever students are asked to work on a compare and contrast essay, it instantly sparks a sense of confusion. While you have to draw a comparison between two subjects, it is also important to identify the similarities. Basically, we can say that it is a part of analytical writing that represents an individual’s capability of critical thinking and intellect.

As a student, you may be asked to write on a variety of subjects such as art, entertainment, literature, books, etc. The compare and contrast essays remain a part of academic writing from school to college years. Despite that, students often fail to grasp its essence and formulate a winning essay paper.

So, today in this blog we will be diving into the depths of compare and contrast essay writing. Get ready to explore the intricacies of this unique form of essay writing, different methods, structuring, and more!

What Is A Compare And Contrast Essay?

As we are here to learn the nitty-gritty of compare and contrast essay writing, it is essential to first understand what exactly this form of essay writing is.

Compare And Contrast Essay Definition

Compare and contrast essays are a form of writing that comprehends how two individual subjects are similar and different.

Basically, a compare and contrast essay presents an analysis of two or more subjects with each other. You are required to look at the differences and similarities that the two subjects share. It must be noted that both subjects should fall under the same category, however, they may have a few differences. For instance, two books, two educational institutions, two paintings, etc.

Most students often don’t know how to write a compare and contrast essay. The idea is to keep the focus on the central point and elucidate the value and consequences of the evaluation. Hence, you need to make sure to come up with a strong thesis that clearly defines the key theme of your essay.

The Purpose Of A Compare And Contrast Essay

Compare and contrast essay papers are a significant part of academic life. But, what is the objective behind writing them?

The comparison enables us to recognize the similarities in the elements, whereas, contrast helps in identifying the aspects of two subjects that make them different. That’s what we aim to achieve with this form of essay writing.

However, we must start with at least two or more subjects that meaningfully align with each other. Our focus should be on highlighting the unthinkable. What do we mean by that? Rather than stating the obvious, identify the somewhat unique factors.

Let us elaborate a bit further.

When it comes to contrasting the two different objects, it would be ideal to choose two different types of apples or bananas, rather than a banana and an apple. Two objects that fall under the same category make for a better choice to serve the purpose of a compare and contrast essay.

Also, when it comes to comparing, pick two subjects completely unrelated to each other. Choosing two subjects from different categories offers scope for a fair comparison as they would seldom have anything in common. The more dissimilar the subjects are, the more interesting your findings and outcome will be.

Also, read the explanatory essay to explore new essay formats.

Two Popular Ways To Structure Your Compare And Contrast Essay: Outline Details

The academic experts have derived two compare and contrast essay structure methods. The major difference between them lies in the way the information is organized.

Block Method

The block method is widely used for drafting short essay papers. In this type of structuring, you need to discuss a certain aspect in detail before moving to the next.

It is crucial to choose the arguments that let you inspect both of the objects or subjects carefully. Now, the total points you will be discussing in your essay will impact the number of paragraphs in the body of your essay.

Here is the appropriate structure of a compare and contrast essay as per the block method.

  • Introduction: Here, introduce the different subjects of your essay to make your readers familiar with the topic. Then, write a powerful thesis statement.
  • 1stBody Paragraph: Craft the first argument related to the first subject of your essay.
  • 2nd Body Paragraph: It’s time to review the second argument of the first subject.
  • 3rdBody Paragraph: Now, draft the first argument of the second subject. This is when you need to mark the dissimilarities and similarities with the first argument.
  • 4th Body Paragraph: Here, discuss the second argument of the second subject. Additionally, identify the similar and different aspects of the second subject from the first argument.
  • Conclusion: Wrap up your write-up by illuminating the disparities, divergence, and identical elements between the individual elements in the picture. Refrain from mentioning any new outlook, claim, or details in the conclusion.

Point-By-Point Method

The point-by-point method is applied to lengthy essays. In this case, the entire essay paper is divided into different sections.

The core idea is to present the review of a single point at once and then illustrate its link with each one of the chosen subjects. Keep doing this and move ahead to the next point. In this method, more than 1 paragraph is drafted to explain the issue.

Let us have a look at the compare and contrast essay outline according to the point-by-point method.

  • Introduction: Establish the basis of two subjects that you will be discussing. Further, write a strong thesis.
  • 1stPoint: Here, write about the first point of both of your subjects. Also, draw a comparison and contrast analysis of the concerned points in the chosen subjects.
  • 2ndPoint: Now, draft the second point of the subjects. Further, write comparing and contrasting arguments.
  • 3rdPoint: It’s time to write the third point of the subjects Also, draft a comparison of the arguments.
  • Conclusion: As your essay reaches the end, make sure to illuminate the similar and differing aspects of the two subjects. Avoid introducing any new piece of information, claims, or idea.

How To Write A Compare And Contrast Essay?

Let’s come to the point now!

We all know how difficult it could be to draft a powerful essay paper. The difficulty levels increase when it comes to writing a compare and contrast essay. You need to be strict with your research and dig into many different sources to pick relevant information. Moreover, it is essential to follow the right structure and method while approaching your essay paper.

Steps to Write a Compare and Contrast Essay

So, here we are explaining how to start a compare and contrast essay and then take it to a meaningful end.

Be Careful With Topic Selection

The first step to writing a successful essay paper, be it of any type, is choosing the right topic. Hence, it is crucial to do background research and understand the topic clearly. Especially in compare and contrast essay writing, the aim is to recognize the similar and different elements between the two subjects and present analysis.

Make sure to look into credible sources and gather as much information as you can about the subject.

Some important points to make your topic selection process easier:

  • Choose two topics from the same category with inherent differences.
  • Pick completely different subjects, with only one similar element.
  • Select subjects that appear similar, but share many differences.

Keep The Ideas Organized

Once you have selected the topic, the next major thing is arranging all the ideas meaningfully. Organize everything in such a way that it highlights the essential traits of both subjects. You must consider the core themes, aims, and a central idea of both topics.

Write down all the ideas as these notes will come in handy while drafting the final copy. Also, you must analyze the information and prepare a personal strategy to approach the essay.

Prepare A Strong Thesis Statement

A thesis statement is requisite for compare and contrast essay writing. It helps in developing a focused argument that surrounds the theme of your essay. Further, it offers readers an insight into the current scenario related to the subject. Make sure to be specific about the core idea while crafting the thesis.

Moreover, your thesis must have the capacity to present the synopsis of the entire essay, without being lengthy.

Formulate An Outline

As you are done with your topic selection, gathering the relevant information, and writing the thesis, get ready to prepare an outline.

The compare and contrast essay outline is purely based on the topic of your essay.

Initially, identify whether there are more similarities or differences between your chosen subjects.

In case you find more similarities, work on the comparison of the topics. Whereas, if there are more differences then prepare a contrast.

However, the basic outline structure remains the same. The essay is divided into different sections including introduction, main body paragraphs, and a conclusion. The outline forms the basis of an essay paper which keeps the information logically aligned. Further, it helps in organizing the details.

Include Supporting Claims And Evidence 

It is highly recommended to only use credible sources to collect the information for your essays. A compare and contrast essay requires an extra pinch of research and strong comparison. Thus, make sure to always reference the information used in your write-up. You will be required to work with facts, figures, claims, examples, and ideas to back up your point.

Here are some sources you can look into:

  • Published articles
  • Academic journals
  • Books
  • Authentic websites, especially by the government or an established authority
  • Scholarly reports, etc.

Draft, Proofread And Edit Before the Final Delivery 

Your outline is ready and you have all the important details in your hand. So, now is the time to get started with the writing part.

As you start drafting your compare and contrast essay stick to the predefined structure. Also, it is important to follow a smooth transition between the different ideas. Otherwise, the write-up will lose its true meaning and the readers will lose interest.

Another important tip is giving equal value and weightage to each topic. Properly laid out the differences and similarities between the subjects, as that is the whole point of our write-up.

Never submit your work without proofreading everything properly. It helps you identify errors in grammar, sentence structuring, spelling, data placement, etc. Identify the issues within the essay and edit them right away. This is the most important part of writing any type of assignment or paper.

Awesome Compare And Contrast Essay Topics For Students In 2022

  1. Living in a city v/s country life.
  2. Compare and contrast the effect on weight loss: Dieting v/s healthy eating habits.
  3. Traditional classroom learning v/s e-learning.
  4. Cryptocurrency v/s real currency: Which will last longer in society?
  5. Draft a compare and contrast analysis on Marvel v/s DC.
  6. Public school system v/s private school system.
  7. Introvert personality v/s extrovert personality.
  8. Draw a comparison between two popular plays written by Shakespeare.
  9. Common home v/s a smart house.
  10. Earthquake v/s volcanic eruption: What causes more destruction?
  11. The better source of learning: Audiobooks v/s paper books?
  12. Spring v/s autumn.
  13. Present-day art v/s 16th-century art.
  14. Leonardo Da Vinci v/s Pablo Picasso.
  15. Factors of happiness: materialistic v/s non-materialistic.

Valuable Tips To Write A Noteworthy Compare And Contrast Essay

Now that you have understood the right way to approach and complete a compare and contrast essay, here are a few additional tips for you. They will help you formulate a powerful essay paper.

  • You need to invest a good amount of time into brainstorming. It will help you identify the major similarities and differences about the topic. This way you can derive as much information as you can on the subject.
  • Make sure to clarify the background details right in the beginning. Doing this will make it easier for the readers to understand the context properly.
  • You need to build a strong and meaningful connection between the subjects. Do not commit the mistake of simply summarizing the information instead of drafting a strong comparison.
  • It is vital to adhere to a proper compare and contrast essay outline, structure, and format while writing your paper. Doing this will keep you on track and you won’t lose the flow.
  • Proofreading is extremely necessary as it helps identify the mistakes in your write-up. You need to ensure that the grammar and punctuation are right on point.
  • The conclusion of your essay is as important as the introduction. Do not add new information while closing the essay.
  • It is best to explain all the important details of your essay. It lets the readers understand the information in a much better way.
  • Last but not the least, always cite the sources of the information you have mentioned in your paper. This will help you get an extra mark on your assignment.

Also, read the cause and effect essay.

Wrapping Up

compare and contrast essay revolves around the general idea of observing and finding the similarities and differences between two different subjects. Hence, it is crucial to carefully identify all the elements. Go for subjects that share a common ground. Also, focus on maintaining an objective outlook and avoid taking the emotional road. Give equal emphasis to both subjects. In-depth research is necessary to achieve valuable outcomes.

We hope you found this blog helpful!