College Writing Guideline

No matter if you are a first-year student, sophomore, or already an undergraduate, you should have written lots of essays and other types of academic writing assignments. From my own experience, I can tell that accomplishing such tasks may be exceptionally challenging, especially if you do not have corresponding knowledge and skills. Nevertheless, college years give the best learning opportunities, mastering existing features, and developing new ones.

From the very first year at college, I struggled to create a perfect essay that would meet all the requirements specified by the professor. Well, I have to admit that I failed too many times. At some point, I even got the assistance of a custom academic writing service, but I clearly realized it could not last forever. Thus, I made a decision to get as much information about various types of academic writing, their peculiarities, and specifications as possible. Finally, during my sophomore year, I could accomplish even the most difficult essay writing task, conduct research, analyze sources of information, and come up with well-structured, scholarly conclusions.

If you have always had the same problems as I did, this guideline will help you understand the key differences between various types of academic essays, learn their peculiarities, and practice their accomplishment. Check out the diversity of available types of academic writing to succeed during your college and be ready to accomplish the necessary task. Additionally, it will help you avoid the frustration and embarrassment not only during your first year but also as you proceed with the studying.

How to Write


It is a piece of writing that deals with a certain subject. The writer provides some arguments to convince the readers. Excellent structure, logical presentation of the facts, and personal opinion on the topic are the essential components of the essay.


Irrespective of the type of academic writing you are working on, a well-designed outline is a must. In simple words, it is a kind of plan for your further actions. Here the student has to specify the introduction, thesis, and mention key paragraphs to be included in the paper.


Do you use some statistical information or other supplementary materials in your essay? They may not be indispensable, but provide a better understanding of the topic, so you should include them at the end of the paper, with the corresponding references in the text.


A short and precise title is the way to a successful essay. It summarizes the very idea of the study, providing the reader with essential information on the topic. Although the title is usually small, it is exceptionally significant.


The first paragraph of the essay is aimed to provide the reader with a general idea of the essay and make the person interested in its content. It is inevitable to make it clear and concise.


What is the best way to impress your reader? A well-crafted hook mentioned at the beginning of your essay will help you get the audience engaged and interested in the topic of the writing. Start with the question, use descriptive words, and leave an intrigue to spark people's curiosity and make them continue reading.

Thesis Statement

Once you have already dealt with the title, introduction, and hook, you can proceed to the thesis statement. It is a short introduction to the topic, where you sum up your point of view and summarize the main argument of the paper.


This is the last but not the least important part of the essay. The main purpose of the conclusion is to help the reader realize the importance of the above-mentioned research and see possible ways of its use. Restate the topic, mention the thesis, and conclude the key points listed in the essay.

Types of Essay

5 Paragraph Essay

A traditional type of academic writing should consist of the five most important parts. Mention the introduction, include three main body paragraphs, and do not forget about the conclusion. Stick to the structure to create an excellent paper.

1000 Word Essay

If you are a creative student, a 1000 word essay is the exact type of writing you need. The student can choose an interesting topic, make a statement, and provide the reader with sufficient arguments and explanations.

Argumentative Essay

An argumentative essay is the type of academic writing where students have to learn the topic, investigate its aspects, gather facts, and estimate evidence. The main thing about this genre of the essay is the presence of controversial issues and an attempt to prove one of them.

Cause and Effect Essay

A cause and effect essay gives a clear understanding of how certain events are related. The student should analyze and explain the way specific things happened or the way certain items appeared. The purpose of the essay is to clarify how one event can cause another.

Compare and Contrast Essay

A compare and contrast essay is aimed at the presentation of numerous topics, talking about different objects, people, or concepts, and comparing their similarities and discrepancies. It is up to the writer to decide whether to focus only on the comparison or contrast.

Creative Essay

The genre of academic writing is a real finding for creative and motivated students who strive to practice their skills. Forget about the trivial guidelines, which are typical for the usual types of essays, and immerse yourself in the interesting world of creative writing. Add interesting facts, anecdotes, exciting quotes, or unusual statistics to your paper, but never forget about the structure.

Critical Essay

Similar to other genres of academic writing, critical essays presuppose the writer to analyze and estimate an already existing text. Learn the text, claim some of its ideas, and give your explanations and evidence to support the claims.

Definition Essay

If you receive the task to write a definition essay, you should start learning the information about the concept, term, or idea. Once you understand it on your own, you can surely explain it to others. However, do not forget about the formal style and extended definition you should provide.

Descriptive Essay

The goal of the descriptive essay is to present something, like emotion, situation, object, place, or person in a way that will help the reader imagine it. Use sensory information to get the reader involved and help to feel the described item.

Exemplification Essay

An exemplification essay is a subtype of argumentative writing, which should provide the reader with clear examples that prove a presented point. Writing about the negative impact mass media have on people, claiming that the effect is devastating may not be enough. Instead, you need to give sufficient evidence and examples that support your point of view.

Explanatory Essay

An explanatory essay is a type of academic writing where the author presents a certain opinion on a specified topic, ideas of other people or events that have taken place. There is no need to prove or deny the presented details, but the only task of the writer is just to help the reader understand the topic. 

Informative Essay

The aim of the informative essay is to educate the reader on a specific topic. There are numerous aspects this type of writing will unveil. Keep in mind that the informative essay must not include your personal opinion on the topic or any arguments that support the presented information.

Narrative Essay

When you first hear about a narrative essay, you may think about a story you need to tell. In fact, it is a true definition of the essay genre. The purpose of such type of writing is not just to entertain the readers, but also show the significance of the experience.

Nursing Essay

Once you enter a nursing college, this is the type of assignment you will frequently get. This topical paper should present information on a topic and provide readers with as many details as possible.

Opinion Essay

An opinion essay is a type of formal writing that requires the writer to express a personal perspective on the discussed topic. Mention different reasons and arguments that will support your opinion. Additionally, you can include some examples and evidence to make your essay not only interesting but also educational.

Personal Essay

The personal essay is different from the overwhelming majority of other types of writing. It is a well-known form of creative nonfiction that is based on the individual life experience of the writer. It is inevitable to introduce the topic and the subject, but it is also essential to include emotions and feelings in the essay.

Persuasive Essay

This is the most interesting genre of academic writing for students who like to defend their opinions. The only task the writer gets, working on the persuasive essay is to make people agree with the presented point of view. Give sufficient evidence, results of research, and ideas that will prove and support your argument.

Process Essay

In simple words, a process essay provides guidelines on how to make things. In a way, it is a tutorial that gives readers an idea of the steps they need to make to achieve success in a certain activity. In the vast majority of cases, these are technical texts with detailed instructions.

Reflective Essay

The purpose of the reflective essay is to make us think about ourselves, our traits of character, and the ways we can change or have already done. The main task of the writer is to examine a personal life experience and provide readers with the conclusions.

SAT Essay

Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT) is optional in some colleges and obligatory in others. The purpose of this essay genre is to estimate the ability of the student to analyze the argument and make proper conclusions. Focus on the evidence, explanation, reasoning, and other techniques used in the essay to come up with a strong and convincing argument.

Scholarship Essay

Do you want to use an opportunity and get your study expenses covered? A scholarship essay is an exact type of writing you will have to work on. The main purpose of the writing is to show your devotion and academic excellence that deserve the victory. While the scholarship application is used to inform, the essay should persuade.

Synthesis Essay

Similar to other types of academic writing, a synthesis essay is about gathering information on a specific topic or idea. However, the main peculiarity of this paper is a diversity of sources the writer uses to present a definite point of view. There is no way you craft an excellent synthesis essay without numerous sources, a thesis, proper structure, and a conclusion.

Academic Essay

An academic essay is a type of scholarly writing that presents the information in a concise, clear, and structured way. The task of the writer is to provide readers with a controversial thesis. Make sure you create a coherent combination of ideas to make an argument. A perfect structure is one of the most important requirements for the paper.

Case Study

A case study is exploratory research that is aimed at the analysis of a certain phenomenon. Consequently, you need to have a theme, relevant evidence, and certain skills to illustrate theories and highlight various aspects of the question.


Coursework is a curriculum-mandated work that is performed by trainees or students. The purpose of the writing is to help students to show their knowledge and expertise. Additionally, the assignment gives a teacher an opportunity to assess the student's success and give a corresponding grade for the whole course.


A dissertation is a written research project that concludes and summarizes the conducted research. This paper is usually a part of the undergraduate or postgraduate program, which helps the author to get a desired academic degree.

Term Paper

A term paper is a specific genre of research writing that is aimed at the description of a specific concept or event. The writer should include detailed information on the topic, giving the professor an opportunity to evaluate the knowledge, skills, and expertise obtained during the course.

Analytical Essay Writing

Analytical Essay

The main task presupposed by an analytical essay is to discuss a topic, text, or film. The student should use various evidence to support the argument. A perfect structure is a must for the analytical essay. Unlike other types of academic writing, the goal of an essay is to enhance the reader's understanding of the subject.

Critical Analysis

A critical analysis is aimed at the examination and evaluation of the image, concept, work, or text. There is no need to search for the downsides and drawbacks of the item under analysis, but rather express the opinion on the issue. The writer should take two steps to accomplish the task: critical reading and critical writing.

Poetry Analysis

The genre of literature writing is exceptionally interesting and involving for creative students. It presupposes the investigation of the form, content, history, and structure of the poem in order to understand the real meaning the author applied.

Process Analysis

Process analysis is classified as a type of technical writing that is used to convey the outputs, inputs, and operations that take place during a specific process.

Rhetorical Analysis

Rhetorical analysis is the genre of academic writing that aims to explain the main events in the text. The paper presents specific thoughts about the author and the choices he makes. The rhetorical analysis breaks the work into several parts and explains the way they get together in order to persuade, inform, or entertain the reader.

Visual Analysis

Visual analysis is the assignment typical for Art, English, and History classes that is aimed at visual elements of a specific object. The main attention is focused around the scale, texture, color, and line, as the writer described the illustration or artwork the way he or she sees it.

Research Paper

A research paper is a type of academic writing that gives students an opportunity to show their ability to research information, think critically and logically, analyze the received data, and make proper conclusions.

College Admission Essay

Striving to get to college, you need to take maximum effort to provide the committee with an excellent admission essay. It is a unique chance to share some basic information about your personality, goals, and ambitions, challenges, ambitions, life lessons, and experiences you have had, and influence you have made.

Personal Statement

When you send an application to one of the most reputable and appreciated colleges, a personal statement is exactly what you need to think about. A quality paper can support the application. In fact, it is brief information about you as a person, your academic achievements, experience, previous education, and skills.

Literature Reviews

If you enjoy reading, you definitely know what a literature review is. It is a survey of scholarly sources, such as articles, books, or theses that are associated with a certain topic. In the vast majority of cases, the literature review is a part of the research paper, dissertation, or thesis.

Book Reports

A book report is an essay type that is aimed at discussion of the book content. It is one of the most typical college assignments that are issued to students in order to test their ability to think, analyze, and conclude.

Character Analysis

This is one of the most usual tasks during literature classes when you read various stories and analyze the personalities of the main characters. The main task of the writer is to provide brief facts about the story and its participants. Be mindful of important hints, such as mood changes and reactions that may help to understand personality better.

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