How to write an essay?

As a didactic material, this is a guide to learn how to make an essay rich in content and written in clear language. The intention is to provide a user-friendly manual for all kinds of tests. The guide is intended for the different profiles of students or novice writers. Whether you have prior knowledge or is the first time you face the essay.

In general terms, the proposed manual is structured in three stages: prewriting, writing and post-writing. In each of the sections, practical and valuable information is presented to facilitate the work. In addition to the advice in the methodology, empirical advice of the writing profession will also be available.

Prewriting: first stage of the essay guide

Before writing, it is necessary to comply with the prewriting phase, which consists of activities prior to writing such as research, planning and schematization. A text is not the result of a moment of inspiration, but of an arduous planning process. This process involves the selection and delimitation of the topic, the setting of objectives, the application of a logical model. In addition, it also includes the investigation and integration of the results in a writing script. Throughout this guide for trials we will treat each section in detail.

Selection and delimitation of the theme

The first task consists of the choice of topic. The characteristics of a good theme are: actuality, controversy, relevance, multiplicity of interpretations. An example of this would be the implications of artificial intelligence. Then the subject must be delimited, since the approaches can be very varied. The question is useful for this matter: what part of that great whole should I address? For example: advances of the I.A., risks of the I.A., advantages of the I.A. Finally, the subject can be further delimited depending on the interests that motivate us. In our case we would have: risks of artificial intelligence in war devices.

Setting the objectives

Establishing the objectives of the text is an essential step as it helps to guide the essay towards a goal and prevents us from getting out of the matter. The next step to make an essay is to set a series of objectives. Questions such as: What do I want to achieve? Persuade, expose, define, analyze, etc.? It is also necessary to consider the target audience. Writing is a communication process and therefore needs a receiver. Once the audience is defined, we can adapt. That is, an academic essay requires a different tone to an essay for personal purposes. Finally, with clear objectives we will know what and how to write.


In this section of the guide the objective is to select some of the approaches or models for the trial. Among the types of essay we have the argumentative, expository and analytical approach. Based on our theme and respecting the established objectives we can select the one that fits the most. For example, if we want to convince of the risk of implementing I.A. in arms of war, the advisory model is advisable. Thus, the objectives become important and shed light on the choice of an essay-based approach. As a final observation, we must take care that the objectives are always consistent with the model to be used.

The correct use of the compositional structure

Just as the objectives coincide with the essay model, there must also be correspondence with the compositional structure. Before continuing, we will remember that the compositional structure is the application of logic in the text. That said, we recommend using the deductive or inductive structure. This is because the risk of losing coherence is very low. Continuing with our example, we would depart from the general to the particular. That is to say:

  • General thesis. risks of artificial intelligence in war weapons
  • Particularity 1. Types of war weapons,
  • Particularity 2. Incidents with weapons of war.
  • Particularity 3. Incidents with artificial intelligence.

Recovery of the thesis. risks of artificial intelligence in war weapons.

Our final recommendation regarding the logical structure is to resort to the most basic models, at the beginning. Once we gain experience we can explore more sophisticated models such as contrast, cause-effect or problem-solution.

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