How do I write an Essay?
At GCSE you will need to show that you can write a piece of extended
writing (an 'essay') which answers a question. It will need to have a
number of points in answer to the question, facts ('evidence') which prove
the point, and arguments which explain and develop how what you are
saying answers the question.
Take the following essay question:
‘Naval rivalry was the main cause of the First World War.’ How far do
you agree with this statement? Explain your answer.
There is no need for an introduction paragraph. However, you need to have a clear
structure in this answer so that the examiner can keep track of your points. In this
answer, you MUST show both sides of the topic. You must show both why you AGREE
with the question and why you DISAGREE with the question.
Ideally, the best candidates will provide three points in agreement with the topic and
three points in disagreement with the topic. You then MUST give a conclusion, which
(i) Which one point is the most important and why
(ii) Why you agree or disagree with the topic in the question.
IN BRIEF – Think of a number of points in answer to the question and present, give evidence
and explain every paragraph.
DO NOT BE FOOLED – Even if the question asks straight out 'Do you agree', the examiner is
NOT interested in your opinion. DON'T just write a paragraph saying ONLY what you think!