How to Write a Compare and Contrast Essay: Examples, Topics, Outline

How to Write a Compare and Contrast Essay: Examples, Topics, Outline

It is always a big question for beginner writers how to write a compare and contrast essay. Briefly talking, you just need to learn that classic five-paragraph essay format and compare two subjects in the body section of your paper. If you want to learn more, just proceed reading and get few interesting compare and contrast essay topics as a bonus.

7 Tips on How to Write a Compare and Contrast Essay

Compare and contrast essay is, as we said before, a simple and interesting paper format to deal with. The main idea lies right on the surface and its name talks for itself. You need to compare two subjects that sometimes are absolutely unrelated to each other. You need to analyze both things and come up with a conclusion. Your text may be a search for some solution of a broader problem or just describe a particular aspect. Compare and contrast essay writing can be divided into seven main stages:

  • Stage 1: Get yourself a topic
  • Stage 2: Create an outline
  • Stage 3: Introduce the topic
  • Stage 4: Start with the body paragraphs
  • Stage 5: Identify the main contrast between subjects
  • Stage 6: The conclusion
  • Stage 7: Editing and revising

One of the most important stages of your writing would be the introduction where you should present your clear thesis statement. You should come with few thesis statements at once and then choose the best one you can handle. And just after that part is done you can start with the real comparison and composition.

If you would ever ask an experienced writer about successful writing tips, he will tell you that the deal is about your experience and knowledge. Our experts will tell you absolutely the same, but after teaching you how to write a compare and contrast essay. Let’s start with five paragraph paper.

How to Write Compare and Contrast Essay Outline

Any paper should have its outline. It is a must if you want your writing process to be easier and clear. It is great to be able to write from scratch the whole paper, but the working process will flow easier if you create an outline. Compare and contrast essay outline is nothing different from any other outlines people write for another type of articles.

If the topic you are working with is exciting for you, we are sure it is absolutely easy to work with it. But you should note that it is still important to be competent on the topic you are writing about. Or you are risking of getting blocked by bad knowledge of your topic and inability to develop the idea as it should be.

Here is how a typical outline should look for subject by subject comparison:

Introduction

  • Presentation of the general topic
  • Your specific topic and clue
  • Your main goals you’re trying to reach in this very essay

Body

  • Subject 1 – three or more aspects with detailed descriptions.
  • Subject 2 – three or more aspects with detailed descriptions.

Conclusion

  • A short list of main results.
  • Possible future development, solution or evaluation.

And for the outline, try to feel free with your writing. Just get those marks you want to include into your paper with no doubt. There can be lots of those ideas and while writing and editing some of them may fall off. It is normal and even necessary if too many ideas you have. And remember that organization is a key to your comfortable working process. And the good organization is the key to your successful work.

How to Write Compare and Contrast Essay Introduction

Compare and contrast essay introduction is no different from any other introduction you may have already done or read before. The principles you used for your definition essay are absolutely the same for your compare and contrast paper. It should be just one paragraph long.

  • Do it brief and striking.
  • Identify the main idea behind your theme.
  • Synchronize it with your outline.
  • You may write this part the last one to get a good connection with a conclusion.

Any good introduction is just a perfect start. And it means you need to make it convincing and strong no matter how conflicting your topic is. It should be clear and understandable for any type of a reader. You can get some interesting info on the topic you are writing about. Some writers prefer asking questions that make their readers involved from the start. If you decide to ask a question, don’t forget to hint at the answer in the next part of your paper.

Writing of Compare and Contrast Essay Example of Body Paragraphs

The next part is the body. Those paragraphs are the main place for the comparison and the story you are going to tell. And with your starting draft, you need to list and describe all the ideas you have in your outline. Just use everything you can remember from the topic you are working with.

Each paragraph of the body gives the reader exact description and analysis of the subject. And then it offers a comparison of those two subjects based on those previously described features. Here is how the body section may look like if you use a classic three paragraphs in body section style:

Similar marks vs. Difference

  • 1st paragraph in the body section is going to tell about similar marks of both your topic masters.
  • 2nd paragraph of the body will talk about all those parts that are different.
  • 3rd paragraph talks about the place both subjects get in the field covered by the topic.

A subject vs. B subject

  • 1st describes the A subject and tells about its features
  • 2nd paragraph of the body tells about the B subject of your paper and gives a strong analysis of its features.
  • 3rd paragraph compares and analyzes both subjects.

Each paragraph and we have three of them in this part, should be researched separately and consciously. Don’t pay too much attention to the difference between the facts, but the topic you are writing about. And to make your paper absolutely high level, you need to get even deeper than you can and another writer usually so. Try to find something that is completely unknown and make discoveries if it is possible.

How to Write Compare and Contrast Essay Conclusion

Some students make their writing mistakes just at the very end of their papers. Compare and contrast essay conclusion is the place where you may just get into a serious trouble, and it is great to keep it in mind before subscribing your work as the finished one. Some experts say that this final paragraph is even more important than the introduction. We must say that this is totally true.

In your introduction, you present the subject and make the first impression. And here you need to make the final strike and convince your reader that you are right. And it will be the last words you can write about the entire thing. Don’t make it sound just like a simple summary, but convincing and ripe position. Don’t forget to make few references to the body paragraphs of your text. Here are few basic tips you need to keep in mind:

  • Answer the question "So What?"
  • Synthesize, don't summarize
  • Redirect your readers
  • Create a new meaning

Winning Compare and Contrast Essay Topics

You need to understand that well-written compare and contrast essay example is just a half of your way to success. Correct and interesting compare and contrast essay topics are another part you need to reckon with. Here is the list of topics you can suggest for the start:

Compare and Contrast Essay Topics for College Students

  1. Apple vs. Microsoft
  2. Christianity vs. Islam
  3. Trump vs. Obama
  4. North Korea vs. South Korea
  5. Analog vs. Digital
  6. Electricity vs. Petroleum
  7. Communism vs. Capitalism
  8. Hydropower stations vs. Solar power stations
  9. Nuclear Power vs. Solar Power
  10. Red wine vs. Beer

Compare and Contrast Essay Topics for High School

  1. Contemporary art vs. Classic art
  2. Rome Empire vs. Nazi Germany
  3. Monarchy vs. Democracy
  4. Meat eater vs. Vegans
  5. Jesus vs. Buddha
  6. England Colonies vs. French or Spanish Colonies
  7. Game of Thrones vs. Lord of the rings
  8. Ancient China vs. Japan
  9. Saltwater life vs. Freshwater life
  10. Greek Mythology vs. Roman Mythology
  11. 1914 vs. 1939
  12. Godfather vs. The Sopranos
  13. Rock vs. Pop

Compare and Contrast Topics for Middle School

  1. Pacific ocean vs. Atlantic ocean
  2. Plastic vs. Wood
  3. School vs. College
  4. Mozart vs. Bach
  5. Comedy vs. Drama
  6. Chinese language vs. Korean language
  7. Rap vs. Metal
  8. English vs. German
  9. Daytona vs. F-1
  10. Theatre vs. Classical Music
  11. Children vs. Adults
  12. Math vs. Literature
  13. Physics vs. Chemistry

Compare and Contrast Essay Topics for 6th Grade

  1. Fanta vs. Sprite
  2. Father vs. Mother
  3. Dogs vs. Cats
  4. Darth Vader vs. Sauron
  5. Medieval knights vs. Samurais
  6. Shark vs. Orca
  7. Mammals vs. Birds
  8. Lions vs. Tigers
  9. Watercolor vs. Oil
  10. Airplanes vs. Cars
  11. Subway vs. Railway
  12. Apples vs. Pears
  13. Batman vs. Shadow
  14. Football vs. Basketball

How to Write a 5 Paragraph Compare and Contrast Essay

If you don’t know how to write a 5 paragraph compare and contrast essay, we should calm you down, it is simpler than it seems. The format of five paragraph paper considers 1 to 3 to 1 scheme where intro and conclusion have one paragraph and the body has three. But with this type of articles, you are free to experiment and to get something really unique.

Five paragraph format is a classic way to deal with most essays out there. No matter what topic do you have, this format will fit it perfectly. Writers often call it a subject to subject style. Its scheme would look like this:

Introduction

  • 1 paragraph – to present the topic

Body

  • 3 paragraphs – to identify and describe features of the subjects

Conclusion

  • 1 paragraph – to make a summary

You can create an article with four or six paragraphs just using the proper scheme of mixing those paragraphs. It also depends on the outline you have created before starting writing. And we will tell you how to write a proper article with just two or three paragraphs in the body section.

Expert Advice

Every good paper should start somewhere. And to start, you need to understand that this type of essays is about similarities and differences of two sometimes absolutely unrelated things. And don’t let the word comparison confuse you. It is not just about listing similar and different features of two subjects. It is more about discovering new aspects and revealing information that can be new to your reader.

And at the end of it all here are few great tips you should keep in your mind:

  • Make your title encouraging

A successful paper always has a good title. It is sharp, brief, and to the core. It can be a question or complex type of a sentence, but it should strike and hit all the aspects of your topic and the problem you are going to define in your paper.

  • Breaks are good

Don’t be afraid to stop and reload. It is important if you write a big paper and your thoughts are already messed around. It would give you a chance to see your work with a fresh eye even if you were resting for an hour.

  • Review and edit

Both of these things are crucial. A successful article can’t be completed without editing reviewing. Check every aspect of its grammar and structure. Make it flow smoothly. This makes the entire paper sound more diverse and interesting. But don’t just compare two subjects. Get few convincing contrasts between them. Yes, don’t forget that it is not just a compare essay but contrast also.

Conclusion

Students often get confused because of this type of papers. There are lots of other hard to deal with tasks, but this one makes you feel like it is simple from the start. But it may fool you around with that fake simplicity. Sometimes it gets very difficult to compare two unrelated subjects and find those not so obvious contrasts between them. Start writing and you see that ides don’t come easy. It is challenging, and you should be prepared for this. And if you still have any doubts about any aspects of this task, our professional team is here to help you 24/7. Just place an order or ask for help in any other comfortable way and we will be there with our skills, experience, and respect.

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