Intermediate 2 Short Essay Guide
The Short Essay Has: • Introduction: a short background to the issue, define any terms and outline the content/argument of the essay. • Main Section: paragraphs with a different point discussed in each paragraph. • Conclusion: this should sum up the points raised and the argument of the essay to then answer the essay question set.
Introduction • Set the Scene: You have to provide some background to the story. • Define any Terms: If there is a word that should be define, for example, immigrant or sectarianism, then give a one sentence definition. • Signpost your argument: This simply means tell the reader what different factors you will discuss in the essay.
The Main Section • This is made up of around three to five paragraphs (one for each reason), depending on the essay. • The first sentence of each paragraph should tell the reader what the paragraph will be about, that is, the point you will be making in that paragraph. • Once you have developed the point raised, you have to use that point to help answer the question set. Every paragraph should go some way to answering the question. If it doesn’t – bin it! • The last sentence of the paragraph should lead into the next paragraph.
The Conclusion • Begin: In conclusion.. or To sum up.. or To conclude.. • Give a summary of the main points of the argument, for and against, push and pull, etc. What is the main point(s) of the findings? Make a judgement. • Finally, finish off the essay by answering the question set.
What you must avoid doing: • Don’t personalise: do not write “I am going to tell you…” or other such childish stuff like, “ In my essay I will tell you…” Instead of saying “In this essay, I will tell you about all the push and pull reasons why the Irish left Ireland”, write this, “There were many reasons why the Irish left Ireland between 1830 – 1930, all which can be organised into push and pull reasons.”
Remember: • Answer the question. ATQ! Make sure you regularly look back at the question to make sure you are answering it properly. You don’t want to waste time on something that is not tackling the question. You will get no marks for it. • Remember the Essay Structure. 3 out of the 8 marks are given for a clear introduction, separate paragraphs and a conclusion that answers the question. • Keep an eye on the webpage for help and advice. • History at Huntly