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A Guide to Writing Analytical Essays

by Feb 23, 2017Writing

Students are usually asked to write analytical essays in their assignments and in examinations. One of the major problems that they face is that most of the times, they are not able to judge what an analytical essay actually is. Also, how to start the essay and whether to write the introduction first or to get into the heart of it, always gives students the jitters. This post is focused on addressing these issues.

What is actually an Analytical Essay?

A precise definition goes like this, ‘An Analytical Essay is an analysis of an essay through a text’. Before getting into what an Analytical essay is, let first try to answer what an Analytical Essay isn’t.

An Analytical Essay is not a summary.

Yes! That is the biggest difference between a normal essay and an Analytical Essay. It may sound quite simple, but in reality it is not that much. Check if your essay sounds like a book report, and it states only states the chronological order of occurrence of events. If it is so, then it means, it is actually summarizing the whole story and of course it is not an Analytical one.

Analytical essay is a way of academic writing which is more focused and not merely lists the events like a summary. In context to a book, an Analytical Essay would somewhat be like, how certain characters presented themselves in the story or how the author has managed to formulate such an amazing story. It thus takes into consideration, even the smaller chunks of work that could lead the way to a bigger picture. Normally, it aims to reach a conclusion based on discussion of the facts.

Knowing how to write an Analytical Essay demands the clarity of another term, which is ‘academic writing’. Analytical Essay is a special case of academic writing. This is more focused on facts and is a writing technique that ensures authentic passage of information. The rules to provide references are strict, so that they do not get misquoted.

The writer can give his or her conclusion but need to be clear that it is just what you think and of course it must have some valid and genuine supportive statements. So, the writing should be value adding in terms of information.

What attributes does an Analytical Essay have?

A good Analytical Essay should satisfy the following criteria.

  • Simplicity

This is the most important feature of an Analytical Essay. The information must be simple enough so that the thoughts from the writer to the reader should float freely.

  • Objectivity

Do not let your personal opinion take an upper hand on the facts of the essay. Remember that, if you do so, you are actually violating the rules of academic writing.

  • Concision

The essay must be to the point and must never be stretched with unnecessary words.

  • Verifiability

It is better not to use a fact that has no reference to it.

How to Formulate an Analytical Essay?

The writing style of one author varies from another. But irrespective of that fact, the essay should necessarily have three major sections.

  • Introduction

It is the hook of the essay. It sets a tune to the essay that you are going to write. A good introduction should be able to capture the reader’s attention. It must thus be snappy and should be focused on raising the curiosity. You could also initiate by throwing an open question that could be answered only by reading the complete essay. This technique will actually form the building block of the ‘body’ section.

  • Body

The body of our article gives you the bigger space and is the region where you can attain the heights of creativity considering you do not restructure the facts and do not unnecessarily lengthen it. You can create four or five paragraphs here.

You may choose each paragraph to include a statement that highlights the information present in it. Provide relevant evidences, wherever required. Be very clear on choice of evidences, otherwise you may land your essay into a summary.

  • Conclusion

This is final stage, where you should be ready to wrap up. This should be concise. You may restate the main points without going into much detail or making a direct copy. Remember to provide the solution of the question that you included in the section of introduction. You may draw a relation of the facts in the essay with the actual world. With a final quote or a one line text, you are good enough to end it.

Analytical Essay writing is not that difficult as it seems to be. It just needs a technique and adherence to certain rules. So, keep in mind the characteristics and composition of Analytical Essays. If you wish, you may get to see a few samples here.

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