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Online Guide to Writing and Research

Thinking Strategies and Writing Patterns

Writing Essay Examinations

Make Your Answer Relevant and Complete

Writing a complete and relevant answer means that you have addressed each part of your essay prompt and that you have included the classroom information needed to answer the question: no more, no less.

When you answer an essay question in a relevant manner, you apply your knowledge to the analytical task the prompt requires.

  • Demonstrate your ability to locate the central, analytical task of your prompt.

  • Discern which knowledge is required to answer the question and which knowledge is not required.

Apply your knowledge in a focused manner so that your knowledge supports your analysis.

The final stage of writing an essay exam is to write an essay, and for this, the rules are the same as for any essay. Provide an introduction, a thesis, body (or supporting paragraphs), and a conclusion. Just remember that an answer for an essay exam is usually a short essay. For this reason, your introduction should be no longer than a sentence or two before providing your thesis. Body paragraphs should clearly develop and provide support for your thesis. Then, as with any conclusion, you should briefly recap with a statement about the larger significance of the point made by your essay.


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Table of Contents: Online Guide to Writing