The most common mistakes made by students writing analytical essay

The most common mistakes made by students writing analytical essay

An analytical essay is a typical type of assignment for college students, which is often set not only in history lessons, but also in various language courses, general scientific subjects. In such an essay, the author analyzes the proposed situation, event, topic or question, breaking it out into its components first, in order to understand its essence. This type of essay is usually difficult for students, which leads to making some common mistakes.

The very first mistake in writing analytical essays, students make at the first stage of choosing a topic. Often, the topic for analysis is chosen thoughtlessly, later it appears very difficult to write an analysis of a phenomenon that is incomprehensible, and difficult or uninteresting. First of all, it is necessary to choose the theme which arouses interest in research, and is relevant and interesting to study. And then it is important to take into account the possibility of splitting the study question into smaller aspects, which will be easier to analyze separately and, as a result, it will be easier to make an analysis of the entire issue being studied. For example, analyzing a work of art, the author must study it from the point of view of all the components of artistic devices. The style of the work, poetic expressions, the choice of phraseological units should be analyzed and evaluated at a sufficient level. However, it is important to study the work from the point of view of world history, historical events of the time, or some events in the author’s romantic life, in order to have a complete picture of everything that had an impact on him at the time of writing the investigated work.

The most common mistakes in writing an analytical essay include summarizing instead of analyzing, when the author summarizes and highlights the whole situation, event or topic. Thus, the student describes and explains what and how happened in this phenomenon, forgetting that such a summarization should take no more than a few sentences and its single purpose is only to inform the reader about the subject of analysis.

The logical structure of the presentation plays an important role in writing an analytical essay. All provided arguments must be clearly well-disposed. It is well worth to start with the most important ones, smoothly moving from them to less important arguments.

A common mistake made by students in an analytical essay writing is to build an essay on one single argument. If the essay is built on two or three arguments, the position of the author will be strong and convincing. Having only one argument risks making the essay unconvincing and unreasonable. It is very important here, using certain arguments, to provide precise and appropriate examples that would give the reader a complete understanding of what is happening. Examples should be relevant, simple and understandable to all.

When all the components of writing an analytical essay are sustained, the most important thing remains – is to make a clear and complete analysis. And it is precisely this stage that causes great difficulties for authors of writing an analytical essay. In most cases, students are confused in such situations with an analytical essay and expository essay, describing general information about the phenomenon under investigation instead of explaining how, why, and for what reason it happens. Here they are trying to increase the size of their essay at the expense of “empty” sentences, instead of short, concise and meaningful sentences.

Another weak point of writing such an essay is the correct design of quotes. Citation is an important component in any argument in writing such essays, so it is very important to pay sufficient attention to the correctness off the citation design before completing the work.

Thus, among common mistakes in writing an analytical essay by students, it is possible to distinguish such as an inconsiderate choice of the research topic, lack of analysis and insufficient research on the issue, an ill-considered logical structure of presentation, the presence of only one unfocused argument and the lack of clear examples, as well as incorrect typing of quotes. However, having familiarized yourself with typical mistakes when writing this kind of essay, you can easily avoid them in the future, which will greatly facilitate the writing of such a difficult type of essay.

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