Feb 12, 2020 11:01 AM EST
4 Hacks How to Write an Open-ended College Essay
An open-ended essay is an essay that is essentially a long and detailed answer to the question given by the teacher. Writing it isn’t any harder than writing any other kind of paper, but there are a few tips you need to know. An open-ended essay somewhat limits your fantasy and freedom, because it has rules to be obeyed.
If writing an open-ended essay sounds like too much trouble to you, writing companies like PaperHelp, GradeMiners and other reputable ones featured on LegitWritingServices can quickly write it for you in no time. This is a tricky essay to write, so you shouldn't be ashamed if it seems hard. Still, if you know the dos and don’ts, any open-ended essay will be a piece of cake. So…
1. Be precise
The first trick of an open-ended essay is that you should answer exactly the question you were asked. If you switch the topic, even accidentally, it might be interpreted as you trying to evade the main question, because you don’t know the answer. So, if you are asked to write about the character, don’t try to describe all the supportive cast, use them only to illustrate the character development or traits of the person you are asked about.
Sometimes it is really hard to gather enough facts for the whole essay, but it is the case when you should try hard. Avoid vague, generalized statements, use the facts and quotations (quotations, if used properly, can add a paragraph or two to your essay totally and show the teacher that you have actually read the book or watched the movie you are writing about).
Always introduce the title and author at the beginning of your essay, if the question is about a named work. Also, you should give a short answer to the question in the very first paragraph – the rest of the essay should consist of proofs and descriptions of your answers. Make sure that your text is as precise as possible and – wow! – you have just avoided the first and the most popular trap of the students writing open-ended essays.
2. Facts first, your opinion later
In open-ended essay facts really matter. You should prove your point using as many facts as possible, as if it really WAS the rocket science. Facts also add certainty to your essay (see paragraph 1) and they are expected from you in this kind of work. Look for them on different educational sources or in free essay examples on services like StudyMoose. Always have at least three supportive examples (better from the different parts of the book if it is possible).
Even if you remember only a few details, but are sure that this example really matters here – don’t be shy to use it as is! If you don’t remember the names or dates, try to describe that persons, places or events with as many details as you can. Believe us, it’s still better than omit them completely and lose a great example of your point from the book.
Each of your paragraphs should be “tied” to the prompt. Use the words of the prompt at the beginning of each one to show how they are connected (and, generally, why this paragraph is in your essay at all). Don’t be afraid to sound redundant, this is just what you need to do to show that you fully understand the sense and logic of your writing.
3. Supportive paragraphs
Usually, you are expected to explain not only the facts but also the author’s way of presenting these facts. That’s what supportive paragraphs are for. After showing that you know the book, you should also show that you know the theory. Describe the tools (literary or otherwise) that the author used to answer the teacher’s question and to make all the audience (including your) get his answer equally right.
Avoid the temptation to talk about the feelings of the reader that the author – in your opinion – wanted to evoke. Focusing on the audience isn’t desired in open-ended essays, you still have to be as precise as possible. Remember that the view of the author is shaped by their culture, conditions and moral views and your own culture, conditions, etc. can drastically differ – so this part will be too personal for this kind of paper.
Supportive paragraphs aren’t the proper place to retell parts of the story. You did it before, now you have to concentrate on the tools, plot devices and other “technical sides” of the book.
4. You can express your opinion
After all the needed parts you still can talk about your own feelings after reading this book. Actually, this part will persuade the teacher that you haven’t just read the summary or some other essay to rewrite it – but you did take the literary piece personally, you have your own opinion and you can even disagree with the author.
This part is not mandatory, but we all know how hard it can be to stay silent if the question really hits home. So, if you are sure that you fulfilled all the requirements above – go ahead, dear Cinderella, the chores are done and you can dance as you wish!
As you can see, writing an open-ended essay is somewhat tricky and it really demands reading the piece you are asked about – but if you really read it, you will easily write a wonderful paper, full of precise examples, literary analysis and, of course, your own thoughts about the matter that show that you do really care.
Good luck to you! Just go and write an awesome essay.
Join the Conversation