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Tips for English essays? (220-260 words)
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1
#1
0 Frags +

I'm preparing for an exam in 4 days and my biggest struggle is the writing part.
im presented with a subject and three factors that affect the subject
i can come up with filler for cetain subjects but its very hard reaching the 220 words minimum

What are some tips for writing a lot about a random subject i probably know nothing about ?
Examples from other years: Recent increase in international travel, ways of encouraging people to study science, ways of encouraging children to exercise

I'm preparing for an exam in 4 days and my biggest struggle is the writing part.
im presented with a subject and three factors that affect the subject
i can come up with filler for cetain subjects but its very hard reaching the 220 words minimum

What are some tips for writing a lot about a random subject i probably know nothing about ?
Examples from other years: Recent increase in international travel, ways of encouraging people to study science, ways of encouraging children to exercise
2
#2
-14 Frags +

Literally bs the whole thing and use a lot of big words, that's what my English teachers have always told me to do

Literally bs the whole thing and use a lot of big words, that's what my English teachers have always told me to do
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#3
36 Frags +
PontLiterally bs the whole thing and use a lot of big words, that's what my English teachers have always told me to do

this is bad advice

[quote=Pont]Literally bs the whole thing and use a lot of big words, that's what my English teachers have always told me to do[/quote]

this is bad advice
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#4
30 Frags +

wait 220 words? that's not that much is it?

wait 220 words? that's not that much is it?
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#5
5 Frags +

be really structured in your response; First state your main thesis, then lay out some key points ( doesn't matter what they are), then explain each of your key points, then do a little conclusion at the end. It helps you organise your thoughts and it shows the marker that you know how to craft an argument. getting the word count will happen if you just take the time to expand each of your key points
edit: on rereading your post I'm guessing this is like an english as a second language class?
same stuff applies but you should take care to vary your sentence structure as much as possible, so it doesn't end up sounding really robotic

be really structured in your response; First state your main thesis, then lay out some key points ( doesn't matter what they are), then explain each of your key points, then do a little conclusion at the end. It helps you organise your thoughts and it shows the marker that you know how to craft an argument. getting the word count will happen if you just take the time to expand each of your key points
edit: on rereading your post I'm guessing this is like an english as a second language class?
same stuff applies but you should take care to vary your sentence structure as much as possible, so it doesn't end up sounding really robotic
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#6
4 Frags +

the triangle structure for writing introductions and conclusions seems to help. for ur introduction, start with some kind of general statement or hook related to the thesis, then transition to talking about the subject, etc. then state your thesis. it's kinda reversed for the conclusion.

the triangle structure for writing introductions and conclusions seems to help. for ur introduction, start with some kind of general statement or hook related to the thesis, then transition to talking about the subject, etc. then state your thesis. it's kinda reversed for the conclusion.
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#7
0 Frags +
sage78I'm preparing for an exam in 4 days and my biggest struggle is the writing part.
im presented with a subject and three factors that affect the subject
i can come up with filler for cetain subjects but its very hard reaching the 220 words minimum

What are some tips for writing a lot about a random subject i probably know nothing about ?
Examples from other years: Recent increase in international travel, ways of encouraging people to study science, ways of encouraging children to exercise

Are you taking a Cambridge English exam? I did one recently (I'm not american) and while the writing test was my lowest grade (185 out of 210) I feel like I could give some tips to you, of course the writing test was the one I did the worst on so take everything with a grain of salt.

This might sound dumb but try to make your stuff look convincing, believe 100% what you are writing, even though it might sound like bullshit (lol) I feel like writing letters and opinion based essays is way easier than things like reports and reviews so if you get the former you will have an easier time.

Feel free to come up with filler but make sure that you don't write too much, a big problem I had when doing the writing test was that I would write too much filler without getting to the point so then I would run out of words to write (there is a limit of 260 words I believe).

All in all if you have posted a lot in forums before then you shouldn't have any problems with this test, the fact that you are here in an English forum asking for help clearly shows that.

Oh and yes you should also vary your sentences, don't try to repeat yourself too much, your report/review/letter/whatever should look just like the ones you see in the Internet/other forums/websites/etc

Good luck!

[quote=sage78]I'm preparing for an exam in 4 days and my biggest struggle is the writing part.
im presented with a subject and three factors that affect the subject
i can come up with filler for cetain subjects but its very hard reaching the 220 words minimum

What are some tips for writing a lot about a random subject i probably know nothing about ?
Examples from other years: Recent increase in international travel, ways of encouraging people to study science, ways of encouraging children to exercise[/quote]

Are you taking a Cambridge English exam? I did one recently (I'm not american) and while the writing test was my lowest grade (185 out of 210) I feel like I could give some tips to you, of course the writing test was the one I did the worst on so take everything with a grain of salt.

This might sound dumb but try to make your stuff look convincing, believe 100% what you are writing, even though it might sound like bullshit (lol) I feel like writing letters and opinion based essays is way easier than things like reports and reviews so if you get the former you will have an easier time.

Feel free to come up with filler but make sure that you don't write too much, a big problem I had when doing the writing test was that I would write too much filler without getting to the point so then I would run out of words to write (there is a limit of 260 words I believe).

All in all if you have posted a lot in forums before then you shouldn't have any problems with this test, the fact that you are here in an English forum asking for help clearly shows that.

Oh and yes you should also vary your sentences, don't try to repeat yourself too much, your report/review/letter/whatever should look just like the ones you see in the Internet/other forums/websites/etc

Good luck!
8
#8
3 Frags +

Essays that you do not know the topic to until the day you write it are always nerve-racking. However, the 220-word-minimum soothes it out a little. Here's my approach to this (all my opinion)

1. Topic paragraph: Address the problem/situation you are given in your own words. Usually a brief and short paragraph.
2. Body paragraph 1: State the origin of the problem/situation. Generally a very long paragraph. Remember to make key points and use concrete evidence.
3. Body paragraph 2: Who is this problem/situation affecting? Again, give clear examples on who they are, and why they are being affected.
4. Body paragraph 3: What (in your opinion) is the best solution? Why? Give clear key points on why it will work, and support them with good evidence.
5. Conclusion: Summarize the entire essay. This is usually the easiest one to write, but it is still needed. Put your personal thoughts in here as well.

I cannot gaurentee that this will give you an A. However, these are just my thoughts on this. Good luck on the essay,my man.

Essays that you do not know the topic to until the day you write it are always nerve-racking. However, the 220-word-minimum soothes it out a little. Here's my approach to this (all my opinion)

1. Topic paragraph: Address the problem/situation you are given in your own words. Usually a brief and short paragraph.
2. Body paragraph 1: State the origin of the problem/situation. Generally a very long paragraph. Remember to make key points and use concrete evidence.
3. Body paragraph 2: Who is this problem/situation affecting? Again, give clear examples on who they are, and why they are being affected.
4. Body paragraph 3: What (in your opinion) is the best solution? Why? Give clear key points on why it will work, and support them with good evidence.
5. Conclusion: Summarize the entire essay. This is usually the easiest one to write, but it is still needed. Put your personal thoughts in here as well.

I cannot gaurentee that this will give you an A. However, these are just my thoughts on this. Good luck on the essay,my man.
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#9
1 Frags +

Do the thing where you rephrase your previous sentences just to pad out your statements. Been using this trick since gradeschool to pad pointless writing out

Do the thing where you rephrase your previous sentences just to pad out your statements. Been using this trick since gradeschool to pad pointless writing out
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#10
6 Frags +

wow i didnt expect that much help!

thanks everyone specially johnf and yes im taking the Cambridge C1 test wich requires 75% score to pass, but might still give me B2 or B1 certificate if i go below that (hopefully i dont)

also to those that say 220 words isnt much.... ive used english online for a while but not being a native speaker makes it a little harder

im pretty confident on the other parts but ive always hated essays even in spanish since i feel like an actor writing a crappy story on the go even if my teacher ends up saying its good

wow i didnt expect that much help!

thanks everyone specially johnf and yes im taking the Cambridge C1 test wich requires 75% score to pass, but might still give me B2 or B1 certificate if i go below that (hopefully i dont)

also to those that say 220 words isnt much.... ive used english online for a while but not being a native speaker makes it a little harder

im pretty confident on the other parts but ive always hated essays even in spanish since i feel like an actor writing a crappy story on the go even if my teacher ends up saying its good
11
#11
1 Frags +

Spend a little bit of time before you start writing to plan out the content, the points you want to make and how they follow on from each other and how you develop ideas. This should give you a rough idea of how many words you need to get out of each area you want to include. If the word-per-point/area count is very high you're going to be doing a lot of padding which will probably result in a shitty essay, so see if you can add some more meat to the content before you start if that's the case.

This is relevant to English language tests even with short essays because it will allow you to have shorter sentences with a clear structure instead of rambling long sentences (that will put your grammatical skills under pressure) searching for something to say just to hit the word target.

Spend a little bit of time before you start writing to plan out the content, the points you want to make and how they follow on from each other and how you develop ideas. This should give you a rough idea of how many words you need to get out of each area you want to include. If the word-per-point/area count is very high you're going to be doing a lot of padding which will probably result in a shitty essay, so see if you can add some more meat to the content before you start if that's the case.

This is relevant to English language tests even with short essays because it will allow you to have shorter sentences with a clear structure instead of rambling long sentences (that will put your grammatical skills under pressure) searching for something to say just to hit the word target.
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#12
5 Frags +

never start your conclusion with "in conclusion"

never start your conclusion with "in conclusion"
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#13
0 Frags +
Totlesnever start your conclusion with "in conclusion"

this

just write another paragraph that states it in detail

[quote=Totles]never start your conclusion with "in conclusion"[/quote]

this

just write another paragraph that states it in detail
14
#14
2 Frags +
CrimsoNEssays that you do not know the topic to until the day you write it are always nerve-racking. However, the 220-word-minimum soothes it out a little. Here's my approach to this (all my opinion)

1. Topic paragraph: Address the problem/situation you are given in your own words. Usually a brief and short paragraph.
2. Body paragraph 1: State the origin of the problem/situation. Generally a very long paragraph. Remember to make key points and use concrete evidence.
3. Body paragraph 2: Who is this problem/situation affecting? Again, give clear examples on who they are, and why they are being affected.
4. Body paragraph 3: What (in your opinion) is the best solution? Why? Give clear key points on why it will work, and support them with good evidence.
5. Conclusion: Summarize the entire essay. This is usually the easiest one to write, but it is still needed. Put your personal thoughts in here as well.

I cannot gaurentee that this will give you an A. However, these are just my thoughts on this. Good luck on the essay,my man.

how the hell could you ever write 5 paragraphs and use only 260 words?

[quote=CrimsoN]Essays that you do not know the topic to until the day you write it are always nerve-racking. However, the 220-word-minimum soothes it out a little. Here's my approach to this (all my opinion)

1. Topic paragraph: Address the problem/situation you are given in your own words. Usually a brief and short paragraph.
2. Body paragraph 1: State the origin of the problem/situation. Generally a very long paragraph. Remember to make key points and use concrete evidence.
3. Body paragraph 2: Who is this problem/situation affecting? Again, give clear examples on who they are, and why they are being affected.
4. Body paragraph 3: What (in your opinion) is the best solution? Why? Give clear key points on why it will work, and support them with good evidence.
5. Conclusion: Summarize the entire essay. This is usually the easiest one to write, but it is still needed. Put your personal thoughts in here as well.

I cannot gaurentee that this will give you an A. However, these are just my thoughts on this. Good luck on the essay,my man.[/quote]

how the hell could you ever write 5 paragraphs and use only 260 words?
15
#15
0 Frags +

i think it's like a general advice on writing essays as opposed to just a 3 paragraph one or whatever the fuck can even fit into 260 words

i think it's like a general advice on writing essays as opposed to just a 3 paragraph one or whatever the fuck can even fit into 260 words
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#16
1 Frags +
saamhow the hell could you ever write 5 paragraphs and use only 260 words?

^
260 is like a page double spaced, if this were part of a longer essay that'd be less than 2 paragraphs

[quote=saam]how the hell could you ever write 5 paragraphs and use only 260 words?[/quote]
^
260 is like a page double spaced, if this were part of a longer essay that'd be less than 2 paragraphs
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#17
0 Frags +

Make sure to elaborate, without going off track with your paper.

Make sure to elaborate, without going off track with your paper.
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#18
-5 Frags +

I don't think you have much to worry about tbh, judging from your level of English.

I don't think you have much to worry about tbh, judging from your level of English.
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#19
-2 Frags +

just be yourself

just be yourself
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#20
-3 Frags +

Write in a verbose and exaggerating manner. That should help increase your word count

Write in a verbose and exaggerating manner. That should help increase your word count
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#21
5 Frags +

Ye guys great advice for the guy who had an exam 3 years ago. Im sure he's gonna be thrilled with the new responses for his 3rd resit in a row.

Ye guys great advice for the guy who had an exam 3 years ago. Im sure he's gonna be thrilled with the new responses for his 3rd resit in a row.
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#22
1 Frags +

people have given good advice on the structure but one tip i cannot emphasize enough is to BE SPECIFIC with your supporting examples in the essay. the biggest reason why people don't do well on essays isn't because they can't write like a columnist or author (95% of people can't string together an emotionally resounding sentence worth a damn and that's fine, it's not that important), nor is it because they misunderstand the basic structure of the essay. It's because they're too vague. The thesis isn't specific or the supporting evidence they give isn't specific enough to tie back into the thesis they wrote. vagueness is the enemy. vagueness is the bane of writing essays the same way speeding through problems too fast is the bane of doing math tests.

people have given good advice on the structure but one tip i cannot emphasize enough is to BE SPECIFIC with your supporting examples in the essay. the biggest reason why people don't do well on essays isn't because they can't write like a columnist or author (95% of people can't string together an emotionally resounding sentence worth a damn and that's fine, it's not that important), nor is it because they misunderstand the basic structure of the essay. It's because they're too vague. The thesis isn't specific or the supporting evidence they give isn't specific enough to tie back into the thesis they wrote. vagueness is the enemy. vagueness is the bane of writing essays the same way speeding through problems too fast is the bane of doing math tests.
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#23
-1 Frags +

give details, make long concise arguments and make sure your transitions from subject to subject are smooth

give details, make long concise arguments and make sure your transitions from subject to subject are smooth
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