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Friday, 11 August 2006

A crash course in essay writing

I’m glad to hear that your computer is working well after the operating system was reinstalled. I hope you’ll be able to access the internet soon, so you don’t have to keep going back to the internet cafĂ© every time you want to post something on your blog.

So you told everyone about why you study English, did you? I think it’s great to have a goal and work towards it. For you, and the two other students who want to study abroad, that means you will probably have to prepare for an exam.

I like many of the ideas in your composition, and you used lots of nice examples, too. I believe, the key to good writing is ideas. Always spend time noting down ideas before you start writing, so you can choose the best ones to include.

Next, you have to consider structure and organisation. I’ve decided not to ‘correct’ your writing, but I’d like to show you a useful essay outline which you could use to help structure your compositions. This is only a suggestion, but it’s one which many of my IELTS students find helpful when writing short, academic style essays of about 250 words. I've divided it into 3 parts: Introduction, Body and Conclusion. Useful language is written in italics.

- Include a short general statement to introduce the topic
- Include a 'thesis statement' (this is your opinion – make sure it is directly related to the question)
(In this essay I will give reasons why I (completely/mostly/partly) agree/disagree…)

Body Paragraph(s)
- Include a 'topic sentence' at the beginning of each paragraph (to introduce the main idea of the paragraph)
(Firstly, Secondly, On the other hand etc)
- Include supporting sentences and examples, which are directly related to the 'topic sentence'
(For example, For instance, Such as)

Repeat Body Paragraph for each main point.

- Include a brief summary of the main points of the essay. Do not include any new ideas.
(In brief, To sum up, In conclusion etc)
- Include a ‘final thought’ (something for the reader to consider after finishing your essay – not always necessary)

I hope this crash course helps. Have a great weekend!


Today’s useful English

(to) keep doing something

(to) tell someone something

(to) have a goal/target

(to) work towards a goal/target

(to) prepare for an exam/test/interview

a crash course (in something)


Hi Mr Davies, please allow me to cali you Lewise. I read your comment after reading Jenny blog.and I must say I LEARNED A LOT from Jenny's mistakes and i hope you carry on correcting her writting so "we" as students of learning English as a second language know the different between the right word or wrong word.Today I received the result of my ESOL (ENGLISH FOR SPEAKING OF ENGLISH OF OTHER LANGUSGES).I obtained pass in Speaking and writing but I was week in Reading English in Use and Listening, SO THE GENERAL RESULT was FAIL/drade E.i was not upset of my result because this is not going to improve my language skill,instead I put on my computer "which is virouse free..."so far"..) WWW.BBCWORLDSERVICE/LEARNINGENGLISH and i started to study the English again.I felt good. i wonder if you could comment about your teaching experience did you found that some of your students did well in the class but they fail in finall exam?

it is very practical! I rewrote it and fell better now!

hello Lewis, millions thank you for the suggestions!!!!! my weakist point is alway to write essys. i have taken english english exams and only i failed the writing. i will try hard to bear your suggestions in my mind next time. have a smashing weeekend!!!!!!!

Thanks for your comment Amore. It is true that sometimes students who do well in class have problems when they take the test. It's also true that students who seem to struggle in the class actually do well in exams. The most important thing is to keep trying.

im very glad for these information about writing essays though i know these information because im a graduate of Faculty of Arts english DEP. but im still glad to refresh my memory and gain much exeperience thanks alot again and i'd like to be a member with you

I just started tha course english writting from here. thanks for the course without charging becourse having difficulties.

I proud to learn to write essay through BBC. I am doing my under graduate of computer science, in my field communication skills and knowledge in english is very essential. so from this moment i have started to write in english. i convey my thanks to bbc through this mail.

I very much appreciate bbc learning English because,this is the excellent way to improve our enlish.Since January 2008 i have been studying english too hard for taking ielts.At last i found it.GOD's month mY exam,so i have to study well as i can.still writing makes me i would like to start my writing through BBC. many thanks to BBC TEACHERS

Dear Lewis , thank you for helping us, I am wondering if you can help me with my main problem that I am confuse about the topic sentence and thesis statement. If you doing mind to explain it comprehensivelY ? I am grateful for helping in advance

millions of million thanxx ppl,iam very glad 2see this on internet all this ideas together mabey i can enhance my english writing eassy manner,bcz i always struggle wit this during exame

Sir, Goodday ! You will be glad happy with great family. This is good and strong faceable vaule of English Leanguage improve and for exam. work sometime I feel lowvaule against from Enlisgh. But slowly I take improve this Leanguage with your cooperate. Nice to meet you on this comment box. Thanks & Regards, Asgher

Dear lewis Davies I have many problems learning english...i am very weak in vocabularies.I envy who is fluent in english..because i want to take IELTS text..but i don't have self-confidence to do it well..would you give me some suggestions? I will be looking forward to you replay. regards

i am writing to inform to you that i have read the whole information which you have presented to me it is not doubt excellent

Thanks for all your contributions. This blog has now closed and can no longer accept new comments.

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