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The Best Way to Organize Your Compare-And-Contrast Essay

Depending on the type of essay you are writing, there can be a number of ways in which you can organize your content so that you efficiently and effectively express your main ideas in manner that makes your essay a great read. If you are working on a compare and contrast paper there are generally two ways you can go about organizing the content: the block approach and the point by point approach. Here’s what you need to know:

Block Approach Organization Style

This approach is most effective when you are writing shorter essays dealing with something that may be in the same class. For instance, this could be used when comparing and contrasting two types of fruit trees. The body paragraphs are organized by discussing on subject, point by point, before moving on to the next subject.

An example of this kind of organization approach would look like the following:

  1. Start with an introductory paragraph stating two or more subjects that are being compared then lead up to your thesis statement.
  2. The first body paragraph should discuss the first point of the first subject, the second body paragraph should discuss the second point of the first subject, and the third body paragraph should discuss the third point of the first subject.
  3. The fourth body paragraph would transition to discuss the first point of the second subject and so forth.
  4. After six body paragraphs you would include a conclusion that does not simply repeat claims or adds new content, but instead emphasizes the importance of the similarities or differences you have brought up in the essay.

Point By Point Organization Style

This style is most effective when you are writing longer essays that compare and contrast larger pieces, such as novels, short stories, or articles. The body paragraphs of this kind of work are organized by discussing one point at a time and explaining how it applies to each of the subject pieces before moving on to the next point.

An example of this kind of organization approach would look like the following:

  1. Start with an introduction that brings up two or more subjects that are being compared then lead up to your thesis statement.
  2. The first body paragraph should discuss the first point of both subjects, stating the similarities and difference of the point in each subject; the second body paragraph does the same and should discuss the second point of both subjects, and so forth.
  3. Again, without simply repeating claims or adding new content, you should discuss the importance of the similarities or differences between the two subjects as they relate to the thesis statement.

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