readers that a point is important is not the word "important but the words that tell us the substance of the point. Students will find in, writing in College a warm invitation to join the academic community as novice scholars and to approach writing as a meaningful medium of thought and communication. Do this as soon as possible. Five-paragraph essays dont have any counterpart in the real world. It doesnt make an argument. What can a new college student do differently to write well at the college level?
But they're still not happy. Then shell write another background paragraph in which she shows how the conflict over slavery developed over time. Along the way, their perfectly good ideas get mangled or lost. Why dont five-paragraph essays work well for college writing? We will answer that question here, even though it gets us ahead of ourselves in describing the process of writing a paper. Amy Guptill is an Associate Professor of Sociology at The College at Brockport, suny where she has a joint appointment with the Delta College Program, an alternative interdisciplinary General Education option. Other classes call for a more creative or specialized form of writing-there are short story classes, for instance, and business classes where a professor may assign a written sales pitch. She underlines the final sentence, and then writes in the margin, Whats your thesis? Furthermoreand for many high school teachers, this is the crucial issuemany mandatory end-of-grade writing tests and college admissions exams like the SAT II writing test reward writers who follow the five-paragraph essay format. If after all this analysis of the assignment you are still uncertain about what is expected of you, ask your instructor.
In a classic five-paragraph essay, the first paragraph starts with a general statement and ends with a thesis statement containing three points; each body paragraph discusses one of those points in turn; and the final paragraph sums up what the student has written. The New York Times, Dec. In our handout on conclusions, we call these thats my story and Im sticking to it conclusions: they do nothing to engage readers and make them glad they read the essay. We're not describing the way that everyone does go about writing an argument.