“Why should I study history?” This question bothers many students once they are assigned with a history essay. The answer is unique for different people. Some should study this subject just to broaden their minds, others to enter college, still others to develop deductive skills and analytical thinking.
Despite the fact that many people don’t believe historical facts or hypotheses because some of them are really controversial but history still remains one of the basic disciplines of educational programs. Certain secrets of the past we will probably never know. However, this doesn’t mean that we shouldn’t know any historical facts. In this article, you’ll get acquainted with tips on how to write a history essay that will help you to cope with the task.
Tips on How to Write a History Essay
#1 Start from creating a detailed plan
“How can I make a plan when I don’t know the topic?” you may wonder. Our suggestion is to ask your teacher for advice. That way, you’ll reveal all issues that your teacher expects from you. Also, it will be much easier for you to write an essay on the topic when you have an idea of which points to look for. If your teacher can’t tell you points that you should pay attention to, we can suggest you another way. Find in your textbook or in certain web sources information on the topic and analyze how it is structured.
Different authors reveal the same topic from different positions. Remember that you should write a unique history essay. Therefore, you shouldn’t just copy someone’s structure. You need to investigate several sources and take the main points that are discussed from various sources. If you would like to write an essay with the same bullet points as in a specific source, you should present information differently so that it won’t be considered plagiarism.
#2 Find out which facts are not proved yet
When you are writing a history essay, you should find out whether all facts that you would like to use in your paper are ascertained or some of them are just assumptions. You can use both in your essay — assumptions and facts. However, you need to include in your paper information about the basis for the fact or hypothesis. This can be specific historical documents, photos, videos, witnesses or other objects which keep certain information.
Also, you should find experts who have different opinions on specific issues in the context of your topic. You should present the arguments of each of them and explain whose version seems to be more credible in your opinion. It is advisable to specify your position when you are completing any type of an essay and it’s obligatory when you are working on an argumentative essay.
#3 Keep in mind the length of your paper
When you are searching for information, you should keep in mind the amount of pages that you need to complete. Typically, teachers can assign essays that are from 2 to 15 pages long. If you are assigned with a short essay, we’ll recommend you to take a very narrow issue on the topic or make a general overview on the topic. However, it is better to make your history essay more specific. That way it will have more scholarly value.
While you are looking for information, you should know when to stop. The more you know about the topic, the more you are interested about the details and the deeper you plunge into the topic. Though your scholarly curiosity deserves praising, it can bother you when you need to complete short papers. Make notes of what you already found on the topic and estimate how many words specific information will take.
# 4 Include opinions of respectable experts
Your essay should contain the opinion or even several opinions of experts. It is better to take controversial opinions. However, the main condition is to apply to opinions of experts that are well-known in the field and whose opinion is credible for others. When you mention a person, you need to provide the reader with information about the background of this person. Specify full name, occupation and sphere of academic interest.
It’s great if you managed to take an interview of this expert on your own, but it can take a lot of time. You should do this in case you have fast access to the expert or if you have a lot of time before the deadline. Otherwise, don’t forget to specify the original source where you took the quotation. Also, specify the date of its publication so that the reader could understand whether information is up-to-date.
# 5 Don’t write in a boring way
Scholarly style doesn’t mean boring style. Make your essay lively. We are not talking about creating a plot or using slang. We just mean that you shouldn’t use clichés, long complicated sentences, and rarely used words at the attempt to look smart. This style is good for the police report or anything of this nature but it won’t make your essay interesting.
If you decided to use words which you found in a dictionary but they are unfamiliar to you, make sure that you understand these words in the right way and find the examples of usage of such words in specific context. Also, you should take into consideration that specific terms should be explained in your paper.
#6 Complete an adequate conclusion
Many students are so tired when they write the last sentences of their paper so that they can’t think properly on their last words. You shouldn’t slack on quality at the final straight. Have a break before writing the conclusion, take a nap, go for a walk, or drink a cup of tea. Try to do anything you need to relax from writing to reach the revival of your spirit.
Afterward you should reread your entire paper and mention the main points in the conclusion. Please, consider that there should not be new information in the conclusion. You need to restate your ideas and make predictions for the future development of the topic.
#7 Don’t underestimate yourself
Your mood also matters. If you will present your essay as a paper that isn’t worth high scores, your teacher will probably also think that you could do better. If you stay tall and beam with confidence, the audience will like what you say. You know that sometimes the way you approach your work influences the result more than the sense of your paper. Therefore, try to be self-confident. Probably some people could write this paper better than you but this doesn’t mean that your effort means nothing. So, we wish you good luck, inspiration and fun (yes, studying can be also fun ;)).
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