How to Write a First-Class Essay



Every university lecturer has to grapple with the task of reading and assigning grades to hundreds of student essays on a regular basis. This can be a wearisome and thankless task, especially when there is little to distinguish one paper from the next. Given its tedious nature, this chore is often put off until more interesting work is out of the way – which means that your lovingly crafted essay may be marked by a tired, grouchy lecturer in the early hours of the morning.


As a student aiming for a first-class grade, then, your challenge is to submit a piece of work that really stands out from the pile and captures your examiner's attention.


Amongst other things, this means that:

  • your introductory paragraphs must be clear, concise and compelling;
  • the central thesis of your paper should be clearly stated so that the reader knows where your argument is heading;
  • every step in the argument should be clearly signposted so that the reader is never left wondering why a particular point is being made.

Among the most commonly cited weaknesses of undergraduate essays are the following:

  • poor planning
  • weak structure
  • failure to address the question
  • lack of a clear thesis
  • deviation from the topic
  • summarising without elaboration
  • lack of critical analysis
  • insufficient development of ideas
  • failure to present opposing arguments
  • statements unsupported by evidence
  • lack of background reading
  • poor transitions between paragraphs

If you can write essays that avoid these common pitfalls, you are well on your way to knowing how to write a first-class essay!

Amongst the qualities most indicative of a first-class essay are the following:

  • comprehensive and effective answer to the question
  • strong structure and clear signposting maintained throughout
  • precise, focused argument
  • lucid style and outstanding professional standard of English
  • wide-ranging knowledge and exceptional understanding of relevant material
  • sound apprehension of context and rationale of ideas
  • awareness of the academic debate surrounding the subject
  • critical appraisal of a variety of relevant sources
  • confident handling of analytical terms and critical concepts
  • evidence of independence of thought and/or original thinking
  • accurate analysis and effective criticism of others' arguments
  • professional presentation, with footnotes and bibliography of a professional, scholarly standard

To find out how Essay Writing Service UK can help you to write a first-class essay, take a look at our essay writing page. If you are looking for help with a dissertation, we have a variety of solutions available to assist you, from dissertation proposal to conclusion.

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