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EP 67: How to Write a Compare and Contrast Essay

Writing a compare and contrast essay can be confusing if you don’t know how to begin.

In Episode 67, join Cath Anne as she breaks down the steps on how to write a compare and contrast essay, one of the most popular essay assignments.

Looking for study tips, help with essay writing, or advice on how to be a better student? Welcome to The Homework Help Show, a weekly show where we teach, assist, and offer valuable insights for student life. From study hacks to writing tips, discussions about student mental health to step-by-step guides on academic writing and how to write a resume, we’ve got you covered. Want your questions answered? Write them below or join the conversation on social media using the hashtag #askHHG


Cath Anne: [00:00:00] Are you having a tough time beginning your compare and contrast essay? Let us help. Today we are going to a break down the various components of a compare and contrast essay, one of the most popular essays that you will see in college and university.

Cath Anne: [00:00:20] Hi guys and welcome back to our channel. My name is Cath Anne and this is the Homework Help Show hosted by Homework Help Global. Here on the show we provide you with valuable content for your academic and student life. Now before we jump into the content today I wanted to remind you guys that we are going live every Thursday at 9:00 a.m. Eastern Standard Time on Instagram. We’ve been loving our Instagram lives and loving the opportunity to connect with you guys, people from all around the world. It has been super exciting. We’ve been talking to people from Brazil, from Turkey, from India, here in Canada, and even in the USA. This has been such a wonderful process. And we want to keep connecting with you guys. So make sure that you join me every Thursday at 9:00 a.m. Eastern Standard Time on Instagram live and have a chance to have a quick chat with me. We’ve been connecting with all kinds of people so make sure to join us for that. And just another little reminder before we do get started I would love if you guys could subscribe to our channel and also hit that notification bell. The notification bell is going to tell you when we upload a new content which is usually every Monday morning. So make sure that you don’t miss out on any other amazing academic content to come. OK. Let’s jump in.

Cath Anne: [00:02:01] So throughout your career as a student you are going to encounter all different kinds of essays. And it is important to be familiar with all the different types of essays that are out there. The compare and contrast essay is one that is very popular in high school, in university and college, and it is definitely something that you want to know how to do. In the compare and contrast essay your focus is on comparing and contrasting the similarities and differences of themes, objects, books, ideas, and theories. These types of essays help you to think critically and they allow you to do an in-depth exploration and research into a specific topic.

Cath Anne: [00:02:51] Now let’s begin by discussing how to recognize a compare and contrast essay. It might seem a little bit obvious but I just wanted to break it down a just in case this is your first time ever writing a compare and contrast essay. Of course professors will use certain words to indicate that they want you to write a compare and contrast essay. Of course they’ll be using words like compare contrast. You’ll also look for words like similarities and differences. These words make it easy to recognize that you are going to be writing a compare and contrast essay. Now sometimes the requirement is just that the professor wants you to do a compare essay. Other times they will want you to do a compare and contrast essay. Make sure to pay close attention to the assignment requirements before you begin. There are times that you might use the compare and contrast technique on your own when it isn’t a requirement of an essay. For example you might write some similarities and differences down about two different novels. This might help to inspire you for ideas for an argument that you want to make about a specific topic.

Cath Anne: [00:04:05] One technique that you can use that is super effective for writing a compare and contrast essay is to create a Venn diagram. To make a Venn diagram simply draw two overlapping circles one to represent each topic or idea that you are discussing. In the central component where the circles overlap – this is where you’re going to write the things that each topic has in common. Now assign a topic to each one of the other circles. In these circles you will write the things that make the two topics different. This is a simple visual representation of a compare and contrast essay. As you generate points of comparison, consider the focus of the assignment and you’ll also want to consider the rest of the content that you’re learning in that specific course. Ask yourself if what you’re writing or your argument aligns with the rest of the course material. Ask yourself what does your professor want you to learn by completing this comparison and contrast. Does what your thinking align with the rest of the material that you’ve learned in the class thus far? Are there any clues about what to focus on in the assignment itself? Now, here are some general questions you might want to consider about different topic that might come up in a compare and contrast type of assignment. This is by no means a definitive list. It is simply an idea of what you might expect in a compare and contrast essay.

Cath Anne: [00:05:43] First you might be asked to compare two historical points in time. What do they have in common? When did they occur? What types of events were they? Who was involved? You might compare and contrast two particular theories. What were they about? Did they occur at a certain point in time? Who wrote the theories? You might be asked to compare two pieces of art or two forms of writing. You might ask what mood did they convey? What was the form of the writing or the art? Who wrote them? Who created them? What is their title? You might also be asked to compare and contrast to different people. Who were they? When were they born? What was significant about them? What was their age gender race or religion?

Cath Anne: [00:06:41] These are simply some ideas of types of questions you might ask yourself to generate some evidence for your compare and contrast essay. Now you don’t ever want to forget your thesis when you’re writing an essay. This is one of the most important parts of an essay and we’ve discussed it in length on our channel. We have a variety of videos that you can check out and we will link one right up here just for you. So when you’re writing your compare and contrast essay, you want to make sure that you have a very strong thesis. This is going to act as your roadmap for your reader and for you so you don’t get lost in the shuffle. While you are trying to generate many points for you compare and contrast essay remember your thesis should be specific and to the point. It should tell you and your reader what to expect. And you’re making an argument or an opinion about something in particular. Make sure your thesis is not too broad. Keep it specific.

Cath Anne: [00:07:52] Now there are many many different ways to write a compare and contrast essay. Let’s talk about the most popular one. The point by point method. Let’s break it down. In the point by point method you are going to make two different points after you write your introduction including your thesis statement. First you will create your first point. Point number one you will discuss Topic A in relation to that point. Then you will create a second point. Point Number 1 where you discuss Topic B and how it relates to that point. Then you will compare and contrast. You will discuss how Topic A and Topic B relate to that first point. You’ll then do this again you’ll make a second point or point two.

Cath Anne: [00:08:44] Discuss topic A. Then point two again and discuss Topic B. You’ll then compare and contrast Topic A and Topic B and how they both relate to your second point. You’ll continue this throughout the course of your essay, making various points and comparing and contrasting how Topic A and Topic B relate to those specific points. You can do this as many times as you want throughout your essay. However a general rule of thumb is to keep your essay narrow and focus on three specific points. Point One, Point Two, Point Three, then compare and contrast.

Cath Anne: [00:09:29] OK guys that is it for this video. I hope this video was of benefit and that it was helpful to you. Now if you do need any help with your comparing contrast essays make sure to connect with us here at Homework Help Global. We offer a variety of services from editing to ghost writing if that is something that you need and we’d been more than happy to help you out with all of your comparing and contrast needs.

Cath Anne: [00:09:58] We’ll link all of our information in the description box below so you can connect with us if you need to.

Cath Anne: [00:10:05] OK guys. That is it for me this week. As always we absolutely love to hear from you. Jump into the comments section below and let me know if this was helpful. Let me know if there’s anything else you’d like to know about compare and contrast essays or if you decide to use the Venn diagram in the process of writing your compare and contrast essay. And of course if you liked this video and found it helpful make sure to give it a thumbs up and subscribe to our channel. As always you can connect with us on social media. We’re on Instagram, Facebook, YouTube of course. We have our student influencers podcast on Anchor, Apple iTunes, as well as Spotify. All of our information is linked and listed in the description box below. OK guys thanks again so much for connecting with me. Can’t wait to see you again soon. Talk soon and take care.