A quite number of students, especially those with inadequate skills, find it challenging to craft a comparison essay, and this affects their academic performance a lot. If you are experiencing such a situation, don’t worry; you will get professional guidance in this article.
What is a comparison essay?
A comparison essay is an academic paper analyzing the similarities between two things that are distinct but belonging to the same category, e.g., comparing two different people working in the same organization to determine their characteristic features.
It is vital to understand that to compare is to examine how things are similar, while to contrast means evaluating how two subjects differ. This type of paper is prevalent at colleges, where instructors test the learners’ comprehension by asking them to compare various things in an exam.
The following is a highlight of comparison essay questions.
- Analyze how the economies of the US and the UK are similar
- Compare Dell and Hp laptops
- Evaluate the similarities between the UK and the Kenyan constitutions
If you want to come up with an excellent paper, you must choose two objects that are different from each other but sharing some standard features. The primary goal of conducting a comparison between two subjects is not to point out the obvious things, but to expose the subtle differences between them. For example, if you want to contrast two pets, it would be better if you compare two dogs rather than a dog and a cat. Highlighting the distinction between the two subjects in the same category would make your readers understand the group better.
Choosing a Topic for a Comparison Essay
Choosing the right topic for your paper is not a straightforward thing. A quite number of students get confused and take a lot of time thinking through before deciding which question to write on. Before you start writing, it is crucial to select an exciting topic that is likely to attract your audience’s attention.
The following is an explanation of the recommendations that you are supposed to follow before you choose a topic.
Understand your audience
Note that an essay can be meaningless if it doesn’t address the interest of your readers. Therefore, it is vital to learn about your intended audience’s needs and come up with a topic that can grab their attention.
Before you choose the right topic, go through a list of items, brainstorm ideas about them, and find the right aspects for comparison.
Choose two subjects/objects belonging to one category
To come up with a useful comparison, evaluate objects that look similar but have some differences. Also, go through the assignment’s prompt to understand it. Next, brainstorm ideas and prepare an outline.
Prepare a list of vital things that the objects/subjects share
Analyze the objects and highlight the key elements that they have in common.
Also, investigate their specific similarities to confirm the already known facts about them. More importantly, avoid selecting a topic whose scope is too broad.
Identify features that are similar to both subjects
Selecting the right topic is based on how the two objects share some characteristics.
Choose two topics that have common similarities
Before you compose your paper, ensure that you have chosen items with similarities to make an excellent comparison.
Select an exciting comparison
Note that choosing two objects/subjects that are exciting means that you will end up writing an exciting piece.
Comparison Topics for Your Essay
Before you settle for any topic, make sure that you select two things that have adequate similarities to enable you to craft an excellent comparison. For instance, comparing cats and dogs make sense than comparing orange and music.
Note that comparing two things requires a lot of attention in studying their common features to achieve an objective outcome. The following is a list of comparison topics for your essay.
- Football versus netball rules
- Android and Windows operating system
- A cat and a dog
- Online purchase versus shopping at malls
- Samsung versus Nokia
- Soap operas versus movies
- Love versus friendship
- Compare two most businesses in your nearby market
- Compare the effectiveness of women and men in managerial positions
Comparison Essay Structure
Before you start writing a comparison essay, it is vital to beware that this paper looks at the similarities between two objects; hence you have to approach it based on this. Also, knowing the structure of this paper can make your work easier.
If you are unfamiliar with composing this piece, the following structure will help you much.
An introduction is the first section of your paper, and its length is usually 1-2 paragraphs. Bear in mind that this section is critical to your paper because it helps your readers develop an interest in reading your piece.
If you want to create an excellent introduction, you must do the following: define your topic, give a brief background about it, and show its significance. Start your introduction with a hook, which is something fascinating or a piece of surprising statistics.
It is advisable to come up with an excellent opening by highlighting the two ideas you are going to compare. Also, give a detailed background about the topic to make your audience understand its context.
A thesis statement is an argument or position you take regarding a particular aspect. Note that the thesis is an essential part of your essay, and, therefore, you should clearly state it. This statement appears as the last sentence in the introduction, and it indicates the primary facts to be discussed in the paper.
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The main body is the backbone of your paper, and it comprises of paragraphs with different points. It is advisable to create an opening sentence that reflects the content of the section. Ensure that you support the ideas you write with factual research. Finally, end the paragraph with a sentence that highlights what has already been discussed. Note that an ideal paragraph length shouldn’t exceed 200 words or 2/3 of a page.
The conclusion refers to the summary of the essay’s main ideas. Restate your thesis by using different words. Finally, making a closing remark that gives an overview of your research.
Compare and Contrast Essay
A compare and contrast essay is a paper analyzing the similarities and differences of the two objects. The two things to be evaluated ought to be in the same category. For instance, you may be asked to compare two domestic animals, such as a goat and sheep.
Writing a compare and contrast essay can be difficult if you are not aware of the steps to follow. In this article, we have given brief guidelines that can help you craft a compare and contrast paper.
Choose appropriate subjects
The subjects you select for comparison must be different but in the same category. For instance, you may choose to compare the two footballers instead of a footballer and a musician. The following is a highlight of some of the subjects you may opt for your comparison.
- Seventh-Day Adventists and Catholicism
- Gym workouts and home workouts
- Home delivery and hospital delivery
- Fermented milk and fresh milk
- A dog and a cat
Brainstorm similarities and differences
If you want to compose a great essay, you must adopt the right strategies. For instance, make a list of the similarities and differences between the two subjects. After that, compose your paper based on the standard features and differences between the two objects.
Articulate your main argument
Once you jot down a list of similarities and differences between the two subjects, you can go ahead and highlight significant ideas to make your main argument.
Organization of the structure
Before you craft your essay, ensure that you organize to write your paper in a manner that can make sense. You can organize your essay based on subjects or ideas.
Organizing a paper based on subjects entails starting with one aspect and then finishing with another. For instance, if you are comparing and contrasting a dog and a cat, discuss the two subjects differently by first stating their similarities and finally indicate their differences.
Also, you may write your essay based on the main ideas. Under this scenario, you may start by highlighting the similarities of the two subjects under a particular theme. Also, you may discuss their differences under a specific idea.
Write an outline
It is vital to crafting an outline based on the structure of your paper. For instance, you may decide your essay structure to have an introduction, four body paragraphs, and a conclusion.
Support your essay with facts
Ensure that you support the content you compose with factual information from research. For example, if you are discussing cats and dogs, use insights from what owners of these pets say to substantiate your claim. Also, if you make a claim about a particular aspect, you must justify it by citing the sources and giving their references.
Use transitional words
Transitional words are crucial in giving your essay an excellent flow from one statement to the other. For example, you may use words, such as similarly, likewise, and both, to compare two subjects. If you want to contrast two objects, you may use words like ‘on the contrary,’ ‘nonetheless,’ ‘whereas,’ etc.
Proofread and edit your work
After composing your paper, read through it to check if there are issues with spelling, grammar, and punctuation. To ensure that your essay is error-free, use grammar checkers, such as Grammarly, to identify and correct mistakes.
Comparison and Contrast Essay Examples
A comparison and contrast essay can be difficult if you are inexperienced in how to craft it. Below are some of the examples of the topics concerning comparison and contrast essays.
- What are the similarities and differences between argumentative and narrative essays?
- Differences and similarities between African and Asian doctors
- Similarities and differences between Christianity and Islam
- Compare and contrast between herbal and conventional medicine
- Similarities and differences between road and rail transport
If you want to familiarize yourself with this piece, please check examples on Peach Essay’s website.
How to Start a Comparison Essay
In a comparison essay, you are supposed to evaluate two subjects and point out their similarities to enable the reader to make an informed opinion about them.
The way you start a comparison essay matters a lot to your audience. It is vital to bear in mind that the nature of an introduction determines whether your readers will develop an interest in your paper or give up on reading it.
Therefore, the following is a highlight of the methods that you can use to grab your audience’s attention.
- Give a brief background about your topic to help your readers understand it
- Start with a story to lead the reader into your topic
- Use a fantastic statement that is either joyful or shocking
- Use statistics to show the magnitude of the problem
How to Write an Introductory Paragraph of a Comparative Essay
An introductory paragraph is an essential part of a comparative essay. If you want to craft a great introduction, it is vital to use sentences that hook or grab the audience’s attention.
Also, note that a thesis statement forms part of an introduction. This statement is crafted as the last sentence of the introductory paragraph, and it is meant to show the writer’s position regarding the topic.
Final Thoughts on Comparison and Contrast Essays
A comparison and contrast essay is essential in helping readers make informed decisions about choosing between two objects or situations. For a reader to decide on what to select, they have to read the essay, weigh its aspects, and then decide in favor of one object or the other.