A Comprehensive Guide to Creating a Compare and Contrast Essay


Any student of English will come across the compare and contrast essay their homework assignment. There is a simple formula to help create the best essay you can. The formula consists of reading, taking notes, creating a plan, writing the essay and editing the essay.


The first step to any good essay is to read all of the texts that you intend to write about. Notes that need to be written include:

  • Similarities between the texts
  • Differences between the texts
  • Anything that stands out in the texts

You can take notes in the form of a list, highlighting the text or by creating a mind map of the main points.


From your notes, it is impossible to select a few points that you would like to write about. Try to choose no more than four main points. These can be written in any order you like but look to link one point to another in order to achieve a flow to the essay. These four points will form the main structure of your compare and contrast essay.


Now that you have the main points you wish to write about the next stage is to write the essay itself. If you start on the main structure of the essay, you can return to the introduction and the conclusion once you have finished the main parts of the essay.

Once you have written the main structure of your compare and contrast essay, the next stage is to edit it. If you have too many words, you may wish to take out a few sentences. If you are way over your word limit, you can take out a point if you wish. There is no limit to how many drafts of your essay you write and need to write only as many as you feel is necessary to write what is needed.

The final part in editing is to go over the final draft to check any spelling and punctuation. Once this part is complete your essay is complete.


Once you have written your essay, the final piece of advice is to put it away for a few days if you are able. Give it another look over as you may wish to make further edits to the final draft before you hand it in. Using this formula is a great way to compile a compare and contrast essay but these tips will also work with any other kind of essay.