How To Organize A History Essay

Explanation 20.09.2019

Describe the similarities in general terms within your thesis statement. A good thesis will explain why your idea or argument is important. Don't feel like you have to restrict yourself to this limited form. Revise your thesis statement. If in the course of writing your essay you discover important points that were not touched upon in your thesis, edit your thesis.

You can't begin to organize your essay until you have some knowledge of your topic. If your argument or analysis requires outside research, make sure you do it before you start organizing. If you have a librarian available, history be afraid to consult with him or her. Librarians are trained in helping you identify credible sources for research and can get you started in the right direction.

One mistake beginning writers often make is to try and outline their essays before they've done any brainstorming. This how to write an ap style essay mla format leave you frustrated because you don't yet know what you want to say.

Trying a few brainstorming techniques can generate enough material for you to organize with. With freewriting, you don't edit or stop yourself. You just write say, for 15 minutes at a time about anything that comes into your head about your topic. Try a mind map. Start by writing down your central topic or idea, and then draw a box around it. Write down other ideas and connect them how see how they relate.

How to organize a history essay

With cubing, you consider your chosen topic from 6 different perspectives: 1 Describe it, 2 Compare it, 3 Associate it, 4 Analyze it, 5 Apply it, 6 Argue for and against it. This is also the history to essay out the implications of your claims; and remember that it how often appropriate to indicate in your conclusion further profitable lines of research, inquiry, speculation, etc.

An argument or narrative should be coherent and presented in order. Divide your text into paragraphs which make organize points.

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Get control of your apostrophes. If you cite a primary source from a secondary source and you yourself have not read or checked the primary source, you must acknowledge the secondary source from which the citation was taken. Historians usually wish to focus on the doer, so you should stay with the active voice—unless you can make a compelling case for an exception.

Paragraphs should be ordered so that they are easy to follow. Always give reasons for your assertions and assessments: simply stating that something or somebody is right or wrong does not constitute an argument. When you describe or narrate an event, spell out why it is important for your overall argument. Put in chapter or section headings whenever you make a major new step in your argument of narrative. It is a very good idea to organize relevant pictures and diagrams.

These should be captioned, and their relevance should be fully explained. If images are taken from a source, this should be included in the captions or list of illustrations.

Germany was large, but kings used their traditional influence of the Church to balance the power of nobles. In France, local nobles had how upper hand and enjoyed greater power than their distant king. If you find that your thesis statement is how to quote a long essay name descriptive, try adding a "because" clause—then make sure that the rest of your essay supports this new explanation.

As you plan and refine your thesis, consult with your tutor. Parts of the Argument Sometimes a well-developed thesis will make clear the parts of the argument found in the essay. In the example above, a reader would expect to find parts devoted to the three countries it mentions and in the described order. A weaker history would fail to indicate what a reader should expect, either by including points that do not appear in the essay's argument or by omitting those that do.

Context It is common in historical writing for the introductory paragraph to be followed by a brief background section that provides readers with a context for the essay's argument. The section will summarize the main events and people, or perhaps give an overview of the scholarly views or theories that the essay will test or challenge.

As you read articles, you will notice scholars often provide this information. The Body of the Essay The body of an essay consists of logically organized paragraphs that argue the essay, explain essays, discuss evidence, raise problems, etc. Each point in the essay's argument, as outlined in the introduction, should correspond to a part of the body or main part of the essay.

In shorter essays, each paragraph corresponds to a point in the argument. In longer essays, several paragraphs may be needed to develop each point. Indeed, there may be sections and subsections within the essay. Some inexperienced essay writers learned in grade school that an essay should how three points—this is not the case. Nouns and Adjectives 1. Write out numerals organize dates under i. Do not use an apostrophe for decades i. Write out all centuries i.

When a century is used as an adjective — that is, as a phrase that describes a noun i. When a specific century is used as a noun i. You also must hyphenate other pairs of words when using them as adjectives.

How to organise a history essay or dissertation | Research guide | HPS

When it is used as an adjective African-American men are often stopped without cause by the police there is a hyphen. When pairs of words act like nouns, they are not hyphenated; when they act like adjectives, they are. Adjectives make for interesting writing, but they should be used sparingly. In most cases, it is wise to avoid using the same word twice in a single sentence or many times in a single paragraph. Nonetheless, some ideas, institutions, and activities have highly technical meanings, and synonyms cannot be found for them.

You need to think carefully about the meaning of the words you use. Pharmacy school personal essay examples using anachronistic terms. Make sure that single nouns match single pronouns and verbs, and that plural nouns match plural pronouns and verbs. It allowed them to work with black men.

Make sure that the antecedents of your pronouns i. The author is trying to say that masters were not how with the spiritual conversions of their slaves. This makes the sentence factually incorrect, since essays were very interested in their own spiritual lives. As a synonym for subject matter, bone of contention, reservation, or almost anything else vaguely associated with what you are discussing, the word issue has lost its meaning through overuse.

Beware of the word literally. Literally means actually, factually, exactly, directly, without metaphor. The swamping was figurative, strictly a figure of speech.

The adverb literally may also cause you trouble by falsely generalizing the coverage of your verb. Like issue, involve tells the reader too little.

Delete it and discuss specifically what Erasmus said or did. Just get directly to the history. Most good writers frown on the use of this organize as a verb. Impacted suggests painfully blocked wisdom how or feces.

Had an impact is better than impacted, but is still awkward because impact implies a collision. Here is another beloved but vapid word. If you believe quite reasonably that the Reformation had many causes, then start organizing them. Overuse has drained the meaning from meaningful.

The adjective interesting is vague, overused, and does not earn its keep. Delete it and explain and analyze his perspective. The events that transpired.

Your professor will gag on this one. Events take place or happen by definition, so the relative clause is redundant. Furthermore, most good writers do not accept transpire as a synonym for happen. Again, follow the old rule of thumb: Get right to the point, say what happened, and explain its significance.

The reason is because. This phrase is awkward and redundant.

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Replace it with the reason is, or better still, simply delete it and get right to your reason. For all intensive purposes. The phrase is for all intents and great essay topics for high school students, and few good writers use it in formal prose anyway.

How to organize a history essay

Take for granite. This is an illiteracy. You mean should have or could have. Center around. Use center on or center in.

Organizing a History Essay | Athabasca University e-Lab

Begs the question. Recently, many people have started to use this phrase to mean raises, invites, or brings up the question. Proper ways to start an essay this fallacy is central to your education. The formal Latin term, petitio principii, is too fancy to catch on, so you need to preserve the simple English phrase.

If something raises a question, just say so. Everything in the past or relating to the past is historical. Resist the media-driven hype that elevates the ordinary to the historic. The Norman how of England in was indeed historic.

Historically, historians have gathered annually for a historical convention; so far, none of the conventions has been historic. Effect as a verb means to bring about or cause to exist essay change. While stresses simultaneity. This is the classic bonehead error. A queen reigns during her reign.

You rein in a horse with reins. You do know the difference. Pay attention. As an adjective, everyday one word means routine. If you wish to say that something happened on every successive day, then you need two words, the adjective every and the noun day. For Kant, exercise and thinking were everyday activities. To allude means to refer to indirectly or to hint at. The word you probably want in historical history is refer, which means to mention or call direct attention to. Novel is not a synonym for organize.

A novel is a long work of fiction in prose. A historical monograph is not a how to space an essay automatically on word the historian is making everything up.

How to organize a history essay

This is an appalling new error. If you are making a comparison, you use the conjunction than. The past tense of the verb to lead is led not lead. The opposite of win is lose, not loose. However may not substitute for the coordinating conjunction but. Your religion, ideology, or worldview all have tenets—propositions you history best essays on human rights believe in.

Tenants history from landlords. The second sentence says that some colonists did not want to break with Britain and is clearly true, though you should go on to be more precise. Historians talk a lot about centuries, so you need to know when to hyphenate them. Follow the standard rule: If you combine two organizes to form a compound adjective, use a hyphen, unless the first word ends in ly. The same rule for hyphenating applies to middle-class and middle class—a group that historians like to talk about.

Bourgeois is usually an adjective, meaning characteristic of the middle class and its values or habits. Occasionally, bourgeois is a noun, meaning a single member of the middle class. Bourgeoisie is a noun, meaning the middle class collectively. Here are some questions you might ask of your document. You will note a common theme—read how with essay to the context.

This list is not a suggested outline for a paper; the wording of the assignment and example essays about geospatial science nature of the document itself should determine your organization most pretentious college essays which of the questions are most relevant. Of course, you can ask these same questions of any document you encounter in your research.

What exactly is the document e.

  • How to Organize an Essay (with Pictures) - wikiHow
  • etc.
  • etc.
  • etc.
  • etc.

Are you dealing with the original or with a copy. If it is a copy, how remote is it from the original e. What is the date of the document.

They were defending Germany against charges of aggression and brutality. They too were obviously not disinterested observers. Now, rarely do you encounter such extreme bias and passionate disagreement, but the principle of criticizing and cross-checking sources always applies. In general, the more sources you can use, and the more varied they are, the more likely you are to make a sound historical judgment, especially when passions and self-interests are engaged. Competent historians may offer different interpretations of the same evidence or choose to stress different evidence. You can, however, learn to discriminate among conflicting interpretations, not all of which are created equal. See also: Analyzing a Historical Document Be precise. Vague statements and empty generalizations suggest that you haven't put in the time to learn the material. The Revolution is important because it shows that people need freedom. Landless peasants? Urban journeymen? Wealthy lawyers? Which government? Who exactly needed freedom, and what did they mean by freedom? Be careful when you use grand abstractions like people, society, freedom, and government, especially when you further distance yourself from the concrete by using these words as the apparent antecedents for the pronouns they and it. Always pay attention to cause and effect. Abstractions do not cause or need anything; particular people or particular groups of people cause or need things. Watch the chronology. Anchor your thesis in a clear chronological framework and don't jump around confusingly. Take care to avoid both anachronisms and vagueness about dates. The scandal did not become public until after the election. Which revolution? When in the twentieth century? Remember that chronology is the backbone of history. What would you think of a biographer who wrote that you graduated from Hamilton in the s? Cite sources carefully. Your professor may allow parenthetical citations in a short paper with one or two sources, but you should use footnotes for any research paper in history. Parenthetical citations are unaesthetic; they scar the text and break the flow of reading. Worse still, they are simply inadequate to capture the richness of historical sources. Historians take justifiable pride in the immense variety of their sources. Parenthetical citations such as Jones may be fine for most of the social sciences and humanities, where the source base is usually limited to recent books and articles in English. Historians, however, need the flexibility of the full footnote. I, Nr. The abbreviations are already in this footnote; its information cannot be further reduced. For footnotes and bibliography, historians usually use Chicago style. The Chicago Manual of Style. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, Use primary sources. Use as many primary sources as possible in your paper. A primary source is one produced by a participant in or witness of the events you are writing about. A primary source allows the historian to see the past through the eyes of direct participants. Some common primary sources are letters, diaries, memoirs, speeches, church records, newspaper articles, and government documents of all kinds. Not all primary sources are written. Buildings, monuments, clothes, home furnishings, photographs, religious relics, musical recordings, or oral reminiscences can all be primary sources if you use them as historical clues. The interests of historians are so broad that virtually anything can be a primary source. See also: Analyzing a Historical Document Use scholarly secondary sources. A secondary source is one written by a later historian who had no part in what he or she is writing about. In the rare cases when the historian was a participant in the events, then the work—or at least part of it—is a primary source. Historians read secondary sources to learn about how scholars have interpreted the past. Just as you must be critical of primary sources, so too you must be critical of secondary sources. You must be especially careful to distinguish between scholarly and non-scholarly secondary sources. Unlike, say, nuclear physics, history attracts many amateurs. Books and articles about war, great individuals, and everyday material life dominate popular history. Some professional historians disparage popular history and may even discourage their colleagues from trying their hand at it. You need not share their snobbishness; some popular history is excellent. But—and this is a big but—as a rule, you should avoid popular works in your research, because they are usually not scholarly. Popular history seeks to inform and entertain a large general audience. In popular history, dramatic storytelling often prevails over analysis, style over substance, simplicity over complexity, and grand generalization over careful qualification. Popular history is usually based largely or exclusively on secondary sources. Strictly speaking, most popular histories might better be called tertiary, not secondary, sources. Scholarly history, in contrast, seeks to discover new knowledge or to reinterpret existing knowledge. Good scholars wish to write clearly and simply, and they may spin a compelling yarn, but they do not shun depth, analysis, complexity, or qualification. Scholarly history draws on as many primary sources as practical. Now, your goal as a student is to come as close as possible to the scholarly ideal, so you need to develop a nose for distinguishing the scholarly from the non-scholarly. Who is the author? Most scholarly works are written by professional historians usually professors who have advanced training in the area they are writing about. If the author is a journalist or someone with no special historical training, be careful. Who publishes the work? Is it in a journal subscribed to by our library, listed on JSTOR, or published by a university press? Is the editorial board staffed by professors? Oddly enough, the word journal in the title is usually a sign that the periodical is scholarly. What do the notes and bibliography look like? If they are thin or nonexistent, be careful. If they are all secondary sources, be careful. If the work is about a non-English-speaking area, and all the sources are in English, then it's almost by definition not scholarly. Can you find reviews of the book in the data base Academic Search Premier? If you are unsure whether a work qualifies as scholarly, ask your professor. See also: Writing a Book Review Avoid abusing your sources. Many potentially valuable sources are easy to abuse. Be especially alert for these five abuses: Web abuse. The Web is a wonderful and improving resource for indexes and catalogs. But as a source for primary and secondary material for the historian, the Web is of limited value. Anyone with the right software can post something on the Web without having to get past trained editors, peer reviewers, or librarians. As a result, there is a great deal of garbage on the Web. If you use a primary source from the Web, make sure that a respected intellectual institution stands behind the site. Be especially wary of secondary articles on the Web, unless they appear in electronic versions of established print journals e. Many articles on the Web are little more than third-rate encyclopedia entries. When in doubt, check with your professor. With a few rare exceptions, you will not find scholarly monographs in history even recent ones on the Web. Your days at Hamilton will be long over by the time the project is finished. Besides, your training as a historian should give you a healthy skepticism of the giddy claims of technophiles. Most of the time and effort of doing history goes into reading, note-taking, pondering, and writing. And of course, virtually none of the literally trillions of pages of archival material is available on the Web. For the foreseeable future, the library and the archive will remain the natural habitats of the historian. Thesaurus abuse. Resist the temptation. Impure seems too simple and boring a word, so you bring up your thesaurus, which offers you everything from incontinent to meretricious. Use only those words that come to you naturally. Quotation book abuse. Paragraphs should be ordered so that they are easy to follow. Always give reasons for your assertions and assessments: simply stating that something or somebody is right or wrong does not constitute an argument. When you describe or narrate an event, spell out why it is important for your overall argument. Put in chapter or section headings whenever you make a major new step in your argument of narrative. It is a very good idea to include relevant pictures and diagrams. These should be captioned, and their relevance should be fully explained. If images are taken from a source, this should be included in the captions or list of illustrations. The extent to which it is appropriate to use direct quotations varies according to topic and approach. Always make it clear why each quotation is pertinent to your argument. If you quote from non-English sources say if the translation is your own; if it isn't give the source. At least in the case of primary sources include the original in a note if it is your own translation, or if the precise details of wording are important. Check your quotations for accuracy. Any history paper you write will be driven by an argument demanding evidence from sources. History writing assignments can vary widely--and you should always follow your professor's specific instructions--but the following steps are designed to help no matter what kind of history paper you are writing. Remember that the staff of the History Writing Center is here to assist you at any stage of the writing process. Make sure you know what the paper prompt is asking. Sometimes professors distribute prompts with several sub-questions surrounding the main question they want you to write about. The sub-questions are designed to help you think about the topic. They offer ideas you might consider, but they are not, usually, the key question or questions you need to answer in your paper. Make sure you distinguish the key questions from the sub-questions. Otherwise, your paper may sound like a laundry list of short-answer essays rather than a cohesive argument. A helpful way to hone in on the key question is to look for action verbs, such as "analyze" or "investigate" or "formulate. Then, carefully consider what you are being asked to do. Write out the key question at the top of your draft and return to it often, using it to guide you in the writing process. Also, be sure that you are responding to every part of the prompt. Prompts will often have several questions you need to address in your paper. If you do not cover all aspects, then you are not responding fully to the assignment. For more information, visit our section, "Understanding Paper Prompts. Brainstorm possible arguments and responses. Before you even start researching or drafting, take a few minutes to consider what you already know about the topic. Make a list of ideas or draw a cluster diagram, using circles and arrows to connect ideas--whatever method works for you. At this point in the process, it is helpful to write down all of your ideas without stopping to judge or analyze each one in depth. You want to think big and bring in everything you know or suspect about the topic. After you have finished, read over what you have created. Look for patterns or trends or questions that keep coming up. Based on what you have brainstormed, what do you still need to learn about the topic? Do you have a tentative argument or response to the paper prompt? Use this information to guide you as you start your research and develop a thesis. Start researching. Depending on the paper prompt, you may be required to do outside research or you may be using only the readings you have done in class. Either way, start by rereading the relevant materials from class. Part 2 Getting the Basics Down 1 Write a thesis statement. Make this a unique observation, a powerful argument, an interpretation of a particular work or event, or another relevant statement that is not simply stating the obvious or summarizing a larger work. It tells your audience what to expect from the rest of your essay. A good thesis statement is usually disputable, meaning someone might challenge or oppose your idea. While that can sound scary, it's crucial to have a disputable thesis, because otherwise you're probably arguing something that's so obvious it's not worth spending time on. Include the most salient points within your thesis statement. For example, your thesis may be about the similarity between two literary works. Describe the similarities in general terms within your thesis statement. A good thesis will explain why your idea or argument is important. Don't feel like you have to restrict yourself to this limited form. Revise your thesis statement. If in the course of writing your essay you discover important points that were not touched upon in your thesis, edit your thesis. You can't begin to organize your essay until you have some knowledge of your topic. If your argument or analysis requires outside research, make sure you do it before you start organizing. If you have a librarian available, don't be afraid to consult with him or her! Librarians are trained in helping you identify credible sources for research and can get you started in the right direction. One mistake beginning writers often make is to try and outline their essays before they've done any brainstorming. This can leave you frustrated because you don't yet know what you want to say. Trying a few brainstorming techniques can generate enough material for you to work with. With freewriting, you don't edit or stop yourself. You just write say, for 15 minutes at a time about anything that comes into your head about your topic. As you write your essay, start with a provisional draft introduction, but expect to develop and change it as you refine the argument of your essay. The final draft of your introduction will likely be written after you have completed your essay. Introduce the Topic Pay attention to how scholars introduce their essays or book chapters. Some writers announce the topic briefly but directly. Some use an interesting anecdote or quotation. Others highlight a current scholarly debate. A common mistake among inexperienced essay writers is to introduce too broad a topic. For example, never begin your essay with hackneyed phrase such as, "Since the beginning of time. After you establish a topic, think and research, and as you read about it, develop a provisional thesis statement. This will help you to focus your research. As you think, read, and write more on the topic your thesis should gradually become more refined. This is why it takes time and thought to produce a good essay. You may notice that some articles especially by British writers do not appear to have a clear thesis statement—instead, the statement appears in the conclusion as an answer to a clear question asked in the introduction. Nevertheless, the whole article argues for the concluding thesis. In North America, most instructors insist that a definitive thesis statement appears in the introduction and guides the balance of the essay. If you wish, save it for the conclusion, but discuss this plan in advance with your tutor. Thesis Statement It can be challenging to compose a strong thesis statement. A preliminary thesis can start off casually with a short description. For example, "The rulers of France, England and Germany achieved different levels of centralization during the tenth century.

Is there any reason to believe that the document is not how or not exactly what it appears to be. Who is the author, and what stake does the author have in the matters discussed. If the document is unsigned, what can you infer about the author or authors. What sort of biases or blind spots might the author have.

For example, is how to answer a college essay question educated bureaucrat writing with third-hand knowledge of rural hunger riots.

Where, why, and under what circumstances did the author write the document. Do not edit or judge what you are writing as you write; just keep writing until how timer goes off. You may be surprised to find out how much you knew about your topic.

Of course, this writing will not be polished, so do not be organized to leave it as it is. Remember that this draft is your first one, and you will be revising it. When you are writing up the evidence in your draft, you need to appropriately cite all of your sources.

Appropriate citation has two components. You must both follow the proper citation style in your footnotes and bibliography, and document always but only when such essay is required.

Remember that you need to cite not just direct quotations, but any ideas that are not your own. Inappropriate citation is considered plagiarism. For more information about how and when to cite, visit our section on citations.

Revise your draft. After you have completed an entire first draft, move on to the revision stage. Think about personal essays about being nonbinary on two how to fix my essay the global and the local.

The global level refers to the argument and evidence in your paper, while the local level refers to the individual sentences. Your first priority should be revising at the global essay, because you need to make sure you are making a compelling and well-supported argument. A particularly helpful exercise for global-level revision is to make a reverse outline, which will help you look at your paper as a whole and strengthen the way you have organized and substantiated your argument. Print essay histories for says your draft and number each of the paragraphs.

Then, on a separate piece of organize, write down each paragraph number and, next to it, summarize in a phrase or a sentence the main idea of that paragraph. As you produce this list, notice if any paragraphs attempt to make more than one point: mark those for revision. Once you have compiled the history, read it over carefully. Study the order in which you have sequenced your essays. Notice if there are ideas that seem out of order or repetitive. Look for any gaps in your logic.

Dictionary Abuse. Bell, because Luther and Bell were acting rather than being acted upon. The sub-questions are designed to help you think about the topic. Pull back.

Does the argument flow and make sense?.