4 Types of Essays You’ll Write in College

Here’s something not everyone tells you: no matter your career, you will be writing in some capacity. This doesn’t just go for English or Philosophy majors either. It doesn’t matter what your job is, you will likely be writing. Whether it’s emails, cover letters, or reports, writing doesn’t stop with graduation.

Another thing you may not know? You’ll get plenty of practice with writing, even if it isn’t your major. College writing assignments won’t just be personal essays like they were in high school. Before you can even start writing, you’ll have to understand the requirements for different essay types.

Keep reading to learn about 4 essay styles you may be writing in your college career.

  • Argumentative

Argumentative essays are meant to convince readers to support a certain opinion or stance on an issue. This isn’t the same thing as a persuasive essay that you may have had to write in high school. How are they different? Persuasive essays are based on the emotions and thoughts of the writer, whereas argumentative essays require solid fact-based evidence and reasoning.

  • Expository

Expository essays are another essay type that requires a good bit of research. The purpose of these types of essays is to explain a topic or subject in great detail. It’s a form of academic writing where the content is presented in an objective manner. This isn’t about convincing or persuading the reader of anything, just giving them all the facts on the topic at hand. Research, research, research!

  • Cause and Effect

These essays are all about explaining the ‘how’ and ‘why’ of different events or situations. They help readers understand not only the outcome of a topic but the reason for the outcome. Cause and effect essays sound simple, but oftentimes writers don’t make a strong enough connection to tie the cause to the effect. If you have to write this type of paper, make sure to clearly point out how one event had an effect on the other.

  • Critical Analysis

Think of a critical analysis as an essay that dissects the subject at hand. In this type of essay, you’ll have to analyze a piece of work to relay what was done well and what could be improved. Critical analysis papers can be on an array of topics. Some things you may have to write a critical analysis on are: films, books, characters, or historical events. Professors often assign these types of papers so that they can see how well their students understand a specific topic.

These are just a few examples of the kinds of papers you can expect to write in college. We know you can’t remember every detail of every essay style, so we suggest using bartleby+ when it’s time to sit down and put pen to paper. Bartleby+ has an Essay Builder tool that allows you to select from 9 different essay styles to get an instant outline. These outlines will tell you what you need to include in your paper and suggest articles that will help you get started. They even have a suite of editing tools for you to use once you have the first draft. These tools can help you build citations, check for plagiarism, correct spelling & grammar errors, and more. Pro Tip: Bartleby’s offering a free month trial on their site for a limited time – sign up now and try it out! Good luck with all those assignments!

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