How to Write an Analytical Essay

Write an Analytical Essay: Prewriting Stage

It is a must for a student to get to know how to write an analytical essay and what main stages of the process he or she should follow.

It is important to be conscious of the main purpose of an analytical essay to be able to write it properly. What is an analytical essay? It is a piece of writing that contains a certain claim or argument about the text, film, idea or issue to be analyzed. Breaking a topic into several parts, you can think about the required evidence and support your claims, using the details from the research or the analyzed piece.

Analytical Essay Definition

The analytical essay definition makes it clear that the author should know exactly what to write about. In most cases, the teacher assigns one of several topics to the students. Thus, you have to be careful with the prompts and follow them exactly. However, it may also happen that you have to come up with the topic of your own. It may be an analytical essay on a poem, and you are expected to find an aspect to focus on. In this case, it is recommended to start with brainstorming.

Each type of the essays, including an analytical essay on a movie, includes a thesis statement in the form of a single sentence or maximum two sentences with the presented claim. Then, you have to collect the supporting evidence in the relevant sources. You may either use only the primary sources (the analyzed text) or a combination of the primary and secondary sources (the analyzed text and other articles and books). Do not forget that an analytical essay on a book should mention with sources are used. Make the claim well evidenced and supported with the good examples. It is recommended to analyze the supporting evidence in the essay and mention how it supports the arguments.

An analytical essay on a play as well as other types of essays requires an outline. It structures the essay and makes writing more effective. If it is an analytical essay on an article or any other type of texts, you have to estimate the length of the future text. Make the structure of your analytical essay on a short story or some other writing structured according to your teacher’s requirements. Generally, they expect a “5 paragraph essay” with the introduction, three body paragraphs, and conclusion.

Analytical Writing: Writing Stage

Analytical writing should be subject to certain requirements to be interesting and effective for the readers.

Start with writing an introductory part to help the readers grasp the background details. It is important to make the introductory part exciting, but do not make it excessively overzealous. Try not to summarize the prompt; we recommend you to state a clear argument, instead. Writing an analysis, never opt for dramatic introductory sentences with exclamations or questions. Besides, it is recommended not to use personal pronouns (I) (we) (you) in the essay. The thesis is generally presented in the final sentence of the first paragraph.

Each body paragraph should contain

  • topic sentence
  • evaluation of a certain section of the analyzed text
  • details and evidence from the text to supports the analysis.

The function of a topic sentence is to make the readers acquainted with what the paragraph is going to be about. In the part with analysis, you present your argument, and then you support it with the evidence. Keep in your mind that the thesis should be supported throughout the text with every claim.

One of the important things related to writing an analytical essay is proper paraphrasing and quoting. When you quote, you place the exact parts of text in quotation marks to have them in your essay without any changes. What you take is precise wording for supporting the claim in your own text. Check on the rules of referencing in Chicago, APA, and MLA styles to use the appropriate quotation form.

Writing analytically, you should make your concluding part well supported and logical. Make a clear connection with the other parts of the essay and conclude your essay so that the readers were satisfied in their expectations.

Analytical Research Paper: Finalizing the Essay

Each analytical research paper should be proofread for all kinds of mistakes. No teacher will grade the essay with an A if it is not polished properly. It is a good idea to use a spelling check, find all punctuation and spelling errors, and eliminate all run-on sentences.

Try reading your analysis paper aloud and you will hear all awkward places. Fix them before the teacher notices them.

Double check the paper so that all titles, names, settings, and other proper names have the right spelling. An analytical paper is supposed to be flawless in terms of grammar and spelling. Look up the unknown words in the dictionaries and check the proper names in the analyzed text. How would you grade your paper if you were a teacher? Play this game and improve the paper, where needed. Ask yourself, “Is the point clear? Is it is easy to understand the structure of the essay? Is it clear why the topic is important?” Ask some of your friends to have a look at the essay. Do they have any remarks? Can any section be improved? What should be removed or added?