Essay Types: O–P
by Owen Fourie
What is involved in each of these kinds of essays?
(If you are a new reader of this blog, the introduction to this particular category will help you to understand how this post fits into the bigger picture.)
Distinguish between the opinion essay and the argumentative essay as defined in Essay Types: A – B . Sometimes these terms are used synonymously, so the student needs to find out precisely what is required.
If it is simply “opinion” as distinct from “argument,” you should still know your subject thoroughly and be aware of opposing views.
Express your opinion about a matter in terms of your personal background, experience, understanding, and reasoning without necessarily presenting external evidence but still writing convincingly and persuasively.
Look under Admission, College, College Admission, College Application, Personal.
Look under Autobiographical, Memoir, Narrative, Personal Narrative.
Write persuasively , whether by way of formal argumentation or by merely expressing your opinion, with a view to convincing your reader of the validity of your position, which would be reasonable to accept.
Analyze a poem for its underlying message and meaning by observing the poet’s use of devices such as rhythm, meter, rhyme, alliteration, assonance, tone of voice, and repetition of words and phrases to create mood, emotion, feeling, sound, and imagery to stir all the senses of the reader.
Evaluate the poem’s quality and impact as well as the objective of the poet. Support your thesis with evidence taken from the poem.
Identify and define a particular problem currently of interest and concern. Investigate it thoroughly. Propose a solution and write persuasively for its adoption
Process or Process Analysis
Describe the steps required to do something. Choose a process that you know well. Note, however, that describing a process can also be a useful learning tool: Describing something that is new to you, can help you to grasp the process more thoroughly.
In a formal process essay, you have to use clear and precise language without the convenience of numbered points or bullets.
Begin with the human touch: Tell a story by giving the setting in which the process is required. Your thesis statement will affirm that the application of the procedure will resolve the problem.
Go through all the steps with the necessary warnings and precautions as well as distinctions between things of primary and secondary importance.
Describe the process chronologically using a variety of transition words. Avoid abbreviations.
Not only mechanical or technical processes, but anything that functions or moves or lives and breathes can be the subject of a process essay: the circulatory system in humans, the changing of the seasons by the position of the sun, and much more.
What good or bad experiences have you had with any of the kinds of essays mentioned in this post? Under any of the types in this post, are there points about them that you feel are missing and should be included? Do you have any useful insights? What are your particular struggles? Your comments, observations, and questions are welcome.
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