How to Write a History Essay
What is a history essay?
History is the records of past events at different places. History essays are based on facts and opinions of other historians about a certain period of history. For you to come up with content for your paper you need to have detailed information about the event under description. Writing in history requires deep research of information since these events are activities that happened in the past and therefore you cannot have testified the same, you only rely on information from other written records. Before you get to writing a history paper, you should learn to express yourself well using good language that is appealing to the reader. History is more of narration, so you need to perfect your descriptions to satisfy your audience.
Hints on how to start a history paper
Some of the basic tips that you should beware of when it comes to starting of historical paper include:
- Understand your audience – it is good to know whom you are addressing your paper to so that you can be able to switch to the tone that suits their needs. There are different kinds of audience, and each of them has its specifications. There is two main kinds of audience, that is an official platform and the non-official platform. The first step when you are asked to write a historical essay is to identify where your audience falls.
- Use good and simple English – you should be able to express your narrative in a simple and clear English. It is a requirement that every essay should adhere to the grammar rules to read well. Avoid too much vocabulary in your work since it makes your work look boring.
- Be persuasive in your work – it is good to convince your reader on what you are writing about in your essay. The moment your reader has less trust in your points makes you automatically fail in the paper. There are many ways in which you can be able to persuade your reader in your paper:
– Through the use of senses – when you use senses in your work, automatically the reader becomes involved in your work completely.
– Through ethics – you should use give your arguments supported by ethics so that you can achieve persuading your reader. Ethics is not corrigible, it’s a standard set by the society, and since your reader is a member of it, he or she will have to agree with your argument.
– Through logical reasoning – bring out your arguments logically so that you cannot be questioned by your audience. Ensure that every argument is brought out clearly without mixing up the point to cause misunderstanding.
- Support your statements as much as you can – you should be able to give relevant examples and illustrations for your arguments. The evidence is critical because it acts as a proof of the occurrence of a certain event.
- Use credible sources to reference your work – there are so many literature sources of history in libraries today, but as a good writer, it is good if you go for the scholarly sources that contain facts. Choosing the right resource for your research will help enhance the credibility of the information that you are presenting in your paper.
Understanding history essay format
It is good to have an overview of how your paper will look like before you proceed to write. The format for a history paper is fundamental as it will determine how you are going to accomplish your writing. Here are some of the tips on how to write a good history paper:
- Select the best topic- the topic that you select will automatically dictate the grade that you are going to achieve in that paper. In different institutions, your supervisor may ask you to choose from a list of topics and write the essay. You should go for a topic that has many points since it would be easy for you to express your arguments and supports. With a good topic, you can easily express yourself and achieve the objective of persuasion for your reader.
- Narrow down your objective – history is very wide, and therefore it is almost impossible to write about everything on a topic that you may have been allocated. Before you start your writing, you should go through your supervisors’ instruction and identify the main requirement of the paper. After knowing what your reader wants of you, you can now proceed and major in that area. Avoid too much generalization of your work because you may turn out not to achieve the target of your paper while focusing on other happenings surrounding your topic.
- Conduct resourceful research – research is essential in writing of any historical paper because information of history is kept in different resources, so it is your responsibility as a writer to go through them and extract the right information as per your topic. Use a variety of resources while doing your research so that you can compare the information you get and come up with the best for your essay. There are primary and secondary sources available for you to conduct your research. You should majorly rely on primary sources because they give you original information, secondary sources are there to complement the primary ones.
- Write a draft of your points – the draft should act to guide you on the organization of your points in the paper. You should brainstorm your points and come up with a plan on how you are going to align the points. A good organization will facilitate smooth flow of your work; your reader would find easy time going through your paper because it is organized.
Simplified History Essay outline
Just like other essays, a historical paper is divided into three main parts: they are the introduction, the body and the conclusion.
The introduction – the introduction is where you start your writing. You should include there brief background information about the topic to educate the reader on what they are reading. The introduction should be brief and precise as it is the first appeal of your work and the reader should not lose interest in your paper. Immediately after the introduction, you should write a thesis statement. A thesis statement is a short sentence that states what your essay is going to cover.
The body – the body is actually the main agenda in your essay. You should start your body paragraphs with topic sentences. The topic sentence will help in the introduction of the idea to the reader. Every argument should be accompanied with evidence. Make sure you organize your points smoothly to create an impression of the topic to the reader. Start with the strong points then towards the end you can supplement it with the opinions from secondary sources.
The conclusion – this is the last part of your essay, and so you should not ignore it since it will grade you in the paper. In conclusion, you should prepare the reader psychologically that you are coming to an end through good transition words that imply you are ending. The conclusion is the summary of the major points in the body. Ensure that you restate your thesis then wrap it up with a summary of body points so that the reader can be convinced that you have achieved the target of the essay satisfactorily.
Significance of History Essay examples
There are so many examples of history essay topic that you may be asked to write on, and so, it is good to get familiar with a variety of topics. It is important to go through various history essay samples because it adds up to the knowledge that you have concerning different past events. One thing you can be sure of is that history will always be the same because it is something that happened at one point in the past, so as a writer when you read various history sample papers, you are certain of coming across it in your future writing. Some of the examples of historical essays that you may be asked to write on include:
- Agrarian revolution
- Evolution of man
- World war one
- World war two
- Colonization and acquisition of independence
- Creation theory
You should get familiar with the above topics to be safe when it comes to writing historical essays. Some of the resources where you can get access to those samples are books, journals, articles, magazines and even reports. When you go through the examples, you also acquire different skills on how to write an excellent historical essay. Your competence in writing also improves over time when you learn to go through the works of other authors because you will get familiar with the recommended format and avoid common errors in writing.
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