Where To Look For Well-Written Essay Examples: Advice For Students

Whether you’re looking to improve your writing or just to get an idea of how or what to write for a particular project, reading examples of student essays is your best bet. Taking a look at what other students have written before you can give you some inspiration if you aren’t quite sure where to start. This is especially true if you’re working on a topic that has different interpretations or has many sub-topics. You don’t have to sit there and pour over each and every paper that you find, although that isn’t exactly a bad thing, either, just scan the paper to get an idea of how it was put together, where the emphasis is, the structure, style, etc.

Where to Look

Now that you’ve decided to read some student essays, where do you find them? Here are some suggestions:

  • The library. This is an obvious choice. Look for books that contain essay examples. There are dozens of them out there for any number of topics. The best part about these examples is that they’ve been collected into books and, a lot of times, the editor will annotate them to show where an argument could be further strengthened or where some information can be left out if it isn’t entirely needed.
  • The internet. Ah, the internet. The place we go for all our answers. Check on message boards or websites specializing in homework/assignment help to examples of what a well-written essay should look and sound like. While you might be able to find more examples on the internet as opposed to in books, many do not have corrections, or may not show what the grade received was. Here, would be a time to use your best judgment about what is a good essay versus a bad one.
  • As a professor/friend/classmate. Do you have a particularly helpful professor or a friend or classmate that has a stockpile of essays laying around, ask to see some past work. This is especially helpful if you have a friend that previously took the same class or, at the very least, a similar class.

Studying the work of students before you can be a great addition to your bag of tricks when it comes to completing assignments. While it’s great to read the good, well-written essays, you should also take the time to read a couple of bad ones as well. This can help you to see where other students went wrong and why a certain grade was given.