Imagine this for a moment.
You have worked your heart out to present a proper essay in class. Yet, all you get is a mere C- in the paper. And the comment on the essay read, “Vague topic selection.”
Losing valuable essay scores due to poor topic selection isn’t an uncommon scenario in college. The topic alone leaves the first impression on your readers. So it better be interesting and valuable enough so that your professors are happy about investing their time in your work. Here are the six steps that will help you choose scoring & impressive informative essay topics in college.
- Consider the assignment directions
Yes, the essay topic should be of personal interest to you. But that shouldn’t mean you violate the assignment directions specified by your university. The essay topic you choose should be relevant to those directions lest you want to lose valuable marks in the paper.
Here are the directions you need to consider:
- The purpose of the assignment (essay in this case)
Professors usually leave you with the choice of what you want to write in the essay. But they mention the nature of the topic and the type of essay they expect you to write. Determine the purpose of the paper first to understand the kind of audience you will cater to.
For instance, a persuasive essay requires you to convince your readers of a particular point of view. So, you need to get hold of a debatable topic in this case. You can’t argue on topics such as ‘My Favorite Hobby.’ Can you? But you can argue on topics such as ‘Schools should teach financial literacy’ or ‘Soda should be offered in school cafeterias.’
- The number and types of sources required
Have you been instructed to use specific numbers and types of sources in the essay? Make sure the research material for your essay topics is available within that number of sources.
- The length
You are most likely to be assigned a specific word count for the essay. The essay topic you choose should have enough research material to meet the word count. It shouldn’t be less or more than the specified word count.
- The deadline
How fast do you need to write the essay? Do you have enough time to work on complex topics that require additional advanced research? You should always check whether you can complete the paper on time with the topic or not.
Once you have evaluated the purpose of your essay, it will be easier for you to choose the right type of topic. You don’t have to get academic assignment help because you chose a topic that you couldn’t cover within the deadline. But if you need it, then you can take Cheap Assignment Help from the experts.
- Brainstorm relevant ideas
Now you know what the professor wants you to do in the essay and the type of topic you should choose. Start brainstorming a list of ideas relevant to your field. They don’t necessarily have to be good ideas. All you have to do is just start creating a list and get your ideas flowing. Write down anything you can think of related to the instructions provided by your college.
For instance, let’s say you have been asked to choose a topic on ‘Health’ for a persuasive essay. So you may get the following suggestions through brainstorming:
- Should healthcare be universal?
- Paternity leave is as important as maternity leave
- Should fast-food restaurants be sin-taxed?
- Should all states highlight the nutritional value of products in restaurants?
This is an example of how your brainstorming would look like. It is a simple step but makes the rest of the essay topic selection process 10X easier for everyone.
- Go through your class notes
Professors usually spend a lot of time talking about the trending topics in their field in the class. These suggestions can help you come up with a scoring topic for the semester. Review your class notes and see if you can find anything that seems interesting or important. Also, go through the focus sections of the text that were assigned in the class.
- Determine what interests you
Essays are usually 1000 or more words long. You cannot write such a lengthy paper if you are not interested in the topic. Thus, it is crucial to pick something you are interested in so that you don’t have to stop writing out of boredom. Prepare a list of all the topics and ideas that you are interested in. See if you can connect any of those ideas to your essay.
You must have quite a few topics at hand by this step. Write additional notes next to each potential topic. Evaluate them to ensure if the topic is appropriate for the essay or not. You already have a good collection of ideas that are relevant to your field and interests. Now it’s time to refine the list to come up with perfect essay topics.
- Narrow down the topic
Narrowing down the topic is essential to maintain the word count specified by your instructor for the essay. It is also important to choose the topic that stands out and helps you earn the appreciation in class. It is, after all, not possible to write an essay on ‘Hatred’ or ‘Television’ for 10-12 pages. You have to be more specific.
Here is how you can narrow down the topics:
- Break down the general topics
You have a general topic. Now break it down into manageable and understandable categories using five W’s and H such as:
- Who? (International global warming campaign)
- What? (Dealing with global warming)
- Where? (Throughout the world with certain areas under maximum exposure)
- When? (It started thousands of years back)
- Why? (Because climate change is real and humans are fools)
- How? (Human activities and natural causes)
- Generate specific ideas
Consider the following questions to narrow down the topics for the essay:
- Problems encountered? (Ice melting, extremes of temperature)
- Problems battled? (Problems already overcame)
- Purposes? (Importance of global warming)
- Effects on a place or group of individuals? (Poor genetic development, poor health conditions)
- Group harmed? (Every living and non-living thing on earth)
- Group benefitted? (None)
- Group responsible for…?(Humans and some natural calamities)
- Consider the S.O.C.R.A.P.R. model
Here is what the model represents:
- S= Similarities(Similar global warming issues before 2010)
- O= Opposites(Difference in opinions about global warming)
- C= Contrasts(Contrasting opinions about global warming)
- R= Relationships(The connection between Global Warming and the earth)
- A= Anthropomorphisms(Connection with reality in terms of human values)
- P= Personifications(animal symbols and metaphors to describe the impact of global warming)
- R= Repetition(More measures to curb the effects of Global warming)
Brainstorming doesn’t take a lot of time. But narrowing does. The secret to narrowing down topics successfully is to stay focused no matter what. Once you have the ideas you are interested in, it’s time to narrow them out for a more refined list.
- Focus on the essay question again
You have already got your refined list of essay topics. Now cross-check to make sure the topic is relevant to your essay question. There are two types of essay questions your professors usually assign:
- Open-ended question
The open-ended question provides you with scope to choose the stance, topic and direction of your essay. You get to choose the topic that you want to engage with. An example of an open-ended question is “Political moments in the history of the Irish State.” You can modify the topic and choose your own direction, stance and scope for the paper.
- Close-ended question
In a close-ended question, you are already asked to engage with a specific task. The criteria and edges of the task are already defined for you. All you have to do is follow those instructions. There isn’t any scope to add creativity to the topic in this case. A close-ended question looks like “Compare and contrast the differences in schooling practices between 19th century and 20th century in the U.K.”
You can start writing the paper once you verify the relevance of your topic to the essay question provided by your professors. You can always break the question into sub-questions if you cannot form a topic from it as a whole. In the case of engineering assignments, it will help you figure out meaningful topics from the essay question provided to you. You can also check Oxford referencing with the help of the advanced Oxford Referencing Generator tool.
It takes time and patience to choose appropriate essay topics. First, determine the ideas you are interested in and create a list accordingly. Once you are ready with the preliminary list, refine the ideas to come up with a more specific topic. Keep your assignment directions in mind while choosing the topic. Choosing right topics is a lengthy task which you have to done with patience.
Ethan Taylor is a content creator at a reputed firm in Australia. He also provides assignment help at MyAssignmenthelp.com. Ethan loves to read in his free time.