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How to End an Essay?

November 16, 2020
Tomas Martin

The value of the essay conclusion is frequently underestimated. After the students did an immense job – chose a topic, performed in-depth research, created a thesis, and elaborated the outline, summing up seems like a child’s play that can be to some extent neglected. However, the conclusion of an essay is the last chance of the author to persuade a reader, convey a message, express a standpoint, and create a desirable effect. That is why a successful conclusion is as important as any part of a creative write-up.

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Conclude an Essay

The given article reveals the essence of the essay conclusion, explains its structure and mission. You will learn how to end an essay by making your reader feel a proper aftertaste and synthesize your ideas while demonstrating their sheer importance.

What is an Essay Conclusion?

The definition of the essay conclusion is rather simple and clear. It is the last paragraph of your essay that aims at summarizing all the ideas that have been transferred through an essay, as well as expressing the final standpoint of the author. It defines the importance of the elucidated topic and motivates the reader to continue the research on the definite phenomenon.

Generally, a conclusion for essay has three functions:

  • It should provide the readers with the food for reflection after they have read your essay;
  • It should serve as a closure to all your arguments and thesis giving a reader the feeling of logical completeness.
  • The essay conclusion should never imply any new ideas that haven’t been discussed throughout the main body of the essay. It needs to represent a final say after all the main points have already been introduced. The essay conclusion essay defines the worthiness of your write-up and usually requires a positive note to be based on.

How Long Should an Essay Conclusion Be?

There may be several ways to end an essay but all of them need to be used logically and to the point. A proper essay conclusion should consist of at least three sentences. Usually, the number of sentences depends on the number of paragraphs in  the essay’s main body. Try not to make your conclusion too extensive. It shouldn’t contain just the rewritten ideas from your thesis statement. The main goal of the summary is the restatement of the key points and creating a feeling of smooth closure.

Make sure the conclusion of your essay doesn’t repeat the essay introduction. This is a very common mistake students usually make just by rewriting the first paragraph. There is no point in doing this in case you need to present a professional essay. Try to use persuasion and build an emotional connection with the reader to leave your audience with something to ponder over.

Conclusion Paragraph Outline

As has already been mentioned, the number of sentences the conclusion should include depends on the body section of the essay. In spite of the fact that the concluding paragraph cannot be very long, it has its own structure that should be followed.

The opening sentence

If you wonder how to start a conclusion in an essay, try to formulate your first sentence by restating the main point of the essay thesis. It is highly advisable not to simply recap your thesis but endue it with a deeper sense and understanding.

Main part

After the opening part , you may proceed to wrap up the central parts of your essay. Your main task here is to establish a logical liaison between the key points of the body section and explain how they fit together.

Closure

Final words to conclude an essay have to put closure to the whole text. It should have a connection with the essay hook. To put it simply, try to make your final sentence answer the “So what?” question and ensure the last phrase of your essay  resonates with the reader.

Top Strategies to Use for Writing Essay Conclusions

If you still don’t know how to write a conclusion for an essay, try to use one of these  effective strategies. There is no need to reinvent the wheel – all the ways to conclude an essay have already been created and successfully used.

The already mentioned “So What” Method

After you have elaborated a good piece of a write-up, it may be hard for you to make the final phrase sound fresh. You may feel tired, unmotivated, or simply short of time. However, there is always a solution. Read your essay again and try to ask yourself several  “So what?” questions after mentioning each central point of the main body. This will make you come to proper conclusions in your head and provide you with the right hints on how to conclude the essay.

Echo method

This strategy implies paraphrasing the introduction of your essay by creating a full cycle between the closure and the beginning of your creative work. It means that the conclusion should serve as confirmation that the points introduced in the first paragraph of the text have turned out to be totally proved in the end. Parallel concepts used in the echo method help increase the effectiveness of this strategy and make the conclusion sound professional .

Synthesizing method

Summarize briefly the main points of the essay body. However, instead of repeating the same ideas , use the phrases that support them, and list everything with the examples. This would make a perfect fusion for a perfect essay conclusion. 

Offer a solution, a course of action, or an issue for further investigation

This will leave readers intrigued about the topic and make them keep studying the question deeper. In case you provide a solution, it will most likely have some impact on the reader’s life and be harder to forget.

Base your conclusion on the broader implications

Even if the topic of your essay is too specific, you can always mention the influence of the phenomenon you’re outlining on the related areas or concepts. This can motivate the readers to view it from a fresh perspective.

Choose your method of prediction

Ponder over the consequences the topic you are dealing with can have and how it might change the future. Support your points with “if” and “when” to enhance the effect.

Some handy tips on how to write a conclusion for an essay

  • Try to sell your essay with the help of the conclusion. You did in-depth research, systematized all the information, elaborated a perfect structure, and added something new. Your essay is definitely worth attention and time. Use rhetoric to conclude your work and stress its value without unnecessary humbleness.
  • Your essay conclusion should aim at representing your write-up as a whole meaningful message. Make sure all the points of your essay are connected with each other and have a closure that forms one coherent unit. 
  • Almost all types of essay have their strict rules that should be followed in case you want to make everything right. The conclusion is the only part of creative work where you can slightly violate these rules. Try to impress your readers, make things sound a bit speculatively. However, mind the common sense and don’t state that your ideas can change the world if they actually can’t.
  • The conclusion is not a magic wand that can make a low-quality essay brilliant with the help of just several sentences. However, it can create an unbelievable effect able to make even the most common ideas sound fresh!

Concluding strategies that do not work

In addition to the methods that are 100% effective for the essay conclusion, there are the strategies that you should avoid if you want the final sentences of your essay sound appropriate.

The “That’s My Story and I Am Sticking to It” strategy

That’s the  most favorite strategy of all students. It implies paraphrasing of the thesis that usually turns out to be ridiculously short. Using this strategy reveals your unwillingness and inability to come up with a good conclusion and can ruin all your work.

The “America the Beautiful” or “We Shall Overcome” strategy

Don’t change the mood of your work. If the text in your essay is not sentimental, avoid the excessive emotionality in the conclusion. This is not the right time to play with the feelings of the readers for a better emotional effect. The mood of the conclusion should perfectly match the mood of the whole essay.

The “Sherlock Holmes” strategy

Don’t introduce any new information in the text. All central points should be mentioned in the body section of your essay. The conclusion is for summarizing. Any extra information provided at the end of the text can confuse the readers. Nevertheless, sometimes it happens that the author states some thesis for the first time in the conclusion with the aim to keep the reader intrigued and create the “wow” effect in the end. However, if you deal with an academic essay, a reader will not expect any mystery.

The “Grab Bag” strategy

Don’t use any quotations, statistics, new facts, or other shreds of evidence. They are for the body paragraphs, not for the concluding sentences.

Also, you should not start the conclusion with overused phrases like “in summary”, “in conclusion”, etc. The conclusion of the essay should be built in a way that gives a reader the  feeling of closure without any trite and wooden phrases.

Check Some Essay Conclusion Examples

Now that  you know a couple of effective ways to end an essay, it’s time to take a look at several examples of good essay closures. You can use them for your inspiration or save for future creative works.

Example 1 – Essay on the Origins of Films

The films created at the very dawn of filmmaking can hardly be interesting to the modern audience. Due to the plot rawness and filming crudeness, they often seem a bit off-putting. Dickson Greeting can boast to be neither the most popular example of early cinematography nor one that has given a start to the new genre. However, its capaсity of transforming the film into a technical breakthrough that immensely contributes to the development of the metalinguistic fictional storytelling makes it one of the most exciting works in the history of early filmmaking. Dixon greeted us and it is hard not to accept his greetings. So, we trust him and let ourselves be captured by the illusion of this short silent film. This is where the uniqueness of Dickson Greeting reveals itself to the full extent.

Example 2 – Chinese Secrets of Health

It is hard to imagine Chinese culture without traditional Chinese medicine that often seems mysterious to the rest of the world. Although its key principles and norms differ from ones acceptable in the Western countries, the effectiveness of the oriental treatment and somewhat enigmatic approach has been proven over the centuries. The Chinese doctors use various methods based on the fusion of Yin and Yang, as well as Qi energy flow, to heal the human body. Among the most popular treatments, there are herbal teas, the ancient tradition of acupuncture, and massage. It seems that the Western World should reconsider its opinion about Chinese medicine. Although it doesn’t imply any brand-new diagnostics methods or MRI techniques, the thousand-year traditions of the Chinese people deserve more trust and respect.

Example 3 – Wonders of the Ancient World

The era of gigantic buildings and engineering marvels did not begin with the US skyscrapers. And the ancient world that is full of surprises well proves it. Ancient constructors didn’t have a chance to witness any modern technologies and had only very primitive tools to raise truly huge buildings. However, the Leshan Buddha, Stonehenge, or the Great Wall of China are the existing proof that human inspiration and motivation have no limits and know no obstacles.

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